A Kamloops bakery owner is out nearly $8,500 after a WorkSafeBC fine was levelled against his Brocklehurst business.
A penalty notice posted by WorkSafeBC shows that Craig’s Bakery, located in the Brocklehurst Shopping Centre, was fined $8,484 on Feb. 15 following an inspection.
The notice indicated a mixing machine was operating without a safeguard and that the “sanding and grinding of flooring tiles, a confirmed asbestos-containing material (ACM), had taken place in food preparation areas.”
“The firm failed to take the necessary precautions to protect workers before allowing work that would disturb ACMs, a high-risk violation,” reads the WorkSafeBC report summary.
Bakery owner Craig Einfeld said he respects the decision made by WorkSafeBC, but also noted the fine was a big hit to his pocketbook in a time when he is trying to sell the business.
Three years ago, Einfeld lost his wife suddenly to cancer. Following that, he decided to retire and put the business he built with his wife up for sale.
“We had quite a few inquiries, but the floor issue kept coming up,” he said, noting the floor was uneven and difficult to keep clean because of its condition.
Einfeld said he had been trying to work with his landlord to redo the floor, but gave up and opted to pay for it himself.
He hired a flooring company and said he was reassured the work could be done in a way that was WorkSafeBC compliant.
With two options — either cover the floor or remove it — Einfeld opted to cover it due to the much higher cost and time required to remove it.
Preparations began just before the store closed for the day and that’s when Einfeld believes the complaint was made, but he stressed that nobody was baking bread nor making food when the work took place.
“We covered the floor, legally, the way it should have been done,” he said.
“They [WorkSafeBC inspectors] came in the following week after the complaint hit their office, asked about the floor and issued a stop-work order and said they had to do an investigation,” Einfeld said.
The bakery ended up being shut down for five days in early December.
WorkSafeBC then requested an air test, which the bakery passed, followed by a top-to-bottom cleaning by a hazardous materials company. The bakery also received another inspection by Interior Health before Einfeld was given the green light to reopen.
In addition to the cost of the floor and the fine, Einfeld opted to continue paying his employees while the bakery was closed, making the entire ordeal a costly sum.
“It’s huge for me. Nothing to be sneezed at, for sure,” he said.
Craig’s Bakery has been in Kamloops for 15 years after expanding from its Chase location.
After a brief social media blow-up over the WorkSafeBC fine, Einfeld was left reflecting on his business and remains positive.
“People have been extremely receptive,” he said,
“We’ve flourished here and created a lot of employment for people and the customers have been awesome — and they need to know how much we appreciate that.”
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