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Digest of the Week: “Workplace safety report – only if a realistic risk to worker safety”

Blue Mountain Resorts Ltd. v. Bok
 2013 CarswellOnt 1337
Ontario Court of Appeal
Judgment: February 7, 2013

Proceedings: reversing Blue Mountain Resorts Ltd. v. Bok (2011), 2011 CarswellOnt 3468, 335 D.L.R. (4th) 483, (sub nom. Blue Mountain Resorts Ltd. v. Ontario (Minister of Labour)) 278 O.A.C. 325, 2011 ONSC 3057, [2011] O.L.R.B. Rep. 401 (Ont. Div. Ct.); affirming Blue Mountain Resorts Ltd. v. Bok (2009), 2009 CarswellOnt 9201, [2009] O.L.R.B. Rep. 203 (Ont. L.R.B.)

See the LabourSource Advantage for yourself

Labour and employment law | Occupational health and safety legislation | Administrative procedures under legislation | Jurisdiction

Employer operated ski resort and employed about 1,750 employees in peak season — Guest at resort drowned in unsupervised swimming pool — Employer was obliged by s. 51(1) of Occupational Health and Safety Act ("Act") to report death of person to inspector and director under Act where death occurred at workplace — Employer did not report death to inspector or director because guest was not employee — Inspector attended employer's premises and ordered employer to comply with s. 51(1) of Act — Employer unsuccessfully appealed to Ontario Labour Relations Board — Employer brought application for judicial review — Application was dismissed — Employer appealed — Appeal allowed — Decision of divisional court was set aside and application for judicial review was allowed — Interpretation given to s. 51(1) of Act by Board and Divisional Court was unreasonable — Section 51(1) ought to be interpreted to provide that Ministry must be notified of death or critical injury at site, and requisite report provided, where there is some reasonable nexus between hazard giving rise to death or critical injury and realistic risk to worker safety at workplace.
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