Un­sta­ble hay pil­ing can kill

Stanstead Journal - - NEWS BRIEFS -

On June 21st, 2013, a sta­giaire work­ing at Ferme M. R. Chagnon in Ac­ton Vale was se­ri­ously in­jured after the col­lapse of a pile of hay bales in a barn. Among the causes of the ac­ci­dent, the CSST has iden­ti­fied a pil­ing method that com­pro­mises the sta­bil­ity of piles of hay bales.

On the day of the ac­ci­dent, the sta­giaire was at the base of a pile of hay bales close to 5.9 me­tres. When he placed a wooden pal­ette hold­ing more hay bales be­side the pile, four bales fell off the top of the pile and one, weigh­ing 450 kilo­grams, hit the sta­giare at his neck and he ended up un­der two other bales of hay. He re­ceived in­juries to his neck that will have se­ri­ous con­se­quences.

The in­ves­ti­ga­tion has al­lowed the CSST to es­tab­lish two causes to ex­plain the ac­ci­dent. The pil­ing method com­pro­mised the sta­bil­ity of the pile and the worker was in a dan­ger­ous zone cre­ated by an un­sta­ble pile of hay bales. Fol­low­ing the ac­ci­dent, the CSST has pro­hib­ited work­ers walk­ing or in a trac­tor with­out a roof from be­ing closer than 6 me­tres from a pile of hay bales. Fur­ther­more, the ma­nip­u­la­tion of three bales of hay at a time with a two-point lifter is also pro­hib­ited. It is the re­spon­si­bil­ity of the em­ployer to use a safe and se­cure pil­ing sys­tem.

Ricardo Beau­doin, of Barn­ston West, lost his life in a sim­i­lar ac­ci­dent with piled hay last year. Be­tween 2009 and 2013, 4,690 agri­cul­tural work­ers were hurt while on the job in Que­bec.

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