Laforme Creek north of Revelstoke was the site of a fatal logging accident on July 27, 2015. ~ Google Earth image

Revelstoke logging company fined over fatal logging accident

Canyon Creek Contracting fined in connection with incident that resulted in death of Max Stoller

A Revelstoke logging company was fined by WorkSafeBC in connection with the death a worker in 2015.

Canyon Creek Contracting was fined $13,783.82 after it was found to have not done enough to ensure the safety of its workers prior to an incident resulted in the death of Max Stoller on July 27, 2015.

Stoller died when he was struck by a tree that slid down a cut block during a harvesting operation near Laforme Creek north of Revelstoke.

A report by WorkSafeBC, which was published in the May/June 2017 issue of WorkSafe magazine, says the incident happened during a cable-yarding operation. It says a yarder operator was landing timber onto a road, where a loader was passing it on to a skidder.

That’s when they observed a small tree sliding down the slope. An alert was signalled but Stoller, who was standing next to the skidder and facing away from the slope, was struck by the tree and died as a result of his injuries.

In its report, WorkSafeBC stated the firm did not conduct an adequate assessment of the hazards of steep slope logging, lack of deflection and yarding road angle.

“(The investigation) also found evidence of previous trees having slid downslope, and a previous near miss incident involving a rock rolling downslope toward workers and equipment that did not result in an investigation, hazard assessment, or safety meetings,” reported WorkSafeBC. “The firm failed to plan and operate work in a way that ensured logs were moved safely and workers were not exposed to incoming or runaway logs, a high-risk violation. The firm also failed to ensure the health and safety of workers at its worksite.”

Stoller, who was 65 when he was killed, had spent decades working in the logging industry. He was posthumously named the Pioneer Logger of the Year by the BC Interior Forestry Museum at this year’s Timber Day event in Revelstoke.

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