Kamloops Tirecraft fined $8,400 following 2018 workplace death

A petition has been created by Brendan Stokes' friends and family calling for harsher penalties

WorkSafe BC has levied an $8,400 fine against the employer of a 19-year-old Kamloops man who died two years ago in a workplace accident.

Brendan Stokes was working for Kamloops Tirecraft when he was killed on a service call in Dallas back on June 29, 2018.

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Stokes had been cleaning the wheel hub on a loader suspended by a hydraulic jack when the vehicle slipped off the jack and landed on him, causing fatal injuries, the report states.

An investigation found Kamloops Tirecraft failed to service the loader in accordance with the manufacturer's instructions or as specified by a professional engineer.

Tirecraft also failed to ensure the jack was used according to the manufacturer's instructions, and did not establish safe work procedures for servicing mobile equipment tires, including procedures for removing tire assemblies.

“Furthermore, the firm failed to provide its workers with the information, instruction, training and supervision necessary to ensure their health and safety,” the report reads.

WorkSafe BC described these as “high-risk violations,” noting Kamloops Tirecraft also failed to adequately train its new and young workers and did not keep orientation and training records, which were both repeat violations.

The work safety watchdog issued an administrative penalty of $8,403.52 in April.

The fines are published as a deterrent and to highlight the importance of making workplaces safe.

Petition launched

In response to the fine, a petition has been created calling for harsher penalties as a result of Stokes’ death.

The change.org petition was signed by Stokes’ mother, Kara, who called the fine “a smack in the face.”

As of Friday afternoon, it had more than 2,800 signatures.

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