Unstable hay piling can kill
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.