Canada Labour Code Prosecution: Air Canada

The Incident

On April 22, 2016, a 24-year-old employee of Air Canada was operating a baggage tractor at Lester B. Pearson Airport in Toronto, when he lost control of the vehicle. The tractor tipped over, and the driver side door swung open. The tractor was not equipped with a seatbelt and the employee was ejected. The tractor landed on him, and he died of crush asphyxia.


Following an investigation by the Labour Program, 5 charges were laid against Air Canada on April 11, 2018.

On November 25, 2019, Air Canada pled guilty to one charge under subsection 148(1) of Part II of the Canada Labour Code, (Code) for failing to take adequate preventative measures to address the hazards of operating motorized equipment, in contravention of paragraph 125(1)(z.03) of the Code, and subsection 19.5(1) of the Canada Occupational Health and Safety Regulations. As part of a joint submission, Air Canada was ordered to pay a fine of $100,000 and make a charitable donation of $100,000. The remaining 4 charges were withdrawn.

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