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Slick Stemming the tide of pipeline leaks


Determining causation in occupational exposure


Gender influences musculoskeletal-disorder risk


The domino effect of low PPE use


The dos and don’ts of using nail guns



S E PT E M B E R / OCTOB E R 2 0 16 Volu m e 3 2 , N u m b e r 5


Black Tide


Pipeline leaks that continue to make headlines have raised questions on pipeline integrity and existing technology’s ability to detect and stem leaks promptly. BY WILLIAM M. GLENN



Beating the Odds

A decision in favour of three workers who claimed they had contracted cancer from a lab in the absence of confirmatory evidence suggests a lower burden of proof. BY KELLY PUTTER




A Tale of Two Sexes

Understanding how gender difference plays a role in women having a higher risk of musculoskeletal injuries than men do can influence prevention approaches. BY JEAN LIAN



Raising the Stakes

The low rate of personal-protective-equipment use in Saskatchewan’s residential construction sector may affect workers’ compensation premiums. BY JEFF COTTRILL







Power and Prejudice


British Columbia cabbie stabbed; Alberta sour-gas plant deemed a risk; Saskatchewan oilfield worker dies in fall; prison riot in Nova Scotia prompts concerns; and more.


For every job task that exposes a worker to welding fumes, flying fragments and blinding dust, there is safety eyewear that can protect our windows to the soul. BY JEFF COTTRILL



Know Your Triggers

Nail guns are indispensable in many jobs, but the speed and force that make these fastening tools useful can also pose mortal dangers to the workers who wield them. T I M E O UT

False alarm; air rage; beer fest in NYC; bee-vasion; loiterer repellant; and more.




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Wolf attacks miner; exercise curbs appetite; and more.



For Your Eyes Only


It will never happen to me.


S E P T E M B E R / O C T O B E R 2 0 16




Power and Prejudice “



hy couldn’t you just keep your knees together?” This remark by Canadian judge Robin Camp to a sexual-assault victim during a trial he presided over in Calgary in 2014 have not only spurred an inquiry by the Canadian Judicial Council. The comment also highlights a deep-seated prejudice that victims of sexual harassment or assault continue to face in this day and age. In the July/August issue of OHS Canada, we published a feature on Bill 132, which ushered in a slew of new employer obligations to prevent, address and investigate sexual-harassment complaints in Ontario workplaces. We also ran a web poll asking whether respondents would file a complaint if they had been sexually harassed at work. I was surprised and dismayed to learn that only half had indicated that they would lodge a complaint. In light of Judge Camp’s comments, I should not have been surprised by the preliminary poll results. Coming out against a sexual aggressor remains a daunting endeavour and one that does not guarantee justice. Filing a workplace sexual-harassment complaint can also put one’s livelihood and credibility on the line if the allegations are deemed invalid or if the harasser is someone from senior management. Sexual-harassment cases are tricky to adjudicate. It is not just a matter of hesays-she-says; ensuring confidentiality can also prove challenging, since an investigation requires verifying allegations by interviewing co-workers. The process of seeking redress often means that victims are traumatized a second time by reliving the experience and braving the stigma and shame of being regarded as a consensual party in the event of an unsuccessful outcome. While the term “complainant” is officially used to describe someone who accuses another person of misconduct, the word itself is potentially dismissive and carries the connotation of being a whiner. Judge Camp’s remarks are by no means a first among figures of authority who can influence investigation processes and the outcomes of sexual-harassment cases. Earlier this year, an outcry erupted over a cop’s comments that women can avoid sexual assault by not dressing like “sluts” while speaking at a campus safety-information session in Toronto. In June 2015, Canada’s Chief of the Defence Staff General Tom Lawson said on CBC’s The National that sexual harassment remains an issue in the Canadian Forces, because men are “biologically wired in a certain way.” This is 2016; to hear such stone-age remarks from people in positions of authority in a first-world country is disturbing evidence of hard-wired, ingrained sexist attitudes that continue to shape gender and power relationships in our society. Legislative measures like Bill 132 are steps in the right direction, but real change comes from addressing prejudices that lurk in the deep recesses of our collective psyche. Sexual harassment comes in myriad forms, many of which emerge out of the blue. When I was a rookie reporter in Saskatchewan, I approached a man for a streeter quote. He said he would talk to me if I got behind the bushes with him, before letting out a laughter reminiscent of a pack of hyenas closing in on a fallen prey. That incident sticks in my mind after all these years. For the record, I was not dressed like a slut that day, and I managed to keep my knees together.


Jean Lian


ohs canada


Vol. 32, No. 5 SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2016











EDITORIAL ADVISORY BOARD MEMBERS DAVID IRETON, Safety Professional, Brampton, Ont. AL JOHNSON, Vice President, Prevention Services WorkSafeBC, Richmond, B.C. JANE LEMKE, Program Manager, OHN Certification Program, Mohawk College, Hamilton, Ont.

DON MITCHELL, Safety Consultant, Mississauga, Ont. MICHELE PARENT, National Manager, Risk Management and Health and Wellness, Standard Life, Montreal, Que.

TERRY RYAN, Workers’ Compensation and Safety Consultant, TRC Group Inc., Mississauga, Ont.

DON SAYERS, Principal Consultant, Don Sayers & Associates, Hanwell, N.B. DAVID SHANE, National Director, Health and Safety, Canada Post Corporation, Ottawa, Ont.

HENRY SKJERVEN, President, The Skjerven Cattle Company Ltd., Wynyard, Sask. PETER STRAHLENDORF, Assistant Professor, School of Environmental Health, Ryerson Polytechnic University, Toronto, Ont.

JONATHAN TYSON, Association of Canadian Ergonomists/Association canadienne d’ergonomie, North Bay, Ont. OHS CANADA is the magazine for people who make decisions about health and safety in the workplace. It is designed to keep workers, managers and safety professionals informed on oh&s issues, up to date on new developments and in touch with current thinking in the oh&s community.

WEBSITE: INFORMATION AND RECOMMENDATIONS contained in this publication have been compiled from sources believed to be reliable and to be representative of the best current opinion on the subject. No warranty, guarantee nor representation is made by Annex-Newcom LP as to the absolute correctness or sufficiency of any representation contained in this publication.

OHS CANADA is published six times per year by Annex-Newcom LP, a leading Canadian information company with interests in daily and community newspapers and business-to-business information services. The yearly issues include: January/ February, March/April, May/June, July/August, September/October and November/December.

ADDRESS: OHS CANADA MAGAZINE, 80 Valleybrook Drive, Toronto, ON M3B 2S9. TELEPHONE: Customer Service: 1-866-543-7888; Editorial: 416-510-6893; Sales: 416-510-5102; Fax: 416-510-5171.

SUBSCRIPTIONS: Canada: $110.50/year; USA: $132.50/year; foreign: $137.50. (Prices include postage and shipping; applicable taxes are extra.)

SINGLE COPIES: Canada: $6.00; USA: $8.00; foreign: $10.00 Bulk subscription rates available on request. Indexed by Canadian Business Periodicals Inc. ISSN 0827-4576 OHS Canada (Print) • ISSN 1923-4279 OHS Canada (Online) Printed in Canada. All rights reserved. From time to time, we make our subscription list available to select companies and organizations whose product or service may interest you. If you do not wish your contact information to be made available, please contact us via one of the following methods: Circulation Customer Service: Silva Telian (Tel) 416-442-5600 ext. 3636; (Fax) 416-510-6875; (E-mail); (Mail) Privacy Officer, Annex-Newcom LP, 80 Valleybrook Drive, Toronto, ON M3B 2S9 Canada. The contents of this magazine are protected by copyright and may be used for your personal, non-commercial purposes only. All other rights are reserved, and commercial use is prohibited. To make use of any of this material, you must first obtain the permission of the owner of the copyright. For further information, please contact the editor. We acknowledge the financial support of the Government of Canada through the Canada Periodical Fund of the Department of Canadian Heritage.

Publications mail agreement no. 43005526. Date of issue: SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2016

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1.5 million The number of workers who are exposed to sun at work every year in Canada. Source: CAREX Canada



5 3



1. Diesel-Truck Safety: WorkSafeBC published a new bulletin in September, providing information to truck drivers and their employers on how to prevent flash fires, safe work practices for refuelling and what policies and procedures employers in the trucking industry need to have in place to ensure worker health and safety. The bulletin also examines the role of fuel-tank vent systems, modern diesel fuel and the risk of static ignition.

Amount the Ontario Ministry of Labour announced on August 10 that it is investing into the Paramedic Association of Canada to fund a new psychological health and wellness standard for the profession. Source: Ontario Ministry of Labour

Source: WorkSafeBC

2. Marking a Milestone: The Alberta Construction Safety Association held a presentation ceremony in Edmonton on August 30 to commemorate the one millionth person to enroll into workplace-safety training with the province’s largest safety association. Source: Alberta Construction Safety Association 3. All Hands on Deck: The Ontario Ministry of Labour is hiring 38 inspectors to beef up oh&s laws and standards at construction and industrial worksites. An announcement on the Ministry website dated August 16 says successful candidates will undergo extensive training consisting of both classroom and field work. Source: Ontario Ministry of Labour

Respect at Work: New Brunswick observed Respectful Workplace Week from September 5 to 9 as part of the provincial government’s efforts to promote workplace equality, while raising awareness of bullying and discrimination. Source: Government of New Brunswick 4.

5. Work Zone Safety: The Newfoundland and Labrador Department of Transportation and Works has collaborated with the Heavy Civil Association of Newfoundland and Labrador on an online advertising campaign to raise public awareness of road safety around construction work zones. A statement from the provincial government dated August 30 says the advertisements target motorists during the peak season of road and highway construction. Source: N.L. Government

360° 6

GOING DOWN More than 30 people were hospitalized with injuries and an unknown number were still missing after a boat was involved in a collision while transporting passengers to a religious ceremony along the Chao Phraya river in Ayutthaya province, located 80 kilometres north of Bangkok. Overloading and a strong current are believed to have caused the incident. Source: The Associated Press

1,517 The number of collisions involving commercial vehicles in Saskatchewan in 2014, resulting in 21 fatalities and 373 injuries. Source: Saskatchewan Government Insurance

1.5 times The hike in workers’ compensation claims from Alberta’s agricultural industry from January to July 2016, compared to the same period last year. Source: Workers’ Compensation Board of Alberta


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Recent issues of ohs canada and our website,, have provided readers with plenty to chew on. DISMISSAL DEEMED RETALIATORY Employers dismissed mechanic after he had reported safety issues: ruling. (canadian occupational health and safety news (cohsn),

not fully trained to do. Perhaps before we blame workers, we should be looking at gaps in the management systems that led to the explosion.

Matt van Gils



Another worker was injured at the Agrium potash mine in Saskatchewan. (the canadian press, August 23, 2016)

September 13, 2016)

These are not uncommon occurrences among high-level engineering, procurement and construction-management firms... If the health and safety processes affect the schedule to the point where cost starts to become the issue, safety always takes a back seat. The unfortunate part is, they always find workers who will put their livelihood on the line to get the work done, believing falsely that they will be compensated in the event of a serious accident that renders them disabled. I have seen the construction manager of one of these firms come right to the hoist zone to argue with the iron workers when they refused to do a lift due to cracking lift lugs on the test pick. Thankfully, a strong safety professional was there to document their work refusal. And when that construction manager read the work-refusal report... he listened to them and had the lugs reengineered. Lee Pearce

PROVINCE DEFENDS FRACKING Officials at British Columbia’s public power utility raised concerns that earthquakes caused by fracking may put hydroelectric dams at risk. (the canadian press, August 17, 2016) How can anyone argue about the potential for a damaged or collapsing dam? The after-effects could be extremely damaging from a health, safety, 8

economic and environmental perspective. Materials sustaining less obvious damages from lower intensity or frequency vibrations and smaller, more frequent vibrations after an accumulation of these events can result in an unexpected accident.


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The union for the Ontario Public Service Employees Union alleges that employees feel unsafe in the work environment. (cohsn, August 9, 2016) Glad to see a union stand up to workplace harassment. It is perplexing that while 64 per cent of employees (20 per cent of them are likely unionized) have experienced workplace harassment, only few unions openly take a strong stand in bargaining. Almost all workplaces now have policies, but few are effective. If we do not insist on enforcement, policy is something “nice” for wall decoration and false democracy. Jenny Tang

FIRM BLAMES EMPLOYEES One of the families referred to Nexen Energy’s placement of some blame for an explosion on the two workers who died in the incident as a “disgrace.” (the canadian press, July 13, 2016) After reading Nexen’s comments about the workers acting “out of scope,” it makes me wonder about the frequency and effectiveness of supervision of the workers. After all, the employer has an onus to provide adequate supervision to workers on the worksite. This is intended to ensure that workers are doing only tasks in which they are trained and are competent to carry out, and if not, that a competent person is actively supervising workers carrying out tasks they are

Jodi Flatt

Although I do not know the causes of these accidents, I still see employers’ written health and safety policies that look good, but act as a cover-up for the many unsafe conditions in the workplace. One of the main problems is a lack of workers’ training, especially young workers. Matt Van Gils

DRAWING THE LINE A feature on Bill 132 was published in the July/August 2016 issue of ohs canada. In the article, it is mentioned several times that the ministry can order a third-party investigation into sexualharassment claims. However, the bill never mentions a third party, only that the investigation is to be undertaken by a qualified person who is impartial. I believe this is a huge distinction. For smaller companies, there is little doubt that this could mean a third party. However, many larger companies may be able to still have an internal investigation performed and still meet the requirements of the Act. Bert Huntley Follow us on Twitter @OHSCanada

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CALL FOR POT-USE BAN FEDERAL — As the federal government moves forward with pot legalization, the national safety association for the upstream oil and gas sector is demanding the continued prohibition of marijuana use among employees in the industry, citing the drug as a workplace hazard. In a letter to the Cannabis Legalization and Regulation Secretariat dated August 29, Calgary-based Enform claims that alcohol and drugs have been “a pressing safety concern” for the organization over the past decade. An upstream petroleum worker’s use of drugs “has the potential to create unacceptable safety risks,” Enform president and chief executive officer Cameron MacGillivray writes in the letter. “Given the carry-over effects of drugs, including marijuana, these risks can occur regardless of whether use occurs at work or in close temporal proximity to when an employee will report to work.” MacGillivray adds that pot legalization will have a negative effect on work-


place safety in oil and gas and suggests that any new legislation on marijuana “must address the obligations of employers to maintain a safe work environment and the workplace safety risks associated with marijuana use and abuse.”

MISREADING OF GAUGES CITED FEDERAL — Fuel exhaustion led to the forced landing of an aircraft three years ago after a pilot misread the fuel gauges, says a report from the Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) published on August 17. The incident occurred on June 10, 2013, when a Beechcraft King Air 100 plane with three passengers took off from the Montréal/St-Hubert Airport at 5 p.m. for a short test flight to check the rudder trim indicator and confirm a synchronization problem between the autopilot and the global positioning system. On its return trip, the aircraft ran out of fuel, so the pilot landed in a field near the StMathieu-de-Beloeil Airport. The landing

damaged the plane substantially, and all four aboard sustained minor injuries. The TSB investigation found that the pilot, who had a history of substandard performance for that type of aircraft, had relied exclusively on the fuel gauges and wrongly assumed that there had been enough fuel for a simulated instrument landing approach. The company’s operations manager was insufficiently experienced in commercial air-carrier operations to perceive the pilot’s limitations. “If companies assign inexperienced personnel to key flight-operations management positions, there’s a risk that deviations in performance or from regulations will not be detected, reducing the safety of flight operations,” the report says.

FIRMS CHARGED OVER INJURY CAMBRIDGE BAY — The Workers’ Safety and Compensation Commission (WSCC) for the Northwest Territories and Nunavut has charged four employers and four individuals over an incident

REPORT HIGHLIGHTS FISHING-SAFETY ISSUES FEDERAL — An investigation report from the Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) stresses the continuing safety risks in the country’s fishing industry as it reveals information about an incident in Placentia Bay, Newfoundland that led to three fatalities last year. A small fishing vessel, CFV 130214, disappeared and was reported overdue at 7:23 p.m. on June 16, 2015. A search-and-rescue team found the bodies of the boat’s crabfishing crew members on Bar Haven Island the following day. The boat, believed to have sunk, was never recovered. The report, published on August 2, cannot make any firm conclusions about the cause of the tragedy, due to the lack of witnesses and survivors. But the TSB investigation did find that the master of the crew had modified a 7.1-metre vessel for crab fishing while his main boat had been out of commission. The fisher did not test the modified boat for stability, and investigators speculated that added weight from the modifications, crew members and fishing equipment had made the vessel more vulnerable to capsizing. The master was required to request an exemption from the Fisheries Licensing Policy to lease another proper crab-fish-


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ing boat, but did not do so. As there were only a few weeks left in the crab-fishing season and the master had not fulfilled his quota, he was under pressure to get results right away. As well, the fishers did not have a distress communication device aboard the boat. Such a device was not mandatory, but has been known to save lives in the past, the report states. The bodies of the victims were not wearing personal flotation devices when they were discovered. “The safety of fishermen will be compromised until the complex relationship and interdependency among safety issues is recognized and addressed by the fishing community,” the report concludes. “The number of accidents involving loss of life on fishing vessels remains too high.” Although regulations have been proposed to address several of the safety deficiencies, there have been significant delays in the implementation of some of these initiatives. “Concerted and coordinated action is required by federal and provincial authorities and by leaders in the fishing community to improve the safety culture in fishing operations,” the report reads. — By Jeff Cottrill

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that left a worker injured last summer. According to a WSCC statement dated September 8, the incident occurred at the Canadian High Arctic Research Station site in Cambridge Bay in August 2015. Although no specific details were available, the Commission has charged EllisDon Corporation, Kitnuna Projects Inc., Best Choice Construction (RB) Ltd. and EXP Services Inc., as well as Dan Cress, Abraham Leonard Houwelling, Justin McDonnell and Rod Osmond, named as supervisors or employees of the companies. The charges involve violations of the Nunavut Safety Act, such as failure to give sufficient safety instruction to employees and to take all reasonable precautions to ensure their safety. “The WSCC reminds all employers that their worksite responsibilities include: providing a safe workplace; providing equipment and machinery that is in safe condition; hiring competent


supervisors who ensure safe work procedures are followed; providing adequate job training… and supplying personal protective equipment,” the organization says in the statement. The defendants made their first court appearance on September 19.

NEW GUIDE PUBLISHED YELLOWKNIFE — The workers’ compensation board for the Northwest Territories and Nunavut has released a new guide to help small businesses in the territories to develop oh&s programs. Published on September 6 by the Workers’ Safety and Compensation Commission (WSCC), the Occupational Health and Safety Program Guide for Small Businesses is a step-by-step guide for companies with fewer than 20 employees to build their own safety pro-

grams using samples and templates that they can adapt for their own purposes. A WSCC statement notes that although small businesses in these territories are often not required to develop full workplace-safety programs, regulations indicate that they must provide some form of safety training and implement safe procedures. “No business is too small for safety,” says WSCC president and chief executive officer Dave Grundy, adding that the new guide will make health and safety manageable for small companies.

CAB DRIVER STABBED KAMLOOPS — The Kamloops, British Columbia detachment of the RCMP has arrested a 19-year-old male who is accused of seriously injuring a cab driver on August 24.

MECHANIC FIRED FOR RAISING SAFETY CONCERNS VANCOUVER — A recent ruling has determined that a mechanic working on the Evergreen Line — an extension of Metro Vancouver’s SkyTrain transit system — was let go from his job because he had raised safety concerns and refused to perform unsafe tasks. In the decision dated August 26, WorkSafeBC rules that SNC-Lavalin and SELI Canada discriminated against David Britton by terminating his employment on November 3, 2014. Although the employers claimed that Britton’s work on the Line had been completed, Britton charged that they had punished him for reporting safety issues and refusing to certify a refuge chamber, as well as lying about the reasons for his dismissal. “I conclude the worker was not laid off by the employers for lack of availability of work for the conveyor mechanics,” writes Doug MacDonald, WorkSafeBC’s investigations legal officer for its Compliance Section, “but rather was dismissed, at least in part, for concerns he had expressed about the refuge chamber readiness.” Britton explains that he examined the refuge chamber with a visiting mining engineer in late 2014 and that they found several problems with it. Although the chamber required certain parts, including a cartridge to convert carbon monoxide into carbon dioxide, the employers did not purchase them despite Britton’s repeated reminders. “I reported this at joint occupational health and safety meetings,” Britton says. “Meanwhile, increasingly, pressure is being put on me to certify this chamber,” he notes, adding that he refused to certify the chamber until it could per-


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form to its designed function. Eventually, Britton received the needed parts and signed off on the chamber’s readiness. “Three days after I signed that, they fired me,” he says. According to Britton, his supervisor was a temporary foreign worker from Italy who did not speak English; this made communication difficult in a dangerous work environment. As well, the supervisor had been cited for safety violations before Britton was hired for the project. Britton reported an incident in 2014 in which his supervisor had climbed inside a “rock box”, a closed structure that sometimes contains noxious gases, without wearing a harness or having a colleague posted below. Knowing that the supervisor was violating safety protocols, Britton took a photo and gave it to a safety officer. Following the report, he claims that his co-workers from Italy began to harass and bully him. B.C. Federation of Labour president Irene Lanzinger calls SNC-Lavalin’s conduct “reprehensible” in a statement from September 8. “These are serious violations, and the penalties for SNC should be severe,” Lanzinger says. “This decision will encourage other workers to speak out about unsafe workplaces in the face of employer efforts to silence them.” Britton is not the only worker on the Evergreen Line who has been dismissed after bringing up safety concerns. Crane operator Julio Serrano, who refused unsafe work and reported many unsafe conditions for more than a year to SNC-Lavalin, also has a case before WorkSafeBC. Serrano refused to operate a crane last year after the employer had removed the limit switch. — By Jeff Cottrill

The Kamloops RCMP says Kami Cabs Ltd. driver Cal Huntington picked up a passenger at a gas station and was dropping him off when the passenger stabbed him in the face and neck. B.C. Ambulance Services transported Huntington to Royal Inland Hospital, where he was treated for life-threatening injuries. The Kamloops RCMP’s Serious Crimes Unit released surveillance photos of the suspect to the media taken shortly before the stabbing. Later that day, police arrested 19-year-old Austin Eyres and booked him for aggravated assault, among other charges.

Hospital and Royal Columbian Hospital in New Westminster. “We are working with provincial health authorities to ensure patient care and safety is maintained,” Rick Hill, Helijet’s vice president of commercial and business programs, says in a statement dated August 18. “In the interim, Helijet is actively engaged with Transport Canada to meet regulatory requirements

and has also applied for an exemption so regular service can resume as soon as possible.” Although the company reportedly has a stellar overall safety record, the crew of a Helijet Sikorsky S76C+ copter temporarily lost control of the aircraft last November 15 while on their way from Vancouver International Airport to Tofino/Long Beach Airport. A subsequent

HELIPORT LANDINGS SUSPENDED RICHMOND — An organization providing air-ambulance services in southwestern British Columbia temporarily suspended landings at seven hospital heliports in the area, due to Transport Canada’s (TC) concerns that the aircraft are not properly designed for night flights in populated urban areas. Helijet International Inc., which has been contracted to provide medevac helicopters for British Columbia Air Ambulance Services for the past 18 years, began landing the choppers at local airports or helipads from which patients are transported to hospitals by ground ambulance. The company states that TC withdrew an exemption that allowed the company to land at hospitals directly. “Recent inspections discovered areas of non-compliance with requirements for the helicopters to be able to maneuver during engine failure while operating in built-up urban areas,” TC regional communications officer Sau Sau Liu says. “For heliport operations, the aircraft must be configured in accordance with all of the manufacturer’s specifications for vertical operations,” Liu adds. “One of several specific requirements is a vertical visibility pilot door, which improves the pilot’s ability to see the landing area immediately below the aircraft in the event of an emergency landing.” The facilities at which Helijet suspended direct landings include Vancouver General Hospital, B.C. Children’s Hospital in Vancouver, Surrey Memorial Hospital, Nanaimo Regional General

S E P T E M B E R / O C T O B E R 2 0 16


inspection of the chopper revealed that there was oil on the airframe and on the rotor blades. There were no injuries or fatalities, but the Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) later determined that the aerodrome had not been certified for night landings. Although the aircraft was back in medevac service after further inspection, it was taken out of commission again after the discovery that its main-rotor transmission had been exposed to excessive torque during the Vancouver-Tofino flight. The TSB is investigating the incident.

RECYCLING FIRM CHARGED EDMONTON — The Alberta Ministry of Labour laid four charges against a recycling firm on August 17 over an incident in Edmonton two years ago. An announcement on the Ministry website says a male employee of Greys Recycling was trying to remove pulp debris from a paper press on September 19, 2014 when his arm became caught in the press, resulting in serious injuries. The Ministry charged the company with two violations of the province’s Occupational Health and Safety Regulation, as well as one count of violating Section 2(1)(a)(i) of the  Occupational Health and Safety Act and one of contravening Section 310(2)(a) of the  Occupational Health and Safety Code.


PLANT POSES “SERIOUS“ RISKS CALGARY — A company that runs a sour-gas plant in Mazeppa, Alberta is incapable of responding to emergencies, due to an inactive leak-detection system and a shortage of staff, the Alberta Energy Regulator (AER) warns. Suzanne Belliveau, acting director of enforcement and surveillance with the energy-industry watchdog, issued an order to Lexin Resources Ltd., the Calgary company that runs the plant, on August 9. The order reveals that Lexin laid off most of the Mazeppa plant’s staff on June 30, with only six employees left to manage the plant and its connected pipelines and wells. On July 29, the company told AER that it could not respond to emergencies and would defer the responsibility to AER. Ryan Bartlett, an AER senior advisor, says the agency has done some inspections since February and had found deficiencies in their facilities. “On August 9th, we ordered the company to immediately suspend the Mazeppa gas plant and any associated infrastructure.” Lexin was also expected to submit new plans describing how it will monitor the plant and respond to emergencies and safety-related complaints there by August 15. While the company does have an emergency-response plan in place, “we have asked for some addi-

tional information, just to ensure that a response is possible if it happens to be an emergency,” Bartlett adds. Belliveau’s order notes that the supervisory-control and data-acquisition system intended to monitor releases of sour gas at the plant is not operational and that Lexin failed to comply with one section of an order that AER had issued on June 15. Once Lexin has submitted its new incidence and monitoring plans and other information to AER, the company is expected to implement the plans, subject to the approval of the regulator’s director. The company must also submit a weekly written report to AER detailing any actions taken regarding incident response and monitoring, as well as post a weekly public report on its website.

THREE EMPLOYERS PENALIZED REGINA — Saskatchewan’s Ministry of Labour Relations and Workplace Safety fined three employers for unrelated contraventions of the oh&s law. According to two statements from the provincial government, Saskatoon firm C. & F. Installations Company (1984) Ltd. pleaded guilty on August 29 and was fined $32,200 for its role in a July 15, 2014 incident, in which a worker installing irrigation pipes was trapped under a trencher at a worksite near Swift

MINERS TRAPPED UNDERGROUND ROCANVILLE — An earthquake in southeastern Saskatchewan on September 5 led to a power outage that trapped around 40 miners underground at a potash mine near Rocanville, located 230 kilometres east of Regina. The quake occurred at about 4:40 a.m., had a depth of around one kilometre and measured 3.8 on the Richter scale, according to information from Earthquakes Canada. The effects of the quake knocked out the power at a regional substation near the PotashCorp Rocanville mine, shutting down power to a large part of the area, says Randy Burton, PotashCorp’s director of public relations and communications. “Under normal circumstances, our emergency generator would kick in,” Burton says. But a switch problem and an automatic transfer switch that did not work as expected led to the shutdown of the generator. As a result, a hoist at one of the mine’s shafts could not run, so two mining crews had


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no way to return to the surface. The miners stayed in an underground refuge station until around 11 a.m. when the power returned. All workers emerged safely from the mine. This was not the first time such an event had occurred at this mine. In September 2012, an earthquake sparked a fire and trapped workers underground for about 24 hours. There have been 12 earthquakes in the region measuring at three or higher on the Richter scale over the past 35 years, according to information from Natural Resources Canada. But Burton maintains that incidents such as the September 5 power outage are relatively rare at PotashCorp’s mines. “Safety is number one at all these sites,” Burton stresses. “The procedures, protocols are built in that if anything is not working the way it is supposed to, everybody knows where to go and what to do.” — By Jeff Cottrill

Current. An additional charge against the company was dropped. The following day, Darcy Rask Construction Inc. in Birch Hills was ordered to pay $23,800 for a fatal incident on September 15, 2014. An employee was killed when a tractor’s crane struck an overhead high-voltage line near Coleville. The Ministry fined Saskatoon employer Dave Bernier $2,800 on August 31 for failing to make sure that employees used protective headwear and fall-arrest gear. The third conviction followed an incident on January 14 of this year, when an inspector observed three of Bernier’s workers shingling a roof without wearing fall-protection equipment.

DEALERSHIP PLEADS GUILTY SASKATOON — An auto dealership in Saskatoon was fined $35,000 on August 18 over an incident last year that left one of its workers with a broken arm. According to a statement dated August 25 from the Saskatchewan Ministry of Labour Relations and Workplace Safety, an employee of Jubilee Ford Sales (1983) Ltd. was trying to repair an overhead door when a loose anchor bracket caused the door to fall onto the worker’s forearm and fracture it in several places. The company pleaded guilty to violating sub-clause 25(2)(b) of Saskatchewan’s Occupational Health and Safety Regulations, which deals with maintenance and repair of equipment. Jubilee faced two additional charges, but these were later dropped.

MINE INCIDENT CLAIMS ONE VANSCOY — A mine worker has died following an equipment-related incident at a potash mine in the village of Vanscoy, Saskatchewan on August 8. Agrium Inc. employee Chad Wiklun, 29, was working at the underground mine at about 2:45 a.m. when he got caught between two pieces of heavy mining equipment and sustained serious injuries, according to Todd Steen, the worksite’s general manager. Wiklun succumbed to his injuries on August 10.

The mining operation shut down immediately and remained closed for several days afterwards. Safety officers from the provincial Ministry of Labour Relations and Workplace Safety are investigating the incident. The Agrium Vanscoy potash mine has experienced several mishaps during the past decade. On July 13, 2013, a construction worker at the mine was killed after falling 18 metres from a scaffold. Other fatalities occurred on August 31, 2006, when a falling rock fatally injured a boring-machine operator, and on May 11, 2010, when a piece of equipment fell six storeys and struck a 59-year-old employee. An incident that could have been fatal occurred on February 14, 2014, when a fire broke out at the mine, trapping 54 miners in underground emergency shelters. But there were no injuries or deaths.

WORKER DIES FROM FALL REGINA — Workplace safety officials are investigating a fatality that occurred on August 22 at an oilfield near Alameda, Saskatchewan. Dustin Pratt, a 27-year-old employee of Panther Drilling Corporation, succumbed to his injuries sustained from a fall at the oil rig. Officers from the RCMP’s Carnduff branch attended the scene. Laura McKnight, a spokesperson for the provincial Ministry of Labour Relations and Workplace Safety, confirms that oh&s authorities are investigating the tragedy.

SIX MANITOBA COMPANIES FINED WINNIPEG — The Workplace Safety and Health branch (WSH) of Manitoba’s Growth, Enterprise and Trade ministry announced on August 16 that it had issued fines totalling more than $111,000 to the following six employers from March to mid-July for contravening Manitoba’s Workplace Safety and Health Act: • Dunsire Building Services Ltd. was issued a fine of $18,000 on March 3 over an incident on July 15, 2013 in which an employee fell from an eightfoot ladder while trying to repair a

sign at a strip mall. Dunsire pleaded guilty to failing to provide supervision for an apprentice; Glendale Industries Limited was fined $15,000 on April 28, after pleading guilty to failing to implement safe work procedures for installing a work platform above sodium-chlorate dryers. A worker with the Brandon firm was seriously injured by sparks from a hand grinder, which ignited sodium chlorate on his pants on April 11, 2013; Amsted Canada Inc. was fined  $32,550 on June 2, after an employee was burned by a steam explosion that occurred when his slag shovel accidentally added moisture to molten metal on May 1, 2014. Amsted pleaded guilty to failing to implement safe work procedures for removing slag; Plains Industrial Hemp Processing Ltd. was given a penalty of $20,000 on June 22 for failing to ensure that a processing machine had a safeguard to keep workers from contacting moving parts. A worker’s right arm was seriously injured when he tried to remove hemp from a jammed machine in Gilbert Plains on February 3, 2014; V & R Electrical Ltd. was penalized  $12,550 on June 27 after an employee suffered serious face and neck burns by an arc flash when removing electrical cable from a splitter box on May 2, 2014. The Portage la Prairie firm pleaded guilty to failing to train workers on working safely with energized electrical equipment; and EcoLogic Spray Foam Insulation was sentenced to a fine of $13,050 on July 14, after pleading guilty to failing to develop an asbestos-control plan to stop asbestos from contaminating the air. A worker with the company had trouble breathing after removing insulation on June 6, 2013.

FARM FATALITY PROMPTS PENALTY ST. CATHARINES — A judge fined a farm owner $18,000 on August 26 in connection with a fatality last year. According to a court bulletin from the Ontario Ministry of Labour, the incident occurred during construction of a bridge over a ravine at White Meadows

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Farms in St. Catharines on January 22, 2015. A group of workers was trying to move a concrete block weighing nearly 1,300 kilograms onto a pad at the top of the ravine. As a tractor was lifting the block, the chain holding the load slipped off the tractor’s forks and the block rolled down the ravine slope, crushing another worker. A Ministry investigation found that the owner had failed to ensure that his employees had been moving the block safely.

SEXUAL-ASSAULT CHARGES LAID OTTAWA — The Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) National Investigative Service has charged a naval officer with sexual assault against a fellow military member — one day after laying the same charge against a sergeant with the military police operating from the same base. Master Seaman Daniel Cooper of the Naval Fleet School (Atlantic) at Canadian Forces Base Halifax was charged with one count of sexual assault and another of abuse of subordinates on September 13. Cooper is accused of assaulting another CAF member aboard the HMCS Athabaskan last November, according to Lieutenant Blake Patterson, a public-affairs officer with the CAF Provost Marshal and Military Police Group. “They were participating in an exercise called Trident Juncture,” Lieutenant Patterson says. “It was an international exercise.”


On September 12, Sergeant Kevin MacIntyre of the Military Police Unit at the Halifax base was charged with sexual assault against a fellow CAF member. A statement from the Department of National Defence (DND) states that this incident had occurred during another international exercise, which took place in Glasgow, Scotland in September 2015. “As members of the Canadian Armed Forces and the policing community, we hold military police to a very high standard of professional and personal conduct, in Canada or abroad, on or off military duty,” says commanding officer LieutenantColonel Francis Bolduc of the National Investigation Service. “These charges reflect our ongoing commitment to support victims and defend against sexual misconduct in the Canadian Armed Forces.” Sexual assault and harassment among members have been a priority for Canadian military police this year through a plan known as Operation HONOUR. A progress report published last month reveals that the military had completed investigations of 51 sexual-misconduct complaints submitted since April, resulting in 30 members receiving some form of discipline. The report also says that the rate of complaints of misconduct has increased by 22 per cent and that the army has been taking additional disciplinary action against such misconduct.

MANUFACTURER GETS HEFTY FINE BRAMPTON — A manufacturer of metal automotive parts was fined $270,000 on August 17, following a worker’s permanent injury by a robotic device more than three years ago. According to a court bulletin from the Ontario Ministry of Labour, the incident took place at the Matcor Automotive Inc. factory in Brampton on January 15, 2013, when a supervisor instructed a worker to repair the tooling and overheating electrode in a robot cell. The worker entered the cell without locking the power out first, and as the employee was positioned on a railing by a conveyor belt near the tooling, the robotic device began pressing against his back, causing a serious injury. The Ontario Court of Justice in Brampton later determined that the factory’s workers typically did not lock out or tag out equipment if they thought it could be fixed quickly and deemed that the company did not supervise the workplace’s employees sufficiently. Matcor was found guilty of failing to protect the safety of workers around robotic equipment through information, instruction and supervision.

ATTACK AGAINST WORKER SPURS GUILTY PLEA BURLINGTON — An agency providing support and mentalhealth services for youths and children in Oakville, Ontario was fined $125,000 on August 16 for an incident in which two workers had been physically assaulted by a youth. The attack occurred at the Syl Apps Youth Centre on May 4, 2014, when an employee of Kinark Child and Family Services was directing a male resident to return to his room, says a court bulletin from the Ontario Ministry of Labour. The boy entered SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2016

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the staff office and struck the worker repeatedly. A co-worker tried to stop the assault, and both employees received physical and psychological injuries. The targeted victim had recently begun a work contract at the Centre’s detention and custody unit for boys. Kinark pleaded guilty in court to failing to provide information, instruction and supervision to protect employees from violence.

INSPECTIONS CURB INJURIES TORONTO — A recent paper by the Institute for Work & Health (IWH) in Toronto concludes that government inspections with potential orders and penalties are effective in motivating employers to improve health and safety standards. Published on June 7 on the American Journal of Industrial Medicine’s website, the paper is the result of examining 43 previous studies on oh&s regulation published between 1990 and 2013. “One of the key takeaways from the paper is that when a labour inspector imposes an order on a workplace, the result of that is that the workplace is safer afterwards,” IWH president Dr. Cam Mustard says.

The research team, led by IWH senior scientist Dr. Emile Tompa, found that awareness campaigns help to reduce workplace accidents. His study also classified an order as a type of penalty and concluded that orders alone are effective in making workplaces safer. “These findings reinforce the importance of regulators being out in the field and identifying, citing and penalizing noncompliant organizations,” Dr. Tompa says. Ontario has roughly 350 labour inspectors inspecting 250,000 workplaces. A typical year includes about 80,000 field visits, resulting in about 140,000 orders. “It is not that the enforcement of regulation works and nothing else works; it is that enforcement is just one of the arrows in the quiver,” says Dr. Mustard, who notes that the research is motivated by a long-running debate about whether it is appropriate for governments to regulate workplace safety. “There will be stakeholders in every labour market who argue that all of this work by labour inspectors doesn’t make a difference, so you should stop doing it,” he says. “And then there will be stakeholders who say there is nothing more important than having a labour in-

spector, like a policeman, come around and check around and make sure things are good. So it is important to have an answer to this question.”

DEMOLITION FIRM PENALIZED TORONTO — A construction firm was fined $50,000 on August 11, in connection with a worker injury two years ago. According to a court bulletin from the Ontario Ministry of Labour, Sean Teperman Consulting Corp. was demolishing a building in midtown Toronto on April 10, 2014, when a new employee was instructed to stand in the open-box bed of a dump truck to serve as a spotter for an excavator driver, who was moving debris into the truck. During this task, the excavator’s bucket struck the worker. A subsequent Ministry investigation determined that the excavator operator had not been able to see the employee at the time of the incident. The company pled guilty to violating the Construction Projects Regulation, which states that workers must not remain in vehicles being loaded or unloaded if their safety is at risk.

PRISON RIOT PROMPTS SECURITY CALLS WATERVILLE — A recent riot at the Waterville Youth Facility in Waterville, Nova Scotia has led to demands for improved safety and staffing from the Nova Scotia Government & General Employees Union (NSGEU), which represents the prison’s employees through NSGEU Local 4. Four youth workers were hospitalized with serious injuries on September 4 when inmates of the facility launched an attack, according to an NSGEU statement. At about 7:30 p.m., one of the employees was attacked. Four other workers came to the employee’s aid, but other inmates rushed from their rooms at the same time in a way that had apparently been coordinated and assaulted the workers. An incident update from the Nova Scotia Department of Justice states that an internal investigation of the incident is under way, as is another investigation by the RCMP. “Our youth workers do hero’s work every day. Very concerning when our staff get injured doing their jobs,” the Department posted on its Twitter account on September 5. Two of the offenders, aged 19 and 18, have reportedly been charged with taking part in a riot, with the younger one also facing two counts of assault while carrying a weapon. In a September 7 statement, NSGEU president Jason

MacLean calls on the provincial government to take action in response to the attack. “What we would like to see is a thorough debriefing and consultation following this violent workplace incident, with recommendations and timelines for improving safety at the facility as soon as possible,” MacLean says. “This would include training and enhancement of the health and safety committee.” MacLean adds that the Waterville facility has experienced a steady increase in violent offenders, along with a decrease in staff numbers and a gradual deterioration in safety procedures. Following the incident, NSGEU scheduled a meeting for September 8 involving union members who work at the facility, MacLean and the union’s health and safety officer. MacLean commends the workers for assisting their colleague under attack, but warns that such violent incidents can lead to long-lasting physical and psychological trauma. “Youth workers should not fear for their lives when they go to work. The health and safety of the women and men who work in the facility should be the priority of the employer,” he says. — By Jeff Cottrill

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WORKER KILLED IN WAREHOUSE BRAMPTON — The Ontario Ministry of Labour is investigating a fatal incident at a Gap Inc. Canada warehouse. Peel Regional Police (PRP) officers were called to the distribution centre shortly before 11 a.m. on August 9 after a 60 year-old male worker was killed in the warehouse’s business area. The PRP’s Major Collision Bureau and the 22 Division’s Criminal Investigation Bureau are investigating the incident, police say. Gap spokesperson Heather Hopkins expresses condolences on the company’s behalf and adds that it is working closely with local law-enforcement agencies to investigate this incident.

FATALITY PREVENTABLE: REPORT MONTREAL — A report from the Commission des normes, de l’équité, de la santé et de la sécurité du travail (CNESST), which investigates workplace incidents in Quebec, has concluded that a fatality at Montreal’s Champlain Bridge last year could have been avoided. On September 15, 2015, 44-year-old Dany Cléroux, a site foreman with construction firm Groupe TNT, was working on the bridge’s ice-control structure when the platform he was on toppled over, sending him into the St. Lawrence River. The report, released on August 10, says the workers misused four platform hoists in a way that stopped the platform from moving properly. Cléroux slipped off the platform while trying to untangle a chain, and his fall-arrest gear was not attached to anything. As well, Groupe TNT had no safety protocol in place for platform installation and removal. CNESST adds that it has forwarded the report to l’Association de la construction du Québec and other labour organizations to help prevent similar fatalities.

PIZZERIA EMPLOYEE KNIFED DARTMOUTH — The Halifax Regional Police (HRP) have arrested a man and woman who allegedly injured a male restaurant employee with a knife during



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a robbery on August 3. The worker was on the job at Robert’s Pizza and Donair in Dartmouth late in the evening when the pair entered the restaurant and attacked him while demanding cash, according to an HRP statement. The employee sustained deep cuts to his hands and arms, and the robbers fled the restaurant with an unspecified amount of money. Officers from the HRP’s East Division were notified of the incident just before midnight and arrived to find the worker bleeding from his wounds. The worker received medical treatment at the scene and was sent to a hospital. Public sources led police to a Dartmouth apartment building, where the HRP’s Integrated General Investigation Section questioned a man and woman about the incident. The following day, Lemarco Sparks, 27, was charged with robbery, disguise with intent, uttering threats, assault with a weapon and possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose, while Stephanie Nicholson, 23, was charged with robbery.

EXPLOSION INJURES WORKER SPRING VALLEY — Workplace safety authorities are investigating a minor explosion in which an employee in Prince Edward Island was injured on August 11. Emergency medical services transported the 24-year-old worker to the Prince County Hospital, where his injuries were deemed serious, but not lifethreatening, notes a statement from the

East Prince detachment of the RCMP. The police were notified of the explosion and responded at about 11 a.m. Safety officials from the Prince Edward Island Public Service Commission are investigating the incident.

INCIDENT RESULTS IN CHARGES GANDER — An industrial company is facing seven oh&s charges as a result of a 2014 incident at a quarry east of Benton, Newfoundland. Gander-based L. McCurdy Ready Mix Limited is accused of failing to equip rock-crushing machinery with fire extinguishers, as well as dust-suppression and guarding mechanisms, according to an August 23 statement from Service N.L. The firm, which supplies aggregate, concrete and concrete-based products, is also charged with failing to cooperate with an oh&s officer. The charges followed an investigation by Service N.L.’s oh&s branch, although there were no reported injuries in the incident. McCurdy was expected to make its first court appearance at the Gander Provincial Court on September 6. Follow us on Twitter @OHSCanada Many of the preceding items are based on stories from our sister publication, canadian






a weekly e-newsletter that provides detailed coverage of Canadian oh&s and workers’ compensation issues. For more information, please call (416) 442-2122 or toll-free (800) 668-2374.

So, what’s on your mind? Ever wonder what other oh&s types are thinking about? Find out by making our website poll at a regular stop.

Will you file a complaint if you have been sexually harassed at work? Yes 53% No 25% Maybe 22% Total Votes 446

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DISPATCHES Lone wolf attacks mine worker in Saskatchewan

yourself as big as possible, make yourself intimidating-looking and slowly back away if you can,” he adds. “If it is attacking you, fight with all you have got.”


Jeff Cottrill is editor of canadian occupational health & safety news.

By Jeff Cottrill

worker was mauled by a lone timber wolf at the Cigar Lake uranium mine in northern Saskatchewan in the early morning hours of August 29. The 26-year-old contract employee with Cameco Corporation was outside taking a break between the main camp and the contractors’ residential camp when the animal attacked without any provocation, says Gord Struthers, Cameco’s director of external communications. “One of the security people at the site observed it, and she acted very quickly to get the wolf away from him.” The security staffer immediately notified the site’s emergency-response team, who tended to the victim’s injuries. The worker was airlifted to a hospital in Saskatoon. Conservation officers with the province’s Ministry of Environment were informed of the attack later that morning, according to Kevin Harrison, a conservation officer for the city of Prince Albert. “They were up at the mine site, seeing the location of the attack, and conducted an investigation up there,” he says. The conservation officers also destroyed three animals in the vicinity of the mine and held a town-hall meeting with the site’s employees to reinforce messages about safety around wildlife. Struthers says the company has wildlife-management programs at each of its remote operations to ensure that workers know the risks and train them on how to respond to attacks. “We also manage our waste in particular ways to make sure that it minimizes the attraction of animals,” he adds. According to Harrison, animal attacks are very uncommon in Saskatchewan. “Typically, wolves like to keep away from humans,” he says. But the province does have two previous confirmed cases of wolf attacks. On New Year’s Eve of 2004, a wolf lunged at Fred Desjarlais while he was on his way home from the Cameco uranium mine in Key Lake. Desjarlais survived the attack, but required stitches and rabies shots. In November 2005, Kenton Carnegie was killed by a pack of wolves while walking near Points North Landing, a mining supply camp where the geology student had been working in a co-op program through the University of Waterloo in Ontario. “If you are working in rough country, you have to always be cautious and be aware of your surroundings,” Harrison cautions. He advises any worker approached by a wolf that appears threatening or acts strangely to stay calm. “Make



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Firm’s financial condition affects safety: study By Jean Lian


recent study from the University of Texas at Dallas concludes that there is a corresponding relationship between workplace injury rates and a firm’s financial state. Using injury data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ annual Survey of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses, researchers examined the sensitivity of workplace-injury rates to a firm’s available financial resources. The findings indicate that injury rates rise along with increases in debt and negative cash-flow shocks. Conversely, injury rates decrease with positive cash-flow shocks. A firm’s value also decreases substantially with an increase in injury rates. “A huge part of the labour force has significant exposure to injury risk,” Dr. Malcolm Wardlaw, assistant professor of finance and managerial economics at the Naveen Jindal School of Management, says in a statement from the University of Texas at Dallas, dated September 6. “For these workers, getting injured can radically impact their overall welfare. Moreover, the costs of these injuries are borne by both the employees and the companies they work for.” He stresses that the financial condition of a firm is one of the factors that need to be considered when determining priorities in safety. “When you are having issues in cash flow, you often end up servicing the debt at the expense of softer claims that are more difficult to value or have values that are realized over the long term,” Dr. Wardlaw explains. He cites maintaining equipment, replacing old parts and machines, buying equipment with better safety features and automating dangerous tasks as some of the investments that firms make to reduce the risk of on-the-job injury. Companies also devote resources to less tangible activities that affect safety, such as training and supervision. “In recent years, there has been a broad recognition that investments in safety are important for the employees and the shareholders. Finding the best way to finance that investment is not always easy,” Dr. Wardlaw says. A study examining the association between profitability and the incidence rate of occupational injuries in underground coal mines in the United States between 1992 and 2008, published in 2013, yields similar results. Based on employment and injury databases from the Mine Safety and Health Administration and mine-specific data from the United States Energy Information Administration, the study

found an inverse relationship between profitability and occupational injuries. “These results might be partially due to factors that affect both profitability and safety, such as management or engineering practices, and partially due to lower investments in safety by less profitable mines, which could imply that some financially stressed mines might be so focused on survival that they forgo investing in safety,” the study concludes. Jean Lian is editor of

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Tribunal grants a stay on armoured-car directive By Jeff Cottrill


he Occupational Health and Safety Tribunal Canada has granted a stay to security firm Brink’s Canada on an August 18 directive, which had ordered the company’s Edmonton branch to abandon the controversial “All off ” model for armoured-car personnel. Brink’s had received the order from Jason Elliott, a Labour Canada health and safety officer, who wrote that the practice of having all guards exit an armoured car during pickups and drop-offs increased the risk of ambush from robbers. The company, which is appealing the order, received the stay on September 12 following a series of written requests and telephone calls, according to a press release from the company, which called the initial ruling “improper” and based on a misreading of the Canada Labour Code. “They said it is a danger, and we don’t agree,” says Paul Murray, vice president of human resources and employee relations for Brink’s. In the “All off ” method, an armoured car carries a twoperson crew and both guards exit the vehicle when delivering or picking up goods. Brink’s adopted the model last autumn. The company refers to the practice as “proven in Canada, having been used by other competitors in the industry for over a decade.” Murray does not specify why the company believes “All off ” to be safe or why it is fighting to keep the model. Mike Armstrong — a national staff representative with Unifor, the union that represents armoured-car guards nationally — accuses Brink’s and similar security companies of trying to save money. “It is pure economics,” Armstrong says. “You only have two people in the truck, and let’s say it is $30 an hour for a person and benefits and pension. You’ve got three of them in there, that is $90.” According to Armstrong, there have been 15 violent armoured-car robberies across Canada over the past two years, and every one of them involved a two-person crew. The safer alternative is to have a third employee, typically the driver, remain on the armoured car during stops to look out for suspicious people or vehicles. He adds that the vast majority of armoured-car robberies are committed by organized criminals. The safety of armoured-car guards came under the spotlight in Edmonton after the fatal attempted robbery of a

Garda World Security truck on July 8. One of the would-be robbers was shot by a guard; the other is still at large. Despite the temporary reprieve for Brink’s, Armstrong remains hopeful that the appeal will not succeed. “Our union believes that the all-off model puts workers in danger,” he says. “This is just a little bit like a step backwards.”

Exercise curbs appetite increase from cognitive tasks By Jean Lian


fter a long and gruelling day at the office, working out may be the last thing on a person’s mind. But exercise may be the key to curbing appetite after a long day at work, especially for people who engage in cognitive tasks but remain sedentary, according to researchers at the University of Alabama (UAB) at Birmingham. “The modern work environment is highly sedentary and cognitively demanding,” says the study’s lead author, William Neumeier, Ph.D., who is pursuing post-doctoral studies through the UAB School of Health Professions. According to a statement from the university dated August 22, previous studies have shown that mentally demanding tasks affect the brain’s energy demands and increases in food intake are common following such tasks. To explore whether glucose and lactate produced through exercise instead of through food consumption could provide additional energy for brain function, researchers asked 38 undergraduate students, who were divided into two groups, to complete a graduate-level entrance exam. Following the exam, one group rested for 15 minutes, while the other group performed 15 minutes of high-intensity interval training on a treadmill. Participants also spent 35 minutes relaxing as a control condition the week before. Afterward, each group was offered a buffet lunch of pizza. Those who took the exam and rested for 15 minutes ate an average of 100 calories more than when they relaxed without performing mental work, which reinforces previous studies’ findings that working our brains expends energy and leads to hunger. Participants who exercised after the exam ate 25 calories less than when they relaxed for 35 minutes and then ate. While blood glucose remained stable in participants following exercise, their lactate levels increased significantly, which may have replenished the brain’s energy needs. “One possible explanation is exercise’s effect on hunger and satiety hormones may decrease energy intake after activities that stimulate one’s appetite,” Dr. Neumeier says. Follow us on Twitter @OHSCanada

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n the evening of July 20, operators in the Husky Energy control room detected certain “pressure anomalies” in sections of one of its oil pipelines spanning the North Saskatchewan River. Although such monitoring “blips” are common during start-up operations, inspection crews were dispatched to the site as a precaution, but found no evidence of a breach, according to the July 26 incident-response report posted on the company’s website. After further analysis, Husky initiated its “safe shutdown” procedures at about 6:00 a.m. the following morning. The valves on both sides of the river closed automatically as part of the operation, but the company was too late. Between 200 and 250 cubic metres of heavy oil and diluent had already spilled into the river. That has not been the only bad news on the pipeline front in recent months. In July, 380,000 litres of light petroleum condensate leaked from a pipeline operated by ConocoPhillips Canada near its Resthaven gas plant in northwestern Alberta. In March 2015, an estimated 17,000 barrels of the conden-



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sate used to dilute heavy oil escaped into the muskeg south of Peace River, Alberta, from a three-inch pipeline operated by the Murphy Oil Corporation. And in July 2015, five million litres of a bitumen-water-sand mixture oozed across the tundra from a Nexen Energy pipeline south of Fort McMurray. These incidents might convey the impression that Canadian pipelines have been failing at epidemic rates. But recent statistics compiled by the Alberta Energy Regulator (AER) indicate that the total number of pipeline incidents — ranging from pinhole-sized leaks to major ruptures and spills — decreased by approximately 37 per cent from 2006 to 2015. Over the same time, the total length of operational pipeline in the province increased by 20 per cent. According to the AER’s Report 2013B: Pipeline Performance in Alberta 19902013, “very large pipeline releases are relatively few.” The improvement is largely due “to more stringent [regulatory] requirements, an increased focus on integrity issues, industry education, improvements in inspection programs and a greater focus on pipeline safety within the energy industry,” says Monica Hermary, public-affairs advisor for the AER

as in-service pressure testing, mass-balance monitoring and instrument-based data collection. In addition, all personnel must be properly trained in leak detection and their competency evaluated and retested on a regular, ongoing basis. For its part, the AER conducts inspections to ensure that operators are in compliance and have proper leak-detection strategies and preventive pipeline-maintenance programs in place. “Our inspections also focus on identifying high-risk activities, such as water crossings and inactive pipelines, to prevent pipeline incidents from occurring,” Hermary adds.

in Calgary. Amendments to the province’s Pipeline Regulation, passed in 2005, require operators to undertake greater pipeline surveillance and leak-detection action. But that does not mean everything is under control. “Detecting leaks is an ongoing challenge for pipeline operators, and the industry needs to do more,” Hermary says. In an operational advisory bulletin released in July, the AER said operators must increase their focus on systems monitoring and operator training. Since its inception in June 2013, the AER has investigated 23 pipeline releases. According to those investigations, “improper leak detection” was cited as a significant contributing factor in eight of them. Most of the lines that failed were upstream lines transporting effluents and salty process water produced by oil wells. The investigators also found that the company personnel responsible for leak detection either were not sufficiently trained or simply failed to recognize that a leak was occurring. On average, it took 48 days to respond to and isolate the pipelines for these eight releases, the AER bulletin notes. The AER requires an integrated approach to leak detection that includes direct visual assessments — patrolling pipeline right-of-ways for evidence of leakage or other issues that could affect the integrity of the pipeline — as well

DOLLARS AND SENSE “While it is hard to put an exact number on it, perhaps five per cent of pipelines could be considered ‘high-risk’ and prone to failure,” says corrosion and materials specialist Daryl Foley, president of Group 10 Engineering in Calgary. Another 20 to 25 per cent are considered lower-risk, but a leak, spill or rupture could cause significant environmental repercussions. His firm helps oil and gas companies assess the hazards posed by their pipelines, tanks, pressurized equipment and other physical assets. Not all pipelines present the same risks. “First of all, you need to understand the difference between the big pipelines operated by the oil and gas transmission companies and the thousands of smaller-diameter lines that the upstream producers use to transport their products, process materials and wastes back and forth from wells to field-processing facilities,” Foley explains. Those upstream companies are focused on exploration and production; their pipelines are just one of the many assets they manage. And that upstream infrastructure is aging. “Some of it was built back in the 1950s,” he says, “while much is equipped with less than state-of-the-art protection systems. We know there are going to be leaks and there are going to be failures somewhere.” In a tight economy, upstream operators have to prioritize high-risk situations — the pipeline leak and rupture scenarios that pose the greatest environmental and health threats — to ensure that they are getting the biggest impact for every dollar in their integrity-management budgets. “It can cost between $60,000 and $100,000 to inspect and assess each small, upstream pipeline on a well-by-well basis,” Foley says. On the other hand, it costs about $150,000 to find and repair the average small leak and clean up any spilled product. “It is not surprising, then, that many operators gamble,” he suggests. One of his clients manages some 27,000 lines, many of which are just two or three inches in diameter and each averaging just a kilometre to a kilometre-and-a-half in length. “They can only afford, economically, to inspect a fraction of their pipelines and would quickly go out of business if they tried to do it all,” Foley adds. BULL’S EYE ON HIGH RISKS Risk assessment is a multi-step process that can show companies where to allocate their resources to prevent leaks most effectively. First, the inherent risks posed by the equipment,

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transmission-line companies as well as the volumes and in Canada. commodities that a particu“Maintenance and monitorlar pipeline carries, need to ing throughout the entire life be identified. Sour gas, crude cycle of a pipeline is a top prioil, salty or fresh water, multiority for our industry,” Smyth phase oilfield wastes and resays, noting that companies fined products each pose their have automatic leak-detection own risks. alarm systems, automatic That is followed by mapshut-off devices and devices ping the location of the pipethat continuously monitor the line, local topography, water internal condition of the pipe. crossings, various land uses The association and its memand population centres along bers are continually seeking the route, followed by an asout opportunities to improve sessment of existing safethe sensitivity of leak-detecguards, the effectiveness of tion technology, he adds. the operator’s integrity-manIn 2015, CEPA members agement program and any posted a 99.999 per cent safety upgrades that can be made. record. “This record can be atFinally, consider the full range tributed to the fact that CEPA of environmental and health member companies are collabconsequences that may arise if orating on a national strategy something goes wrong. to develop best-in-class pipeline leak detection To date, one of the “biggest voids” has been “The question is technologies, ” Smyth says. Integrity First® is an identifying which of the thousands of pipeline industry-led program established by CEPA to water crossings are the most vulnerable, Folnot if a pipeline improve safety and environmental performance ey says. “We needed a leveraged system to do will spill, and to strengthen the pipeline industry’s ena ‘first pass’ and identify significant sites for a gagement and communications. deep assessment.” but when.” To fill the gap, Group 10 has developed a pipeline water-crossing classification tool to help operators NOT IF, BUT WHEN “laser-focus” their resources on high-impact areas through But not everyone agrees that big transmission pipeline comranking various risk factors, including the width and flow of panies are doing enough. “The question is not if a pipeline will spill, but when,” says the watercourse, sensitive fish and wildlife habitats, recrePatrick DeRochie, the climate and energy program manager ational or commercial water use and withdrawals for drinkfor Environmental Defence in Toronto. The non-governmening water and human consumption. tal organization is particularly concerned about the risks of When it comes to preventing leaks at significant walong-term contamination that the transportation of oil and ter crossings or in densely populated areas, “there should gas by pipeline poses to drinking-water systems and terresbe zero tolerance for high-impact failures,” Foley stresses. trial and aquatic ecosystems. “When a pipeline spills, only a “Whether you are operating a big transmission pipeline or portion of the oil is ever actually recovered, ” DeRochie says. one of thousands of smaller upstream lines, you must know Environmental Defence opposes TransCanada’s constructhe condition of the pipes running through those areas with tion of the Energy East Pipeline, which will transport about 100 per cent certainty.” Despite some recent high-profile incidents, Foley has con- 1.1 million barrels of oil a day from Alberta and Saskatchewan fidence in the ability of big transmission companies to pre- to refineries in Eastern Canada and a marine terminal in New vent leaks, detect problems and respond quickly to serious Brunswick. While the industry spends millions every year tryreleases. “Their pipelines are their primary asset. They have ing to improve pipeline integrity and leak detection, “there are the staff, the experience and the focus needed to monitor, limits to what can be done,” DeRochie says. “Even the most riginspect and maintain them. If a pipeline was going through orous combination of remote leak detection, ground and aerial my backyard, I would pick a transmission pipeline company patrols and external sensors is not foolproof.” hands down over an upstream operator.” The environmental risks are compounded by the potential The numbers seem to back him up. “For more than a de- threats to human health following a major spill. “Bitumen cade, our industry has seen a steady decline in the number of must be diluted with highly toxic condensate chemicals to natural gas and liquids pipeline incidents per 1,000 kilome- create dilbit,” DeRochie notes. If spilled, this diluent sepatres,” says Patrick Smyth, vice president of safety and engi- rates from the bitumen and evaporates to form a toxic cloud neering for the Calgary-based Canadian Energy Pipeline As- of benzene, toluene and other carcinogenic compounds that sociation (CEPA), which represents all the major gas and oil can create an acute health risk for communities and first re 24


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sponders in the area. The remaining bitumen, unlike conventional crude oil, will sink and coat river and lake bottoms, complicating cleanup efforts. The group also disagrees with much of the reassuring safety data that the industry has compiled. “Oil and gas companies continue to tell us that pipelines are safe and oil spills are rare, but the evidence suggests otherwise,” DeRochie argues. “There were 69 pipeline spills in Canada in 2015 — that is more than one per week,” he adds, citing numbers from the statistical summary of pipeline occurrences in 2015 by the Transportation Safety Board of Canada. “These are alarming numbers coming from an industry trying to reassure the public about pipeline safety.” Environment Defence claims that the leak-detection systems are inadequate. According to statistics compiled by the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration in the United States, remote sensors detected only five per cent of pipeline spills. “In last June’s heavy oil spill in the North Saskatchewan River, Husky Energy took a staggering 14 hours after discovering the leak to even notify the provincial government,” DeRochie says. “This is unacceptable, especially to the 70,000 residents whose drinking water was disrupted.” FROM INSIDE OUT Preventing incidents before they occur is a critical component of Enbridge’s ongoing commitment to safety, says Len LeBlanc, director of integrity systems for Enbridge Inc. in

Edmonton. The company operates the world’s longest crude oil and liquids transportation network, as well as Canada’s largest natural-gas distribution system. “As part of our multilayered prevention strategy, we regularly use in-line inspection tools that allow us to monitor the health of our pipeline systems from the inside out,” he explains. Prevention activities include anti-corrosion coatings, cathodic protection (the application of a low-level electrical current to stop external corrosion), the interior cleaning of pipes, aerial and ground patrols and preventive-maintenance inspections. The potential threats that, over time, can deteriorate a pipe fall into one or more of the following categories: • metal loss or corrosion; • pipe deformation, such as denting caused by a thirdparty digging near a pipeline; • cracking stemming from steel manufacturing or forming processes; • cracking related to exposure to natural environments; and/or • incorrect operations. According to the AER, the majority of pipeline incidents are integrity-related, with internal corrosion ranked as the leading cause of some 36 per cent of incidents in 2015, followed by external corrosion at 13 per cent. This is not surprising, as the vast majority of pipelines — 90 per cent — are made of steel. Other causes of pipeline incidents include pipeline valve or fitting failures (13 per cent) and external damage (10 per cent).

MAKING STRIDES In the field of spill prevention and detection, TransCanada is developing and testing a number of new technologies, including “smart pigs” to inspect for anomalies, corrosionresistant coatings, automated ultrasonic testing and electromagnetic acoustic transduction to detect hairline cracks in natural-gas pipelines. According to Mark Cooper, senior lead of media relations with TransCanada, the company has also pioneered the use of high-strength steel, such as the X-100 grade, for large-diameter steel pipelines, which can transport greater volumes of natural gas or liquids at increased pressures, while reducing transportation costs. “We are pushing the envelope on automated welding systems,” which can produce more consistent, high-quality welds, particularly in harsh conditions and short construction seasons, he adds. TransCanada and Enbridge have also teamed up to evaluate some “cutting-edge technologies” for external leak detection at the C-FER research facility in Edmonton. These include vapour-sensing tubes, fibre-optic distributed temperature-sensing systems, hydrocarbon sensing-cables and fibre-optic distributed acoustic sensing systems. Technology aside, protecting people in the event of a spill is a top priority at Enbridge, according to Len LeBlanc,

director of integrity systems for Enbridge Inc. in Edmonton. The company provides free training to first responders along its pipelines as part of the Emergency Responder Education program and corresponds regularly with local communities as part of the Public Awareness Program. “Our goal is to prevent spills from occurring in the first place,” says LeBlanc, but if a concern is identified, the pipeline is shut down, local valves are closed and trained responders equipped with the appropriate personal protective equipment will respond to assess the specific situation. The company also undertakes air monitoring at the spill site and surrounding areas and works with local emergency services if public evacuations are recommended. On the regulatory front, the National Energy Board and the Canadian Energy Pipeline Association established a Joint Committee on Issues of Mutual Interest for Federally Regulated Pipelines in April to advance the “safety culture across the industry,” according to Darin Barter, communications officer with the National Energy Board in Calgary. According to the Committee’s terms of reference, members will identify regulatory process efficiency and optimization opportunities that span service standards, improvements in regulatory burden and clarity, pipeline performance measures and targets and application processes.

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“The main cause of external or contact damage is a lack of due diligence carried out to identify buried pipelines in an area before digging or other ground disturbance occurs,” Hermary says. The AER is currently working with the industry on a “more robust” data-collection system for pipeline incidents to facilitate better identification of trends and areas of higher susceptibility. “Operators must understand the risks inherent to their pipeline system and factor in the monitoring and integrity management needed to control the risks,” Hermary adds.

curred in lines constructed in the 1950s, 15 in lines built in the 1960s, 10 in lines from the early 1970s and four incidents in undated lines or structures. While the statistics may indicate systemic problems, experts say they can be overcome. “Generally speaking, pipeline steel doesn’t wear out,” Kuprewicz says. Quality-control problems dating back to the year of manufacture can introduce some vintage threats, but one can stay ahead of them with a proactive inspection and maintenance program before they fail. Unless there is a manufacturing imperfection or construction anomaly, damage or failure to protect it against corrosion, “most pipelines should last forever,” he adds.

FACTORS BEHIND FAILURES With more than 40 years’ experience in Many in the sector troubleshooting problems and investimisunderstand the gating mishaps in the pipeline business, QUESTIONABLE TECHNIQUE Richard Kuprewicz, president of Accufacts technical limitations The leak-detection provisions promulgated Inc. in Redmond, Washington, knows that of mass-balancing in Canada are based, in large part, on the a dedicated safety-culture approach can premise that one can spot and prevent leaks work. “Integrity management is not all that technology. through a mass-balancing process. On the complicated. So why have we seen many macro scale, discrepancies between the amount of product failures over the last decade?” he asks. flowing into and out of sections of a pipeline could indicate The short answer is that too many organizations look for losses along the route. Mass-balancing techniques can theothe loopholes in a safety-management system in a misguided retically be used to pinpoint those leaks. attempt to cut costs. “I have seen good times when the sector Both federal and provincial regulators — in legislation was flush with money, and I have seen bad times when people promulgated by the NEB federally and by British Columbia, start to cut corners,” Kuprewicz says. “That is when you get Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec, New into trouble.” Brunswick and Nova Scotia provincially — have adopted And sometimes, a leak-detection system may not be as CSA Z662, the Safety Standards for Oil & Gas Pipeline Syseffective as one thinks it is. “Everybody is looking for the tems, which gives it the force of law. ‘magic bullet’ that will solve all your pipeline-release probThe standard covers the design, construction, operation lems, but nobody has come up with it yet,” Kuprewicz says. and maintenance of pipeline systems that convey liquid hy“There is no easy answer because it is not a one-size-fits-all drocarbons, natural gas, oilfield water and steam and the kind of problem.” carbon dioxide used in enhanced recovery schemes. That A line carrying oilfield wastes or salty water presents very includes not only the pipelines, but all pumping stations, different challenges than one carrying crude oil or sour gas. compressors, pressure-regulating stations, tank and storage And lines designed for transporting refined products, like gas vessels, monitoring stations and terminals spread along the or oil, each come with their own sets of risks. But AER data route. As a result, each of those regulatory regimes makes on pipeline performance in Alberta from 1990 to 2013 show mass balancing a mandatory component of a release-prethat approximately 30 per cent of the lines in that province vention program. are more than 25 years old. Does the age of Canada’s pipelines Sensors located at regular intervals along the line moniraise additional concerns? tor changes in temperature, pressure, density, flow rates and The National Energy Board, the federal agency that overother parameters. All that data is fed back, in real time, into a sees pipelines crossing international or provincial borders, sophisticated computer program that isolates aberrant comhas compiled a database on the root causes and circumstances surrounding the 39 major pipeline ruptures that have putational signatures that could indicate a loss — anything taken place in Canada since 1992. Of these, only two oc- from a slow leak to a major rupture — at a specific location curred in lines or facilities built in the last 30 years. Eight oc- in the pipeline. If such a release is detected, the operator can 26


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shut down the system. “Good luck with that,” says Kuprewicz, who suggests that a regulation that relies on mass balancing to spot pipeline releases is “the most dangerous of all regulations because it confers the mere illusion of safety.” As a large transmission pipeline can carry millions of tonnes of hydrocarbons, it does not really mass-balance. “When you are dealing with a compressible liquid, relatively small changes in inventory can mask significant pressure changes, making it hard to detect even a big hole. Relying on mass balancing can increase errors by whole additional orders of magnitude,” Kuprewicz says. He also stresses that many in the sector misunderstand the technical limitations of mass-balancing technology. “Again and again, we see ruptures continuing undetected even under low pressures, nowhere near the maximum operating pressure allowed pipelines.” AHEAD OF THE CURVE “The industry is under severe scrutiny at the moment,” says Paul van Eeden, executive chairman of Edmonton-based Synodon Inc., a remote sensing company that helps energy firms improve their operational safety and reduce their environmental footprint. The company’s remote alkane-sensing technology, realSens™, measures ethane emissions to locate hydrocarbon leaks along pipelines and around other oil and gas infrastructure. “In Canada, the oil and gas sector is undergoing some intensive self-evaluation to determine the appropriate level of leak detection,” van Eeden says. “There are two kinds of companies: there are those that say aerial-based remote sensing is not required by the regulators, so I am not doing it, and there are those who recognize that this is a good technology that goes beyond the minimum requirements and allows us to be proactive.” In addition to continuously monitoring pipeline conditions, companies must also conduct regular visual inspec-

tions as part of their integrated management systems. Small planes may overfly routes or crews tramp alongside pipelines, typically looking for pools of leaking product or patches of dead and dying vegetation. Right-of-way crews may also be equipped with handheld monitors. This is an expensive, time-consuming process. “How many field crews will you need to inspect 1,000 kilometres of pipeline, and how long to cover the entire distance?” van Eeden asks. The logistics for mobilizing such an operation are staggering, and they can detect only a leak that has already existed long enough to cause damage. “We can do it faster, cheaper and more efficiently,” he claims. “By monitoring ethane plumes along a 200-hundred-footwide corridor, we can detect very small leaks, as small as ten barrels a day, and track them back to within two metres of their point of origin,” he says. “And because we can find leaks early, the operator can send out a repair crew to stop the release and mitigate the environmental damage.” GOOD PEOPLE, BAD DECISIONS Despite the limitations of the current spill-detection technology, most pipeline ruptures remain a people problem. “Whenever there is a serious accident, almost invariably, you will find one group of experts in an organization hasn’t been talking to another group of experts,” Kuprewicz says. A lack of coordination can negate all the checks and balances built into the system, and an operator can quickly lose control of a pipeline. He also cites trimming back integrity management and spill-detection budgets as probably the worst decision that a pipeline operator can make. “Technology can be a wonderful thing,” Kuprewicz says, “but never underestimate the odds that a group of very smart people will make a stupid decision, especially if given the incentive to not do the right thing.” William M. Glenn is a writer in Toronto.

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The issue of safety in the healthcare industry made headlines in June, when the Supreme Court of Canada ruled in favour of three British Columbia medical workers who claimed that they had contracted breast cancer from their jobs. Some say the decision could pave the way for sick workers to receive compensation benefits without having to prove beyond the shadow of a doubt that their illnesses are work-related.



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t was a case full of twists and turns. Katrina Hammer, Patricia Schmidt and Anne MacFarlane, who worked in a laboratory at Mission Memorial Hospital in Mission, British Columbia, were among seven laboratory technicians out of 63 who developed breast cancer over 20 years. They had worked with solvents and mixtures containing known carcinogens. The air-intake vent of their laboratory was located for a time near the hospital incinerator, which burned medical waste containing plastics and chemicals. As the rate of cancer among the lab workers showed an incidence of cancer eight times higher than that of the general population, their workplace was deemed a cancer cluster. According to the Supreme Court of Canada judgement, WorkSafeBC originally denied their applications for compensation benefits on the grounds that there was insufficient evidence to prove that their employment had played a role in the development of breast cancer. But those decisions were overturned in 2010 and 2011, when the Workers’ Compensation Administrative Tribunal (WCAT) in Richmond, British Columbia linked the cancers to the workplace. Fraser Health Authority, the organization that runs the hospital, applied for reconsideration of WCAT’s decisions under the Workers Compensation Act. The British Columbia Court of Appeal said the Tribunal’s decisions were “patently unreasonable” because there was no evidence that the women’s cancer had been caused by their work environment and that the Tribunal had ignored expert advice to the contrary, which suggested the cases were a statistical anomaly. The workers then appealed to the Supreme Court, raising the issue of whether WCAT had erred in its approach to causation. On June 24, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled in favour of the three workers, concluding that the Tribunal’s decision was not patently unreasonable. “It really was a case about the bigger legal principles,” says Kaity Cooper, in-house legal counsel for the Burnabybased Hospital Employees’ Union. Cooper, who represented Schmidt, explains that the Court of Appeal’s decision was based on the premise that scientific evidence is required to prove that the cancer was indeed caused by a specific agent in the workplace. “We don’t know enough about most cancers to be able to do that,” Cooper says, adding that there have been hundreds of reports over the years investigating cancer clusters and almost none of them have been able to determine a specific cause. “What that means is if the decision is allowed to stand, almost nobody would be allowed to be compensated for a workplace cancer.” The Supreme Court’s reasoning — that causal link can be determined in the absence of confirmatory expert evidence by drawing on other evidence and that the issue must be “resolved in the workers’ favour” if the evidence is evenly weighed on causation — has broad implications for workplace cancer. “You need some evidence, and it doesn’t have to be scientific evidence,” says Cooper, pointing out that the standard in workers’ compensation cases is 50-50 that the disease is as likely to be caused by the workplace as not, which is a significantly lower standard than requiring claimants to provide a

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Workers’ compensation expert Ron Ellis, former chair of WCAT and author of Unjust by Design — Canada’s Administrative Justice System, believes that Brown’s decision recalls the Supreme Court decision of Snell vs. Farrell [1990], which held that a tribunal or court can conclude the existence of a fact even though scientific evidence does not prove that fact. The case centred on an ophthalmologist who performed surgery to remove a cataract from a patient’s right eye. After injecting a local anaesthetic into the eyeball, the opthalmologist noticed a small discolouration, which DETERMINING CAUSATION “Causation can be inferred was a very small retrobulbar bleed. While palpitating the eye, the doctor saw no othIn his decision, Justice Russell Brown — even in the face of er signs of retrobulbar haemorrhage. writes that “causation can be inferred — After waiting 30 minutes, the opeven in the face of inconclusive or contrary inconclusive or contrary thalmologist proceeded with the opexpert evidence — from other evidence, expert evidence — from eration.  Following the surgery, there was including merely circumstantial evidence.” blood in the vitreous chamber of the eye. He adds that workers covered by work- other evidence, including When the chamber cleared nine months ers’ compensation do not need to establish merely circumstantial later, the patient realized that the optic causation on a balance of probabilities, as nerve had atrophied, resulting in a loss of would be required in a civil court. “The evidence.” sight in the right eye.  workplace need only be of causative sigAccording to the Supreme Court of Canada decision denificance or more than a trivial or insignificant aspect in the livered on August 16, 1990, one possible cause of optic-nerve development of a worker’s illness,” Brown writes, noting that atrophy is pressure due to retrobulbar haemorrhage, although the law sets a lower burden of proof in such cases and must neither of the expert witnesses could state with certainty what favour the worker. had caused the atrophy or when it had occurred. One issue The court was presented with a review of the scientific litthat the court needed to determine was whether the plaintiff erature on factors associated with the risk of breast cancer, an in a malpractice suit must prove causation in accordance with epidemiological analysis of the cancer cluster among workers traditional principles, or whether recent developments in the in the laboratory and a field investigation into possible exlaw justify a finding of liability on the basis of some less onerposure to potentially carcinogenic substances among laboraous standard. tory technicians. As for potential causes, the authors of these The trial judge accepted the expert evidence that when reports observe no current occupational chemical exposures, there is bleeding other than the obvious pinprick of the neebut note that past exposures were “likely much higher” and dle, the operation should not continue. He concluded that the included one known human carcinogen. scientific report that establishes causation. “This decision is huge,” she adds. In the weeks following the ruling, Cooper has already received several calls from female hospital workers who suspect cancer clusters in their respective workplaces. “The takeaway from this for me is that we don’t know that much about what causes cancer, but that uncertainty isn’t going to be at the expense of workers’ compensation. Workers won’t have to bear the weight of that uncertainty.”


DIFFICULT TO PROVE Adjudication of compensation claims, such as the cancercluster case in British Columbia, boils down to causation and whether the laboratory did trigger these women’s illnesses. “Pinning down one cause for complicated diseases like breast cancer is always going to be difficult because it is multi-factoral,” says lawyer Tonie Beharrell, who represented two of the three claimants, Katrina Hammer and Anne MacFarlane, as lead counsel for their union, the Health Sciences Association of B.C. in New Westminster. “There are lots of different elements that can come into play and be part of the causation puzzle.” In order to pass the causation test, Beharrell explains, one must present clear scientific proof. But pinpointing a specific cause at the highest level is rarely possible, and even then, the workers’ compensation statutes may not contemplate it. Another difficulty is the limited level of knowledge on identifying cancer causes with certainty, according to Kaity Cooper, the in-house legal counsel with the Burnaby-based


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Hospital Employees’ Union, who represented the third claimant, Patricia Schmidt. “In the case of these particular women, they didn’t have the type of cancer that WorkSafeBC automatically recognized as a workplace disease, so it was up to them and their representatives to find evidence to show a causal connection,” Cooper explains. “There was evidence that they were working with carcinogens, and there was evidence that there was a very high rate of cancer in the workplace, but when the scientist went in and tried to actually identify a specific cause, they just weren’t able to.” “Highly complex” is how Trish Knight Chernecki, senior manager of media and government relations with WorkSafeBC in Richmond, describes the cancer-cluster case. “WorkSafeBC is carefully studying the court decision to determine what it means for WorkSafeBC going forward,” she notes. By Jeff Cottrill, editor of safety news

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April to create a presumption that post-traumatic stress disophthalmologist’s negligence had caused the injury. “The most significant paragraph in this decision is para- order diagnosed among first responders is work-related. graph 38, where it says the absence of expert evidence of a causative link is not determinative,” Ellis says. “We have been AN ELUSIVE LINK losing track of the principles in establishing a causative con- When it comes to determining a cancer cluster, many have nection between the disability and the disease and the work tried to establish cause over the years, but very few do so with environment,” he adds, referring to the breast-cancer-cluster success. According to Cooper, the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention investigatcase ruling, which makes it clear that for ed 108 cancer clusters in 29 states and five a long time, there is a lower bar for occupational causation for diseases with long “Occupational-disease foreign countries between 1961 and 1982, but determined no clear cause of cancer. latency periods, like cancer. adjudication is very In addition, the Minnesota Department of While Ellis acknowledges that workers’ Health investigated more than 1,000 cancompensation legislation across the councomplicated.” cer clusters between 1985 and 1995, and try does establish a link between certain not a single investigation found a cause. diseases and work environments, that apSo how was the cancer-cluster case in British Columbia plies to only a small number of professions. “The most well-known instance is firefighters,” he says. determined? By comparing the number of cancers within “If a firefighter gets a certain disease, it is presumed that it a defined subpopulation of the community to that of the is caused by the work environment, and they don’t have to broader population in the province, one can conclude if the prove it. More recently, first responders in some places suffer “perceived” cluster is an actual statistical cluster or not, exsome types of diseases that are presumed to be caused by the plains George Astrakianakis, an associate professor in the work environment,” he notes, citing Ontario, which followed Department of Occupational and Environmental Health the leads of Alberta and Manitoba by passing legislation in with the University of British Columbia in Vancouver and a 32


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research scientist who specializes in workplace exposure. In 2005, Astrakianakis worked on the final report of the Occupational Health and Safety Agency for Healthcare in British Columbia regarding the incidence of cancer in the laboratory where the medical workers were employed. He presented the results to the affected women and the unions in this case. “There was no doubt that what they experienced was a real cluster of breast cancers,” he says. “What was not clear was why.” There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to determining what constitutes a statistically significant cancer cluster, according to Carman Overholt, a senior litigation lawyer specializing in employment law, labour-relations law and civil litigation with Overholt Law in Vancouver. “I do think we will see law developing in this area, which tries to address what is statistically significant.” Determining that a cancer is occupationally related is tricky, says Lorna Pawluk, an associate counsel who practises oh&s and workers’ compensation law for employers with Bernard LLP in Vancouver. There are certain types of cancer that are deemed presumptively work-related, such as nasal cancer among leather tanners who used nickel. But Pawluk doubts that the Supreme Court ruling in the breast-cancercluster case will lay the groundwork for future cases. “Occupational-disease adjudication is very complicated, and this does not set a precedent for anything,” she says. “A statistically significant cancer cluster doesn’t matter; there has to be evidence of exposure.” She cites as an example an unusually high number of teachers who get the flu during flu season and suffer more than the rest of the population. “There has to be some evidence they are exposed at work, but they could also be exposed at home, so how do you tell?” Pawluk thinks WCAT’s decision, which linked the cancer to the workplace, was just wrong. “Because of the decision, they made some evidence of exposure, and this panel concluded a link.” THROUGH THE CRACKS Current scientific evidence suggests that workers are exposed to cancer-causing substances on the job that are responsible for thousands of cancers in Canada each year, according to Dr. Paul Demers, director of the Occupational Cancer Research Centre (OCRC) at Cancer Care Ontario in Toronto. In fact, the epidemiologist takes exception to the Canadian Cancer Society’s online description that on-the-job carcinogens represent “a small percentage of cancers.” “A small percentage of cancers is thousands of cancers,” Demers says. “If I said it is only 3,000 people getting killed on the street, you wouldn’t think that number was small. It gives a false impression. The numbers we are talking about are not at all small.” According to Demers, thousands of job-related cancers go unrecognized and uncompensated each year. He estimates that as few as five per cent of occupational cancer cases ever receive workers’ compensation benefits. Many of those occupational cancers are lung cancers, as workers inhale a num-

ber of carcinogenic substances on the job. Demers estimates that there are approximately 2,000 cancer cases caused by asbestos alone annually, resulting in a cancer known as mesothelioma — a rare and aggressive form of cancer that develops in the lining of the lungs, abdomen or heart — as well as lung, laryngeal and ovarian cancer. Skin cancers due to sun exposure and bladder cancer that developed from contact with chemicals are also common occupational cancers. But Demers claims that physicians often concern themselves with treating the disease and rarely look at its root cause. “If you have lung cancer, a doctor will assume it is from smoking,” Demers says. “For women with breast cancer, I doubt doctors inquire at all about a cause. Even with mesothelioma, which the only established cause is asbestos exposure or similar minerals — almost all of which occurs in the workplace — less than half of them are compensated,” he says, adding that the under-recognition of workplace cancer is a “very serious and large issue.” AT RISK According to Demers, there are approximately 60 known carcinogens, ranging from radiation, diesel-engine exhaust and sun exposure to inhalation of crystalline silica and wood dust in Canadian workplaces. An additional 100 more are suspected carcinogens. It is believed that occupational exposure may account for 20 to 30 per cent of cancers among bluecollar workers. Information from the Canadian Cancer Society states that the exposure and risk of cancer among workers who have been exposed to carcinogens at work are much higher than the average person’s. Although studies have shown that some exposures increase a person’s risk of developing certain cancers, it may not be possible to link the cancer to a particular exposure conclusively. Construction workers, woodworkers, miners, painters, pesticide workers and workers in the chemical, rubber or dye industries are more likely to be exposed on the job. Demers points out that healthcare workers face a number of exposures that can put them at risk of developing cancer. Some of the more common and well-known sources of

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sure include radiation, which causes many types of cancers, including breast cancer. As radiation is used for diagnostic purposes as well as to treat cancer, it largely affects workers who take X-rays, although he stresses that the hazard is wellrecognized and -controlled. Exposure to blood-borne pathogens is another risk, and viruses like hepatitis have been associated with a heightened risk of cancer. Another perhaps lesser-known cause of breast cancer is nightshift work. “It is classified as a probable human carcinogen in terms of disrupting the circadian rhythms and increasing the risk of breast cancer,” Demers explains. “There are a lot of healthcare workers, particularly in the nursing occupation, but others as well that have to work rotating or night shifts to cover off and take care of patients at night. That is a common one across healthcare,” he notes. While working in a laboratory means reduced contact with patients, laboratory workers nevertheless face exposure risk from handling biological samples that could contain pathogens. Other exposure risks that are present in a laboratory setting include chemicals like formaldehyde, which is used to preserve tissue, or sterilizing agents like ethylene oxide. “They use a lot more chemicals both in the treatment of specimens and the sterilization of equipment and things like that,” Demers adds. 34


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KEEPING TABS Every day, healthcare workers face an array of hazards that have the potential to infect and injure. According to WorkSafeBC, the injury rate in the healthcare sector at 9.3 per 100 workers was four times higher than the provincial average injury rate of 2.3 per 100 workers. The healthcare sector also has the highest volume of injury claims among workplaces in the province during the past decade, followed by construction, manufacturing and forestry. Considering the numerous hazards that healthcare workers face, the establishment of the OCRC in Toronto in 2009 — the first centre of its kind in Canada — is a welcome move. The Centre, whose mandate is to use its findings for preventive programs to control workplace cancers, came about as a result of a growing recognition for more research on the causes and preventions of workplace cancers after decades of inadequate efforts in most countries. Although cancer is a reportable disease in Canada and national and provincial cancer registries exist to assist in that regard, occupational cancer seems to be a different animal, Astrakianakis says. “Sadly, occupational information is often incomplete or missing entirely from these records,” he notes, adding that the OCRC, which is headed by Dr. Demers, has undertaken numerous projects to evaluate cancer risk in Canadian workplaces. Workers’ compensation boards in Ontario and British Columbia all have exposure registries that document worker exposures to harmful substances, such as mercury or tuberculosis. The registries also serve as historical diagnostic guides, considering that some occupational diseases have long latency periods. Looking at the types of workers’ compensation claims being filed is another way to ascertain what types of injuries that healthcare workers suffer most. According to Astrakianakis, “healthcare workers have a lot to deal with.” To address these risks, occupational hygienists are trained to evaluate hazards in the workplace, systematically take stock of what agents are being used and how they could come into contact with a human being, solve problems and make recommendations to employers. Despite the important work that occupational hygienists play, few people know who they are or what they do. “People think we are dental hygienists,” says Shamini Samuel, president of the Canadian Registration Board of Occupational Hygienists in Carleton Place, Ontario. That being said, most healthcare settings in Canada have well-established health and safety protocols. In the case of potentially infectious agents, such protocols include appropriate gloves, protective clothing and segregated work spaces. As for working with chemotherapy drugs, all mixing should take place in ventilated safety cabinets. But all the safeguards in the world are only as effective as the people who use them. “At end of day, it depends on the individual to follow those guidelines,” Astrakianakis says. Kelly Putter is a writer in Beamsville, Ontario.

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A Tale of Two Sexes be greater, thereby hiking the risk of sprains and strains. The height of a production line can also affect male and female en and women are not created equal — women workers differently. “Those kinds of things can definitely imhave a higher risk of some musculoskeletal dis- pact workplace MSDs,” Anderson says. Differences in how men and women move is another orders (MSDs) than men. That was the message factor behind the higher rates of neck and shoulder injury that Dr. Julie Côté, associate professor and chair of the Deamong women, who tend to have lower motor variability, partment of Kinesiology and Physical Education at McGill while men make more minute adjustments when repeating a University in Montreal, delivered during a keynote speech at motion than women do. “Low variability has been the 9th International Scientific Conference on the shown to be a predictor of injury development,” Prevention of Work-Related Musculoskeletal DisorGender Dr. Côté adds. ders, held in Toronto on June 23. Other gender differences include how men and Even when both genders engage in the same plays a role women respond to fatigue, perceive pain, adapt to tasks, women report pain, discomfort and other in workplace physiological stress and hold different job assignMSD symptoms in the neck and upper limbs twice ments and social roles outside of work. All these as often as men do, whereas men are more likely to MSD risk. factors comprise a model that Côté has developed experience lower-back injuries. to guide her research into why neck and shoulder “Sex and gender are complicated,” says Dr. Côté, MSDs are more prevalent among women. who defines sex as the biological state that determines wheth“The question we need to ask may not be, ‘Are men and er one is male or female, while gender refers to socially conwomen different?’ but ‘How much so?’” Dr. Côté notes. “This structed roles, behaviour and activities that a given society question is all the more pertinent when considering making considers appropriate for men and women. “Sex and gender workplace adaptations to prevent work-related MSDs.” have their own operational definitions, but there is significant interaction between them, with aspects of biology influencing psychosocial roles and attitudes and vice-versa,” she says. MARS VERSUS VENUS “That is why we have come to use the expression ‘sex/gender Studies dating back to the late ‘90s have explored the comdifferences’—to recognize the integration of these influences.” plex interactions between gender and MSD exposure. Karen Sex and gender differences go beyond physical strength to Messing, Ph.D., professor of ergonomics at the University of include differences in the types of muscle fibre. Women have Quebec in Montreal, is the co-author of a 2009 paper coma higher proportion of Type 1 muscle fibres, which give them paring two strategies analyzing a single dataset for the relahigher endurance, but can also result in women performing tionships between risk factors and MSDs in a populationtasks for longer durations. The repetitive and invariable na- based sample with a wide range of exposures. The 1998 Québec Health and Social Survey, which polled ture of tasks that women are more likely to perform, coupled 11,735 respondents in paid work, reported “significant” muswith the fact that they compensate for their weaker strength culoskeletal pain in 11 body regions during the previous 12 by engaging muscles at levels close to maximum capacity, months and a range of personal, physical and psychosocial could be reasons for the heightened risk of muscle overload risk factors. Five studies concerning risk factors for four musand injury among women, Dr. Côté explains. culoskeletal outcomes were carried out based on these data. Marnie Downey, a Canadian certified professional erEach study included analyses with multiple logistic regresgonomist and president of ERGO Incorporated in Innisfil, sion (MLR) performed separately for women, men and the Ontario, thinks that gender plays a role in workplace MSD total study population. The results from these gender-stratirisk because of physiological and biomechanical differences fied and unstratified analyses were then compared. between males and females. She cites standards like lifting In the unstratified MLR models, gender was significantly guidelines and safe-material-handling tables, which use data associated with musculoskeletal pain in the neck and lower for both males and females. “We do consider gender differextremities, but not with lower-back pain. The gender-stratiences, but we use it kind of as a way to say we want to accomfied MLR models identified significant associations between modate as many people as possible,” Downey says. each specific musculoskeletal outcome and a variety of perShona Anderson, a Canadian certified professional ersonal characteristics and physical and psychosocial workgonomist and president of Anderson Ergonomics Consulting place exposures for each gender. Most of the associations, if Inc. in Calgary, agrees. For example, the size of a tool may present for one gender, were also found in the total popunot fit a woman’s hand as well as it would a man’s, while the grip strength required of a female worker to wield a tool may lation. But several risk factors present for only one gender By Jean Lian




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could be detected only in a stratified analysis, whereas the unstratified analysis added little information. “Stratifying analyses by gender is necessary if a full range of associations between exposures and MSD is to be detected and understood,” the study concludes. A 2001 study on upper-extremity MSDs among 49,000 Danish workers yielded similar results: the number of complaints and ratios for reporting MSDs were higher among women than men. A 2009 report from the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland also found that women are three times more likely than men to develop carpal tunnel syndrome, which could be attributed to women having smaller carpal tunnels. The types of jobs assigned to men and women also influences MSD risk. Low-force, repetitive upper-limb work is more often assigned to women. The juggling of work life and family roles as caregivers also means that women are less likely to have time to exercise, which is an effective injury-prevention strategy. As more women are involved in manual material handling, factoring sex and gender differences into research studies will yield a better understanding of injury mechanism. “For many reasons, it would be a mistake to ignore sex and gender in our research designs,” Dr. Côté argues. Anderson has observed an encouraging trend: companies are increasingly taking physical differences into account when designing workplaces. “I am seeing a lot more adjustability built into all sorts of things, including corporations buying extra small to large sizes of gloves, differentsized handles of tools, height-adjustable desks,” she notes. While factoring gender differences into workplace ergonomic solutions entails more costs, Anderson says the prices for adjustability have come down dramatically with ergonomic advances and increasing demand for adjustability. The challenge, rather, is time pressure, which can result in employees taking shortcuts instead of taking the time to use devices that minimize physical exertion and injury risk. Gender difference is not something that Marnie thinks about upfront. “I always look at trying to make the job safer for everybody.” For workplaces like foundries, which are male-dominated, she points out that employers need to ensure they put in as many ergonomic accommodations as they can without creating undue hardship for themselves. “But at the same time, they do have the right to say if you are not able to do the essential duties of the job, whether you are male or female, then maybe the job is not for you.” Gender differences is only part of the picture for Anderson, who points to the increasing diversity of the workforce. She cites the differences in physique between an Asian worker and someone from the Nordic region as an example. “The difference in size is dramatic between those two people, so it is not just sex and gender,” Anderson argues. “I think workplaces need to focus on striking a balance between all of the people that work in that organization and having adjustability built in for those people.” Jean Lian is editor of



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Raising the Stakes The WCB accepted 775 claims from the construction sector last year, the fourth-highest number among all of the he Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board province’s trades, according to the Board’s 2015 annual re(WCB) is raising concerns about worker safety in the port. Germain notes that injury rates within an industry can residential construction sector, pinpointing the low use have an effect on employers’ premiums as well. “Ultimately, of personal protective equipment (PPE) as a factor in the in- we are reaching for zero, so the number of claims does matdustry’s high injury rate, which can translate into high work- ter,” he says. Making a distinction between rates and numbers is imporers’ compensation-related expenses for construction employtant, though it can be deceiving, Germain suggests. “If I have ers in the province. “If a worker’s injured and there are costs associated with five claims for, let’s say, 10 workers in my industry, versus 500 that injury,” says Phil Germain, the WCB’s vice president of claims for a million workers, you have to step back and ask prevention and employer services, “the system could increase yourself, ‘Which one’s worse?’ In one case, even though it is their premiums.” Such costs could include medical costs, only five claims, it is 50 per cent of all the workers. In the other case, it is less than half a per cent.” wage loss and fines. “So the employers really want WorkSafe is collaborating with the Saskatchto make sure that their workers are working safely.” “There is a ewan Construction Safety Association (SCSA) on A study by WorkSafe Saskatchewan, a partnerstrategic initiatives to educate employers and workship between the WCB and the Ministry of Labour reason why ers on safety, increase training and raise public Relations and Workplace Safety, reveals that last Collin Pullar, president of SCSA, points year, only 41 per cent of workers in residential conwe have got awareness. out that safety culture has been slowly changing in struction were using fall-protection equipment and 48 per cent were using protective head gear on the high injuries.” the province’s residential construction. “Saskatchewan has historically had significantly job. Only about half of the workers in the sector high injury rates and workplace deaths,” he says. had been trained in fall protection, according to an Nonchalant attitudes towards safety and PPE have been a part August 17 statement from the WCB. Ray Anthony, executive director of the Ministry’s occu- of the problem in construction. But poor PPE use is not the only cause of high injury rates pational health and safety division, stresses non-compliance with PPE regulations as a major factor in Saskatchewan’s rela- in construction. “They could get repetitive strain injury from tively high injury rates in residential construction, as well as lifting things all day long and maybe they weren’t lifting quite lack of training and supervision. “Obviously, we are not quite properly,” Germain points out. “That is just the way they were doing the work.” there where we should be,” Anthony says. According to Anthony, residential construction is a parWhile workplace incidents can increase employers’ premiums regardless of their causes, misuse or lack of PPE does not ticularly vulnerable sector. While the Ministry usually targets the worst offenders when enforcing safety, doing so in affect injured workers’ entitlement to benefits. “WCB is a no-fault system,” Germain explains. “If some- the residential construction sector is challenging, because it body doesn’t wear the right PPE, there could be any num- involves a large number of small employers. “We are more ber of reasons for that. Maybe the employer didn’t give it stuck with the idea of an industry-level enforcement activity, to them. Maybe the employer didn’t train them. Maybe the as opposed to a very targeted enforcement activity to each employer gave it to them, but doesn’t really expect them to individual employer,” he says. The WorkSafe study was based on two workplace inspecuse it. Or it could be, the employer’s done all the right things and the worker just chose not to. In any one of those circum- tion campaigns, which examined 161 residential construction stances, we would still provide compensation and support to sites last year. The Ministry plans to conduct more inspections this summer and fall, according to the WCB statement. injured workers.” Germain notes that if a construction employee fails to use If the campaigns work, it should translate into lower injury fall-arrest gear, it is often because they do not think they are rates, which could lead to lower premiums. “There is a reason why we have got high injuries, and colgoing to fall. “So it wasn’t intentional, really, on their part.” On the flipside, workers’ compensation authorities put the onus lectively, we need to perform better,” Pullar says. “We are not primarily on employers and supervisors to enforce safety doing so good.” rules. “Employers set the rules and the expectations around the workplace.” Jeff Cottrill is editor of canadian occupational health & safety news.

By Jeff Cottrill




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For Your Eyes Only indoor/outdoor are a little bit tinted,” says Ashley Gaworski, the company’s product-line manager for industrial head, eye, yes are among our most vulnerable organs. The risk face and hearing protection. “We have some amber, some of injuring our windows to the soul is even higher for blues, some light tints. And then the outdoor glasses are comthose who are exposed to projectiles, dust, gases, wood pletely tinted, like a black/grey kind of lens.” 3M Canada, a PPE company based in London, Ontario, pellets and chemicals on the job. As such, safety glasses and carries a wide variety of glasses and goggles, including sealed goggles have become mandatory in many professions. safety eyewear, products with anti-fog properties and what is “Every single industry that you can imagine is using some known as “pressure diffusion technology”, which makes the type of eye protection,” says Claudio Dente, president of Denglasses more flexible, lightweight and comfortable for users. tec Safety Specialists, a Newmarket, Ontario-based company “We are always looking to make sure we have a modern dethat sells and distributes workplace safety gear. “It is really a sign for them that is comfortable, but also introduces a high huge market where eyewear is being used,” he notes, citing level of protection and something that uses the latest technolconstruction, manufacturing, utilities, mining and transporogy, ” says Danielle Norris, an application-develtation as among the biggest customers. opment safety professional with 3M’s personalAccording to Dente, the primary purpose of “Every single safety division. safety eyewear is to protect against high-speed Although added features can enhance the projectiles, followed by dust and smaller par- industry that you protection of safety eyewear, they come with a ticles. Safety glasses are especially important for can imagine price tag. Simple plastic safety glasses with no exjobs that involve cutting material with machintra functionality will have a lower price, but addery, which can send small fragments flying in is using some ing a telescopic temple arm, a ratchet or a shaded the air. Goggles are necessary for occupations in lens will entail costs, Dente says. which workers may come into contact with dust type of eye or dangerous chemicals or gases, such as chloTHE RIGHT CHOICE protection.” rine or ammonia, which can cause major damage With so many variations and brands of safety in even low concentrations, while face shields are eyewear out there, how can an employer choose the right available to provide further protection. one? “It really depends upon the type of work that the company is doing,” Draghici says. While sealed or close-fitting SEAL OF SAFETY There are many types of safety glasses and goggles on the eyewear is right for industries with flying debris, a lighter market, but the best protection comes from sealed or close- manufacturing job with fewer atmospheric hazards could fitting safety eyewear, according to Jodi Draghici, a licenced settle for a simpler glasses. A hazard assessment of the work optician and consultant with Regina-based FO Safety Eye- environment is the first step. “You really need to have a good understanding of what the wear, a subsidiary of Optics International, which specializes hazards are on a job for your workers and what you primarin prescription safety eyewear. ily need to protect them from,” Norris says. Safety eyewear Close-fitting eyewear uses a wrap-around style of frame should also be compatible with other safety gear that workers that tightens the grip on the user’s face to better guard against wear, such as hearing protection, hard hats, face shields or debris, smoke, spraying fluids, glare and wind. These glasses respirators, she adds. “You don’t want to select eyewear that are especially suitable for workers in oil and gas, in which is going to compromise the use of any other types of PPE.” work conditions tend to be dusty and dirty, Draghici explains. Involving employees in the decision-making process is a Dangerous chemicals and solvents in the air are a risk at good idea, because they know best what fits them and are these worksites as well. “Close-fitting or sealed eyewear helps more likely to use safety eyewear in which they look good give them the splash and debris protection they would need,” and feel comfortable. Dente says some glasses come with fitshe notes, adding that some products allow the user to adjust ting capabilities, such as telescopic temple arms or ratchet the fit through removable foam gaskets. adjustments to increase comfort. “That comes down to the MSA, a manufacturer of personal protective equipment user’s need. ” (PPE) in Cranberry Township, Pennsylvania, makes safety Dan Birch, senior marketing manager for industrial eyeglasses and goggles for work indoors, outdoors or both. The wear with Honeywell Industrial Safety in Lincolnshire, Illigoggles differ mainly by the lens tints. nois, agrees that style, comfort and fit can significantly influ“The indoor ones are completely clear; the ones that are

By Jeff Cottrill




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from anything that is abrasive. Also keep ence whether workers use eye protection. it away from certain really strong chemi“Safety eyewear cannot protect unless it is cal cleaning agents, anything that has a worn. If it looks good and it is comfortsolvent in it. That can degrade the coatings able, it will be worn,” he says, describing we put on our eyewear.” Honeywell’s Uvex Hypershock and Uvex Birch advises customers to use only Acadia eyewear products as “cool” and the most rigorously tested chemicals “very stylish.” and cloths when cleaning safety eyewear. An employer should also consider “Never use a shirt that is dirty or has been whether specialty lenses are needed to proworn on the jobsite,” he says. The compatect against specific hazards like sunlight, ny even offers product-specific cloths and chemical hazards or high impacts, Birch towelettes for its Uvex brand. adds. “If there is the likelihood of lenses Another mistake is overusing the same fogging and compromising clear vision, cleaning cloth, which leads to scratching then you want to select the best safety eyeof the lens, due to residual wear with the best FFT — fog-free time.” dirt build-up in the cloth. Also crucial is that the choBirch recommends that ussen product meets the proper ers first rinse safety eyewear certifications and standards. under cool tap water before CSA Group, which authors adding a cleaning solution official standards for PPE in specifically designed for the Canada, has released an upproduct, as common housedated version of its standard hold cleaners can remove the coatfor safety eyewear last year. Z94.3-15, Uvex Livewire glasses are among the safety ings on the lens. or Eye and Face Protectors, includes eyewear that Honeywell (top) offers. Also “Wipe the lens in small circles revisions on optical requirements for available on the market are MSA’s Essential gently to remove any smudges from plano eyewear with non-prescription glasses (bottom left) and 3M’s Scotchguard the lenses, and don’t forget to clean reading segments and on provisions anti-fog goggles (bottom right). the nose bridge and the temples to refor the proper types of lenses. move dirt that could get trapped against the skin,” Birch says. However well one takes care of safety glasses or goggles, 20/20 MAINTENANCE their lifespan depends on the environment and tasks for Safety eyewear can be particularly vulnerable if it is exposed which they are used. “If your application is constantly seeing to flying shards and pellets. As such, proper maintenance can chips and impacts, then you are going to have to replace them help safety glasses or goggles last longer and save costs. “We more frequently, ” Gaworski says. recommend daily inspection,” Gaworski says. The defects to look out for include cracks in the lenses, especially for goggles, FUTURE VISION and rips or tears in any of the sealing points around the face. “The best thing to do is definitely follow the manufac- One development in the field of eye protection over the past turer’s user instructions,” advises Norris, who recommends few years is safety glasses with thin foam liners built around keeping safety eyewear clean and storing it in an environ- the outer edges of the lenses to provide additional sealing in ment that is not too hot or wet. “Keep your eyewear away environments with a lot of particulates in the atmosphere.

SETTING THE PARAMETERS Not everybody has perfect 20/20 vision. Humans eyes come in different shapes and sizes, with varying levels of ability, so it is important to adapt safety eyewear to workers with slight vision defects. “Having a licenced optician or optometrist office fit you with a pair of safety glasses is the most important thing if you wear prescription glasses,” says Jodi Draghici, a licenced optician and consultant with FO Safety Eyewear in Regina, which specializes in prescription safety eyewear and adapting safety glasses to match the corrective functions of workers’ regular eyeglasses. In order to find the correct ocular centres for the safety glasses, manufacturers take a worker’s optical prescription

as well as vertical and horizontal measurements and other parameters. “You do have to be careful with fitting,” explains Draghici, “because of all these different circumstances that come into play when you get to finally decide which pair of safety glasses will work best for that patient.” Some employers and workers do not realize the importance of prescription safety eyewear. “A common misconception is that people can wear anything, any type of glasses given, without taking their optical prescription into consideration,” Draghici says. But the difference that optics makes is crucial. With non-prescription safety glasses, “you have a little bit more leeway. The biggest thing with non-prescription is, you want to go with what fits your face best.”

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“Even though the safety glass provides protection against the impact of a projectile, what we are trying to do with these foam liners is prevent the dust particle from entering behind the safety glass,” Dente explains. Another recent innovation is a new anti-fog coating that is imbedded into the glasses’ lenses rather than just applied to the outsides, where the coating often wears off over time. Norris says that 3M’s eyewear with the imbedded coating has been selling well. “With a lot of workers in different industrial settings, fogging is one of the top complaints.” Honeywell has also invested in anti-fogging technology for its line of safety glasses and goggles. Birch adds that the manufacturer has tested HydroShield coated lenses under the European standard, which is far stricter than North American anti-fog standards. “The lens showed an ability to remain fog-free for more than two minutes, compared to two seconds or less with other lenses,” he says. Impact resistance is another function that Honeywell is looking to improve in its line of safety eyewear. “Anti-fogging properties and scratch resistance in lens design have improved remarkably in recent years,” Birch adds. MSA has developed a product called the Vertoggle, a combined visor and goggle that shields both the eyes and the face from projectiles and more. The Vertoggle can be worn with head protection and/or with disposable respirators under the



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shield, and the shield part can be shifted into five positions. “It is a standard goggle, and then it has a face shield that comes down to your chin,” Gaworski describes. “It has been tested at face-shield speed. It is not eyewear-speed, which is about 30 per cent faster, but you still get the protection of a goggle, and you just get a little bit of face protection.” As a proper fit can determine whether employees use safety eyewear and how well it works, 3M has developed a new eyewear fit system. “If you have ever heard of respiratory fit testing, this is kind of our equivalent to that, but for eyewear,” Norris illustrates. The system consists of a kit that includes two gauges: one to measure the lenses’ coverage and the other to identify any gaps in the eyewear. The fit test can be done as quickly as in less than 10 minutes. “We have some statistics from our U.S. colleague,” Norris says, “and they have investigated that of all the eye injuries that are sustained in a year on the job, about 40 per cent of workers were actually wearing safety eyewear at the time. So there is clearly a gap in the types of eyewear they are selecting.” Regardless of whether it involves fit-testing, offers extra protective features or is compatible with other PPE, choosing the right eye protection and taking care of it is more than meets the eye. Jeff Cottrill is editor of canadian occupational health & safety news.

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Know Your Triggers NAILED IT: Hammers are out, and nail guns are in. Fastening tools like nail guns, which use compressed air, electromagnetism or flammable gases like butane and propane to drive nails into wood or other material, have become indispensable at many construction sites and other workplaces. But their speed and force, which make them useful tools in the first place, can be lethal. SHOT IN THE FOOT: According to statistics from Ontario’s Workplace Safety and Insurance Board, getting struck by objects is the leading cause of lost-time injuries in Ontario’s homebuilding sector, and most of these injuries involve fasteners such as nails, brads and tacks. An increasing number of nail-gun operators are injuring themselves and nearby workers, WorkSafeBC notes. Most of these injuries are to the hands and fingers, although the potential for serious injury or fatality is highest when a nail shoots into the chest, face, eye, head or abdomen. SEQUENTIAL VERSUS CONTACT: Nail guns are equipped with one of two kinds of trigger mechanisms: sequential trip and contact trip, information from WorkSafeBC notes. The safer type is the sequential trip, which requires two separate actions to fire a gun: a worker must first place the gun’s nose against the nailing surface and pull the trigger. This mechanism prevents the accidental discharge of nails and eliminates the chance of a second nail firing if the gun recoils. With a contact-trip nail gun, a nail is fired when the trigger is depressed and the nose placed against the nailing surface. According to a fact sheet from the Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration in Lansing, Michigan, carpenters often prefer using contact triggers, as they are faster. But these types of triggers also make it easier for operators to shoot themselves or anyone in close proximity by accident if the nose piece bumps up against someone or something with the trigger depressed. Nail guns with contact triggers are also susceptible to double firing, which is the firing of a second unwanted nail that can ricochet off the first nail, striking someone close by. SWITCHING MODES: Some nail guns have an attachment to switch modes from contact trip to sequential trip. Some employers are not aware that nail guns can be changed to the safer sequential mode. To find out whether a nail gun is a sequential-trip or contact-trip model, fire a nail and keep the trigger depressed before lifting the nail gun and carefully pressing its nose against the work surface again. If the gun 44


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fires a second nail, the gun has a contact-trip mechanism. If the gun does not fire, it operates in a sequential-trip mode. IN THE KNOW: To prevent nail-gun injuries, one has to understand how they occur. A guide on nail-gun safety for construction contractors by the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) and the Occupational Safety and Health Department in Washington, D.C. lists the following circumstances in which such injuries occur: • Unintended nail discharge from double fire or from knocking the safety contact with the trigger squeezed; • Nail penetration of a lumber work piece, striking the worker’s hand or flying off as a projectile nail; • Nail ricochet after striking a hard surface or metal feature; • Nailing too near the edge of a work piece, which sends the

• Wear safety glasses and hearing protection; • Never point the nail gun towards oneself or someone else, even if it does not contain nails or is disconnected from the air supply; • Ensure the area behind the nailing surface is clear of people; • Do not hold down the trigger unless the nose of the nail gun is pressed against the item to be nailed; • Disconnect the nail gun’s air supply when leaving it unattended, clearing jammed nails or performing maintenance; • Avoid using a nail gun that is defective and has loose bolts, screws or fittings; • Inspect replacement nails for bent nails before inserting them into the gun; • Complete a daily safety check that includes the nail gun’s connection to its energy supply; • Follow the directions in the user manual to clear jammed nails; and • Get an authorized person to do repairs or maintenance. A 2013 document by NIOSH, Straight Talk about NailGun Safety, recommends that workers familiarize themselves with the type of trigger mechanism in a nail gun before operating it. Hold and carry a nail gun with the finger off the trigger and keep the free hand that is not holding the nail gun at least 30 centimetres away from the nailing location. Ensure that the air pressure is in the recommended range of between 80 and 120 pounds per square inch. Lubricate nail guns regularly and do not lift, lower or carry a nail gun by the air hose. Last but not least, resist time pressure by working only as quickly as one can control the gun safely.

nail airborne when the tip of the nail gun fails to make full contact with the work piece; • Nailing in awkward positions, such as toe-nailing, nailing above shoulder height and nailing in a tight quarter; and • Bypassing or disabling certain features of the trigger, such as removing the spring from the safety contact tip, which could make an unintended discharge more likely. USE IT RIGHT: Nail guns can be hazardous, but this tool can be used without causing injury. Reading the owner’s manual to understand safe operation and maintenance is the first step, WorkSafeBC advises. Other preventive measures include the following: • Always use the nail gun in sequential-trip mode;

KNOW THY TOOL: Nail guns are common tools, but not everyone knows how to use them correctly or is familiar with the types of trigger used. According to the Infrastructure Health & Safety Association in Mississauga, Ontario, employers must train their workers on the specific models of nail guns they use on their sites and familiarize them with the work areas where they will use the guns. Supervisors should also show how the safety features work and demonstrate the specific task before starting work. As with any tool or piece of equipment, proper maintenance is key to ensure that a nail gun functions properly. Always use the proper kind of nails for the gun and do not try to get away with using nails that look similar enough. Inspect a nail gun prior to use to make sure that it is in good working order and check that all safety features are intact. Do not modify or override safety features, such as by tying the nose contact in the activated position. Establishing procedures on nail-gun safety and developing nail-gun work rules to mitigate risk factors can help make working with nail guns as safe as possible. Follow us on Twitter @OHSCanada

S E P T E M B E R / O C T O B E R 2 0 16






For For supplier supplier contact contact information, information please see alphabetical listings starting on page XX 55. AIR PURIFYING RESPIRATORS Draeger Cda Optrel

AIR QUALITY MONITORING Alpha Controls and Instrumentation





Benson Medical Instruments

BioFit Engineered

CD Nova





Global Furniture Group


Micwil Group of Companies



LEHDER Environmental Services

CD Nova


CEA Instruments

Joldon Diagnostics

Critical Enviro Tech


ETCOS Graywolf Sensing Solutions Mecart Inc MST/Modern Safety Tech

AIR QUALITY, INDOOR CLARCOR Industrial Air | UAS Graywolf Sensing Solutions



International Sew-Right

ASSOCIATION, SAFETY Hand Tools Inst Intl Safety Equip Assoc

Thomson Reuters


EHS Canada

Collins Safety Inc.

GfG Instrumentation


Industrial Scientific

Winter Walking – A Jordan David

RKI Instruments


Safety Direct

Air Systems International

Workplace Safety & Prevention Services



Board of Canadian Registered Safety Professionals

Bertrand Johnson Acoustics

Lineman’s Labs

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CEA Instruments


BUYERS’ GUIDE 2017 LEHDER Environmental Services

T. Harris Environmental

Companies Ltd.

Parsons Canada

Workplace Safety & Prevention Services

Jenalex Inc. – Ergonomic Products

Pinchin Ltd.


Micwil Group of Companies

T. Harris Environmental

360 Guarding



CorWil Technologies


Parsons Canada

Global Furniture Group

Human Factors



Phoenix OHC

St. John Ambulance National Office

A-Med – Oliver Landon Intl

Workplace Safety & Wellness Solutions



Natl Inst Of Disability Mgmt

Human Factors



CD Nova

CorWil Technologies

Kanomax USA, Inc.



Phoenix OHC Pinchin Ltd. T. Harris Environmental

Argus-Hazco Haws Therm-Omega-Tech, Inc.



AirZOne One


Alert@Work Human Resource Services


Beyond Rewards Inc. Dell Tech Lab

EHS Canada




FILTRATION SYSTEMS Air Systems International CLARCOR Industrial Air | UAS Parker Hannifin, Gas Separation & Filtration


FIRST AID A-Med – Oliver Landon Intl


Can U Rescue?

A-Med – Oliver Landon Intl

Canadian Red Cross

Bradley Corporation

Cederroth AB

Cederroth AB

Dentec Safety

Encon Safety Products

Forestry Suppliers


SOS Emergency Response

Therm-Omega-Tech, Inc.

FACE PROTECTION International Sew-Right Optrel

FALL PROTECTION 3M Canada Motion Industries, MSA – The Safety Co. Safety Direct

FIRST AID TRAINING Can U Rescue? Canadian Red Cross HeartSafe St. John Ambulance National Office SOS Emergency Response

FLAME RESISTANT CLOTHING DuPont Personal Protection International Sew-Right

Team-1 Academy

Lakeland Protective

Sonic Soil Sampling

Tritech Fall Protection Systems

Mount Vernon FR

Phoenix OHC


Wayne Safety

Pinchin Ltd.

ErgoCanada – Ergonomics Portal of Micwil Group of

YOW Canada

Health Sys Group O’Reilly Health & Safety Consulting

Parsons Canada

NASCO Industries, Inc. Workrite Uniform Company – Canada S E P T E M B E R / O C T O B E R 2 0 16





MSA – The Safety Co.


RKI Instruments



International Sew-Right

BioFit Engineered



Micwil Group of Companies

Encon Safety Products


F.O. Safety Eyewear

Elite Training Company

International Sew-Right

Lift Truck Safety Training Centre


International Sew-Right


Wayne Safety

MSA – The Safety Co.

Zenith Safety Products


Capital Vocational Specialists

GAS DETECTION GfG Instrumentation Industrial Scientific RKI Instruments


GLOVES International Sew-Right

GLOVES, DISPOSABLE CanSafe-SafetyZone International Sew-Right Ronco Protective Products

GOGGLES, SAFETY Encon Safety Products

360 Guarding


Sat-T-Gard Wayne Safety



Deb Canada

International Sew-Right



Pinchin Ltd. Veolia ES Canada Services Industriels Inc.


Dentec Safety

HIGH VISIBILITY APPAREL American Safety Vest International Sew-Right


HYGIENE ArjoHuntleigh Canada




Alpha Controls and Instrumentation

Wayne Safety

Debolt Data Depository




Bellwood Health Services


DuPont Personal Protection

F.O. Safety Eyewear

Reliance Foundry Co.

The Orthotic Works



American Safety Vest

Argus-Hazco CEA Instruments Critical Enviro Tech Draeger Cda GfG Instrumentation Graywolf Sensing Solutions Industrial Scientific Kanomax USA, Inc. Lineman’s Labs Microwatt LifeSafety Solutions



International Sew-Right Lineman’s Labs Motion Industries,

Bellwood Health Services

Ronco Protective Products

The Orthotic Works




3M Canada

Wayne Safety

Bertrand Johnson Acoustics

Zenith Safety Products

Electro Med

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Chums, Glove Guard LP

INDEPENDENT MEDICAL EVALUATIONS Capital Vocational Specialists Workplace Safety & Wellness Solutions

At 5 years, our sensor warranty is the longest on the market. But we expect our sensors to last much longer than that.

Choose the detector with sensors that are warranted for 5 full years, not 12 months.* It’s a mistake to overlook something as small as a sensor when buying gas detectors. That’s because the purchase price of a gas detector is only a fraction of the cost to operate one. Sensor replacement over time can cost you thousands of dollars in sensors, labour, calibration, and downtime. At Dräger, we believe a quality sensor needs to be more than just accurate. It should last, too. That’s why selected sensors in the X-am® 2500, X-am® 5000, and certain Pac® 7000 devices come with a 5-year warranty – the longest on the market. Isn’t it time to start thinking small and saving big? Find out more at


*Applies to certain sensors only.



INFECTION CONTROL PRODUCTS ArjoHuntleigh Canada Deb Canada

INSTRUMENTATION Alpha Controls and Instrumentation


LEGISLATION EcoLog Legislation and EcoLog Legislative Tracker


American Slip


Critical Enviro Tech


Draeger Cda Electro Med Forestry Suppliers GENEQ Inc. Microwatt LifeSafety Solutions

ArjoHuntleigh Canada Jenalex Inc. – Ergonomic Products Starquip Industrial Products




360 Guarding


Brady Canada

Capital Vocational Specialists Workplace Safety & Wellness Solutions

Master Lock Canada Santronics Stonehouse Signs


Crisis Prevention Institute


Danatec Educational Svcs

Cozy Products

MATS, ANTI-FATIGUE Jenalex Inc. – Ergonomic Products Mul-T-Mat

MATS, ANTI-SLIP Mul-T-Mat No Skidding Prod Safeguard Technology


NEWSLETTERS Canadian Occupational Health & Safety News EcoLog Legislation and EcoLog Legislative Tracker


Mecart Inc

Gateway Safety, Inc. International Sew-Right Lakeland Protective Mount Vernon FR NASCO Industries, Inc. Ronco Protective Products Showa



Collins Safety Inc.



Justrite Mfg

Dentec Safety


F.O. Safety Eyewear


Gateway Safety, Inc.


Grace Industries, Inc.

Rockwell Automation,

Dell Tech Lab

Siemens Process Industries & Drives

Pinchin Ltd.

Starquip Industrial Products


DuPont Personal Protection

Workrite Uniform Company – Canada

Martor USA




AirZOne One

YOW Canada

Wayne Safety

Unique Products



OHS Canada Media

International Sew-Right

The Safety Knife Company

OHS Canada Media

VF Imagewear Canada Inc.


Comeau Technique

Electrolab Training



OLFA – North America


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Canadian Occupational Health & Safety News

Great Lakes Safety Products

Portable gas detectors you can count on

Multi Gas Clip Infrared, the 4-gas detector with a battery life of months instead of hours Our Family of Products

Multi Gas Clip Pump Infrared

The only portable multi gas detector with an internal pump that can run for 5 days continuous on a single charge without ever turning it off. Perfect for confined space entry monitoring. Tests for combustible gases (LEL), H2S, CO & O2 Pellistor version available, specs may vary

Single Gas Clip

Eliminate downtime with our ultra-reliable portable single gas detectors & compatible SGC Docks. Tests for H2S, CO or O2

Single Gas Clip Plus

Built-in hibernate mode extends the life of this dependable detector when not in use. Every minute “sleeping” is a minute saved. Tests for H2S or CO

Tests for combustible gases (LEL), H2S, CO & O2

Multi Gas Clip Infrared • • • • • •

2 Month battery life on a single charge Compact, lightweight & durable 1 Year calibration cycle Low maintenance cost Simple, one button operation Detects combustible gases in oxygen enriched or depleted environments • Immune to H2S & silicone poisoning

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Quickly & simply bump test, calibrate, program or data log 4 detectors at one time in seconds. Just snap detectors in & push a button. It’s that easy! Compatible with Single Gas Clip & Single Gas Clip Plus Also available for Multi Gas Clip & Multi Gas Clip Pump

MGC Dock

Portable 4-bay docking station in durable Pelican case. Internal gas cylinder compartment, regulator, pressure gauge & charging cord included with all GCT docks. Compatible with Multi Gas Clip Also available for Single Gas Clip/ Single Gas Clip Plus & Multi Gas Clip Pump

Pellistor version available, specs may vary

Visit us at NSC Congress & Expo, booth# 1800 • +1.972.775.7577 • 1.877.525.0808



International Sew-Right


Justrite Mfg

International Sew-Right

Microwatt LifeSafety Solutions

Wayne Safety


Justrite Mfg



Pacesetter Sales

3M Canada

The Safety Knife Company

Safeguard Technology

Dentec Safety



Draeger Cda

Beyond Rewards Inc.

SOS Emergency Response

Gateway Safety, Inc.

Danatec Educational Svcs


Great Lakes Safety Products


MST/Modern Safety Tech

Electrolab Training


Elite Training Company

Motion Industries, MST/Modern Safety Tech ROYER Safety Direct Sentry Protection Prod Tritech Fall Protection Systems Winter Walking – A Jordan David


Health Sys Group

EcoLog Legislation and EcoLog Legislative Tracker

Natl Inst Of Disability Mgmt

ECOLOG NEWS OHS Canada Media Thomson Reuters

Hand Tools Inst


Lift Truck Safety Training Centre

No Skidding Prod

Master Lock Canada

Safeguard Technology

O’Reilly Health & Safety Consulting



International Sew-Right

The Safety Knife Company Unique Products Wayne Safety Winter Walking – A Jordan David


SECURITY, PADLOCK Master Lock Canada



Danatec Educational Svcs

Team-1 Academy

Draeger Cda

NASCO Industries, Inc.

Hand Tools Inst

University of New Brunswick


Thomson Reuters


American Safety Vest International Sew-Right


American Slip

SHOWERS, EMERGENCY Bradley Corporation CanSafe-SafetyZone Encon Safety Products

Brady Canada

Bradley Corporation

Great Lakes Safety Products

Cartier Chem

International Sew-Right

Collins Safety Inc.


Cozy Products

Glove Guard LP

Dentec Safety

Brady Canada


Grace Industries, Inc.

Forestry Suppliers

ICC The Compliance

Draeger Cda

International Sew-Right

Glove Guard LP

Stonehouse Signs





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Haws Therm-Omega-Tech, Inc.


Blind Flange Lockout.

Preventing Hazardous-Energy Exposure. Add another layer of protection for downstream workers during pipeline maintenance. The Blind Flange Lockout device secures a blind in place until maintenance is complete. It’s easy to use and highly effective – another way Master Lock Safety Solutions is leaving a positive mark. Learn more -




SLEEP MANAGEMENT Alert@Work Human Resource Services

SLIP CONTROL American Slip

SPILL CLEANUP, SUPPLIES, SERVICES Cartier Chem Veolia ES Canada Services Industriels Inc.

SPIROMETERS Benson Medical Instruments

No Skidding Prod


Trusty Step

Bellwood Health Services



Pro-Sapien Software

YOW Canada


Monarch Regulatory Services


Pro-Sapien Software



Acute Environmental & Safety Services

Benson Medical Instruments DEVTRA Inc. – The “CHECKER” ErgoCanada – Ergonomics Portal of Micwil Group of Companies Ltd. Pro-Sapien Software Rockwell Automation, SafetySync


Alert@Work Human Resource Services Bertrand Johnson Acoustics BC Tech Institute Can U Rescue? Crisis Prevention Institute E-Training Electrolab Training Elite Training Company


Health Sys Group


ICC The Compliance

Kanomax USA, Inc.

Intl Safety Equip Assoc



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LEHDER Environmental Services Lift Truck Safety Training Centre Monarch Regulatory Services Natl Inst Of Disability Mgmt O’Reilly Health & Safety Consulting Workplace Safety & Prevention Services YOW Canada

TRANSPORTATION OF DANGEROUS GOODS Veolia ES Canada Services Industriels Inc.

UNIFORM SERVICES International Sew-Right VF Imagewear Canada Inc.



WHMIS, TRAINING, MSDS ETC. Canadian Red Cross Debolt Data Depository ICC The Compliance Monarch Regulatory Services St. John Ambulance National Office

WORK ALONE SAFETY Blackline Safety Grace Industries, Inc.

WORK CLOTHING International Sew-Right Mount Vernon FR Workrite Uniform Company – Canada

WORKSTATIONS ErgoCanada – Ergonomics Portal of Micwil Group of Companies Ltd. Global Furniture Group

Air Systems International Continental Fan Canada Euramco Safety Mecart Inc

VIOLENCE PREVENTION Crisis Prevention Institute



For more information, go to




2017 For products and services directory, please see listings starting on page 46. 360 Guarding Ltd.

1136 Lorimar Dr Mississauaga ON L5S 1R8 905 239-3690 Fax: 905 239-3699 Toll-Free Fax: 877 360-3604 3M Canada Company

300 Tartan Dr London ON N5V 4M9 Toll-Free: 800 265-1840 Toll-Free Fax: 800 479-4453 Mktg Commun Mgr Christina Fox

Fax: 519 747-4608 Toll-Free: 866 448-5075 Pres Ron Campbell

559 Griffith Rd Charlotte NC 28217-3517 704 525-6210 Fax: 704 525-6310 Toll-Free: 888 367-1010 Pres Paul Holmes Air Systems International

A-Med – Oliver Landon Intl Inc.

408-242 Johnson St Kingston ON K7L 1Y3 Location: 100 Harry Walker Pkwy N Newmarket ON L3Y 7B2 905 953-9946 Fax: 905 953-8351 Neutraliser™ Eyewash & Skin-Rinse by A-Med™ c/w Eye-Opener©

• pH Buffer to reduce chances of severe injury caused by caustic burns -HF or HCI acids, Alkali and Tear gas • F reeze Test HS (12, NATO MIL-ST 320731 for chemically critical up to 4 yr. expiry date • E ye-Opener© bottle locator to assist access to the eye • f inger & thumb access to rinse space between eyelids & eyeball • r educe risk of poking bottle into the eye Acute Environmental & Safety Services Inc.

3-730 Bridge St Waterloo ON N2V 2J4 519 747-5075

829 Juniper Cr Chesapeake VA 23320 757 424-3967 Fax: 757 424-5348 Toll-Free: 800 866-8100 Toll-Free Fax: 800 247-5850

Air Systems has been an innovator in breathing air equipment manufacturing since 1984. We strive to be the industry leader and develop technologically advance air systems for all types of industrial air applications. Our Catalog includes Breathing Air Compressors, Grade-D Filtration, Bottled Air Systems, Confined Space Ventilation, Environmental Controls, and Fire/Rescue products. Airzone One Ltd.

222 Matheson Blvd E Mississauga ON L4Z 1X1 905 890-6957 Fax: 905 890-8629 Consultant Charles Geen

Alert@Work Human Resource Services

427 Briarvale Crt Saskatoon SK S7V 1B8 306 975-1165 Fax: 306 652-6161 Toll-Free: 866 975-1165 Owner Carolyn Schur

Alpha Controls and Instrumentation Inc.

6-361 Steelcase Rd W Markham ON L3R 3V8 905 477-2133 Fax: 905 477-4219 Toll-Free: 800 567-8686 Sls Mgr Marc Brand

American Safety Vest


26-2283 Argentia Rd Mississauga ON L5N 5Z2 905 858-3215 Fax: 905 858-3192 Toll-Free: 800 361-3201 Gen Mgr Rose Calabrese ArjoHuntleigh Canada Inc.

300-90 Matheson Blvd W Mississauga ON L5R 3R3 905 238-7880 Fax: 905 238-7881 Toll-Free: 800 665-4831 Toll-Free Fax: 800 309-1116 Arkema Inc.

410-1400 Church St NW Washington DC 20005 202 810-2456 Fax: 202 770-4128 Cust Serv Mgr Madison Castle

900 First Ave King of Prussia PA 19406 610 205-7000 Fax: 610 205-7913 Toll-Free: 800 225-7788

American Slip Meter, Inc.

720 N Indiana Ave Englewood FL 34223 941 681-2431 Fax: 941 681-2487 Pres Bill Stephenson

1020 McNicoll Ave Scarborough ON M1W 2J6 416 495-0926 Fax: 416 495-7943 Toll-Free: 800 387-6198 Team Leader-Admissions Colleen Lamond


Benson Medical Instruments Co.

105 rue Lauder Cowansville QC J2K 2K8 450 266-1850 Fax: 450 266-6130 Toll-Free: 800 363-8340

Bellwood Health Services Inc.

310 Fourth Ave S Suite 5000 Minneapolis MN 55415-1025 612 827-2222 Sls Mgr Dave Mayou; Dir-Mktg Michelle Sahlin S E P T E M B E R / O C T O B E R 2 0 16




Bertrand Johnson Acoustics Inc.

302-5995 boul Gouin O Montréal QC H4J 2P8 514 332-2050; (Customer Service) 514 335-3021. Fax: 514 339-1057 Toll-Free: 800 363-0958 Pres Ninon Bertrand Beyond Rewards Inc.

218 Silvercreek Pkwy N Unit 17A Suite 327 Guelph ON N1H 8E8 Location: 57 Rochelle Dr Guelph ON N1K 1L1 519 821-7440 Fax: 519 821-7680 Pres Lynne Bard; VP/H&S Allan Teal BioFit Engineered Products

PO Box 109 Waterville OH 43566-0109 Location: 15500 Biofit Way Bowling Green OH 43402 419 823-1089 Fax: 419 823-1342 Toll-Free: 800 597-0246 Exec Asst Liz Sworden Blackline Safety

101-1215 13th St SE Calgary AB T2G 3J4 403 451-0327 Toll-Free: 877 869-7212 VP-Industrial Sls Greg Rude Board of Canadian Registered Safety Professionals (BCRSP)

100-6700 Century Ave Mississauga ON L5N 6A4 905 567-7198 Fax: 905 567-7191 Toll-Free: 888 279-2777 Mktg Coord/Commun Coord Arlene Duval Bradley Corporation

W142 N9101 Fountain Blvd Menomonee Falls WI 53051 262 251-6000 Fax: 262 251-5817 Toll-Free: 800 272-3539 Sr Mktg Mgr Kris Alderson Brady Canada

50 Vogell Rd Units 3 & 4 Richmond Hill ON L4B 3K6 905 764-1717 Fax: 905 764-3670 Toll-Free: 800 263-6179



Toll-Free Fax: 800 387-4935 Mktg Rep Jane Flemming British Columbia Institute of Technology

3700 Willingdon Ave Burnaby BC V5G 3H2 604 432-8220 Fax: 604 432-8988 Toll-Free: 800 663-6542 Ext. 8220 Prog Dir David Wood Can U Rescue?

515 Washington St Elora ON N0B 1S0 905 515-0874 Owner L Sheila Hogarth Canadian Occupational Health & Safety News

80 Valleybrook Dr Toronto ON M3B 2S9 416 510-6897 Fax: 416 510-5140 Editor Jeff Cottrill

Canadian Red Cross

170 Metcalfe St Ottawa ON K2P 2P2 613 740-1900 Fax: 613 740-1911 Toll-Free: 877 356-3226 Dir-Mktg/Bus Dev Carolyn Tees CanSafe-SafetyZone – Div. of SafetyZone (Canada)ULC

PO Box 263 Fergus ON N1M 2W8 Location: 525 Glengarry Cres 519 787-1297 Toll-Free: (Customer Service) 800 267-1611 Toll-Free Fax: 800 669-2392 Capital Vocational Specialists Corp

304-2781 Lancaster Rd Ottawa ON K1B 1A7 613 736-9117 Fax: 613 736-9771 Toll-Free: 888 736-9117 Cartier Chemicals Ltd.

2610A boul J.B. Deschamps Lachine QC H8T 1C8 514 637-4631 Fax: 514 637-8804 Toll-Free: 800 361-9432 ohs canada Pres/Mgr-VYTAC Div Bill Robins CD Nova Ltd.

110-19353 22 Ave Surrey BC V3Z 3S6 604 430-5612 Fax: 604 437-1036 Toll-Free: 800 663-0615 CEA Instruments, Inc.

160 Tillman St Westwood NJ 07675 201 967-5660 Fax: 201 967-8450 VP-Sls/Mktg Steven Adelman Cederroth AB

PO Box 715 SE-19427 Upplands Väsby Sweden Location: Kanalvägen 10A Upplands Väsby Sweden +46 8590 96300 Fax: +46 8590 30953 Rep Bertil Hedlund Chairs Limited

7-10 Ilsley Ave Dartmouth NS B3B 1L3 902 468-2854 Fax: 902 468-1269 Toll-Free: 800 565-2854 Pres Joan Downing

Comeau Technique Ltd.

1684 50th Ave Lachine QC H8T 2V5 514 633-1119 Fax: 514 633-9991 Toll-Free: 800 361-2553

Continental Fan Canada Inc.

12-205 Matheson Blvd E Mississauga ON L4Z 3E3 905 890-6192 Fax: 905 890-6193 Toll-Free: 800 779-4021

CorWil Technologies Ltd.

203-1449 St Paul St Kelowna BC V1Y 2E4 778 478-9857 Sr Proj Technologist Powell Maxfield Cozy Products

300 N Oakley Blvd Chicago IL 60612 312 226-2473 Fax: 312 226-2480 Toll-Free: 800 662-5021 Crisis Prevention Institute

600-10850 West Park Pl Milwaukee WI 53224 Fax: 262 979-7162 Toll-Free: 800 558-8976

Chums, Inc.

Critical Environment Technologies Canada Inc.

2424 South 2570 W Salt Lake City UT 84119 801 972-5656 Fax: 801 972-5690 Toll-Free: 800 222-2486 Sls Rep Tesa Montoya

145-7391 Vantage Way Delta BC V4G 1M3 604 940-8741 Fax: 604 940-8745 Toll-Free: 877 940-8741 Gen Mgr Frank Britton

CLARCOR Industrial Air | UAS

Danatec Educational Services Ltd.

4440 Creek Rd Cincinnati OH 45242 513 891-0400 Fax: 513 891-4171 Toll-Free: 800 252-4647 Sls Mgr Bill Sovik Collins Safety Inc.

731 Gardiners Rd Kingston ON K7M 3Y5 613 389-9886; (Customer Service) 514 526-7931 Ext. 230. Fax: 613 389-9943 Ops Mgr Robert McCallum

201-11450 29 St SE Calgary AB T2Z 3V5 800 465-3366 Fax: 403 232-6952 Toll-Free: 800 465-3366 Mktg Mgr Francesco McGrath Deb Canada

42 Thompson Rd W Waterford ON N0E 1Y0 519 443-8697 Fax: 519 443-5160 Toll-Free: (Customer Service) 888 332-7627 Toll-Free Fax: 800 567-1652 Mktg Mgr Zuzana Bleha

BUYERS’ GUIDE 2017 Debolt Data Depository

Box 35046 Midtown Post Office Edmonton AB T5J 0B7 Location: 10818 Jasper Ave 780 428-4992 Fax: 780 633-4025 Sls Mgr Paul J Cachia Dell Tech Laboratories Ltd.

220-100 Collip Cir London ON N6G 4X8 519 858-5021 Fax: 519 858-5026 Pres Jennifer MacDonald

Dentec Safety Specialists, Inc.

100 Harry Walker Pkwy N Newmarket ON L3Y 7B2 905 953-9946 Fax: 905 953-8351 Toll-Free: 888 533-6832 Toll-Free Fax: 888 953-9946 Pres Claudio Dente


PO Box 265 Oakville ON L6K 0A4 Location: 146 Lakeshore Rd W 905 825-0172 Fax: 905 469-8831 Toll-Free: 800 291-4719 Gen Mgr David Lefevre

Draeger Safety Canada Ltd.

1-2425 Skymark Ave Mississauga ON L4W 4Y6 905 212-6600 Fax: 905 212-6602 Toll-Free Fax: 877 651-0906 Sls Mgr Dave Allendorf

Draeger was established in 1889 as a manufacturer of gas detection and respiratory protection and serves customers worldwide. The current portfolio includes stationary and personal gas detection systems, respiratory protection equipment, fire training systems, thermal imaging cameras and alcohol and drug detection units. “Technology for Life” is the guiding philosophy. Whether in clinical applications, industrial safety applications, oil & gas, mining or fire and emergency services, Dräger products protect, support and save lives. Visit our website. DuPont Personal Protection

PO Box 2200 Streetsville Mississauga ON L5M 2H3 Location: 1919 Minnesota Crt Mississauga ON L5N 0C9


Forestry Suppliers Inc.

Fax: 905 816-3062 Toll-Free: 800 387-2122 Mktg/Bus Support Heather Jordan

613 962-9577 Fax: 613 962-0284 Toll-Free: 800 267-7482

E-Training Inc.

Elite Training Company

102 Rawling Cres Brampton ON L6Z 1N8 905 846-5509

PO Box 8397 Jackson MS 39284-8397 Location: 205 W Rankin St Jackson MS 39201-6126 601 354-3565 Fax: 601 355-5126 Toll-Free: 800 647-6450 Toll-Free Fax: 800 543-4203 Supvr Charlie Rogers

Encon Safety Products

Gateway Safety, Inc.

101 – 2314 S Route 59 Plainfield IL 60586 815 556-9384 Ext. 2 Fax: 815 531-1075 Pres Niall O’Malley EcoLog Legislation and EcoLog Legislative Tracker

80 Valleybrook Dr Toronto ON M3B 2S9 416 442-5600 Ext. 3570 Fax: 416 510-5128 Toll-Free: 888 702-1111 Ext. 8 Pub/Editor Lidia Lubka EcoLog News

80 Valleybrook Dr Toronto ON M3B 2S9 416 442-5600 Ext. 3570 Fax: 416 510-5128 Toll-Free: 888 702-1111 Ext. 8 Pub Lidia Lubka EHS Canada Inc.

2964 South Grimsby Rd 18 RR 1 Smithville ON L0R 2A0 905 643-3343 Fax: 905 643-3211 Project Mgr Cathy Courage Electro-Medical Instrument Co.

1-2359 Royal Windsor Dr Mississauga ON L5J 4S9 905 822-3188 Fax: 905 822-9920 Toll-Free: 800 263-6430

Cust Support/Serv Mgr Rick Cameron For over 35 years electro-medical instrument has been supplying/servicing and calibrating hearing testing (Audiometric) instruments and test booths. Supplying basic manual Audiometers to the most advanced Benson Medical computerised testing, hearing conservation management/reporting systems with Automatic Baseline Revision, Individual Left/Right Baselines, STS management and WSIB average calculations at an affordable cost. Visit our website. Electrolab Training Systems

PO Box 320 Belleville ON K8N 5A5 Location: 631 College St E Belleville ON K8N 0A3

6825 W Sam Houston Pkwy N Houston TX 77041 713 466-1449 Fax: 713 466-1703 Toll-Free: 800 283-6266 Mktg Mgr Jenna Villarreal ErgoCanada – Ergonomics Portal of Micwil Group of Companies Ltd.

PO Box 9022 Saskatoon SK S7K 7E7 Location: 102 Wheeler St The Micwil Building Saskatoon SK S7P 0A9 306 382-5995 Fax: 306 382-4995 Toll-Free: 866 335-3746 Pres Michael Craggs ETCOS

96 Terrosa Rd Markham ON L3S 2N1 905 471-9890 Fax: 905 471-6439 Proj Mgr Ravi Sharma Euramco Safety

2746 Via Orange Way Spring Valley CA 91978 619 670-9590 Fax: 619 670-7345 Toll-Free: 800 472-6326 Exair Corporation

11510 Goldcoast Dr Cincinnati OH 45249-1621 513 671-3322 Fax: 513 671-3363 Toll-Free: 800 903-9247 F.O. Safety Eyewear Inc.

200-1916 Dewdney Ave Regina SK S4R 1G9 403 527-3661 Fax: 403 580-8190 Toll-Free: 855 527-3661

11111 Memphis Ave Cleveland OH 44144 216 889-2000 Fax: 216 889-1200 Toll-Free: (Customer Service) 800 822-5347 GENEQ Inc.

10700 rue Secant Montréal QC H1J 1S5 514 354-2511 Fax: 514 354-6948 Toll-Free: 800 463-4363 Pres Maurice Parisé GfG Instrumentation, Inc.

1194 Oak Valley Dr Ste 20 Ann Arbor MI 48108 734 769-0573 Fax: 734 769-1888 Toll-Free: 800 959-0329 Mktg Mgr Paula Shovels

Global Furniture Group

1350 Flint Rd Toronto ON M3J 2J7 416 661-3660 Fax: 416 667-0338 Toll-Free: 877 446-2251 Dir-Mktg Nicole Adams Glove Guard LP

PO Box 946 Highlands TX 77562 Location: 1625 E Houston St 281 426-2714 Fax: 281 426-6135 Toll-Free: 888 660-6133 Office Mgr Linda Hanks Grace Industries, Inc.

305 Bend Hill Rd Fredonia PA 16124 724 962-9231 Fax: 724 962-3611 Toll-Free: 800 969-6933 Sls Mgr Dan Smith

S E P T E M B E R / O C T O B E R 2 0 16




Graywolf Sensing Solutions

6 Research Dr Shelton CT 06484 203 402-0477 Fax: 203 402-0478 Toll-Free: 800 218-7997 Marketing Admin Cassandra Rivera

Great Lakes Safety Products Inc.

3303 Walker Rd Windsor ON N8W 3R9 519 972-6605 Fax: 519 972-6620 Pres/Owner Thomas Diemer Hand Tools Institute

25 North Broadway Tarrytown NY 10591 914 332-0040 Fax: 914 332-1541 Tech Mgr John Foote

Industrial Scientific Corp.

140-120 Pembina Rd Sherwood Park AB T8H 0M2 780 467-2423 Fax: 780 467-2105 Toll-Free: 800 338-3287

International Safety Equipment Association

1901 N Moore St Arlington VA 22209 703 525-1695 Fax: 703 528-2148 Pres Daniel K Shipp

1455 Kleppe Ln Sparks NV 89431 775 359-4712 Fax: 775 359-7424 Toll-Free: 888 640-4297 Mktg Spec Samantha Hoch Health Systems Group

6519A Mississauga Rd Mississauga ON L5N 1A6 905 858-0333 Fax: 905 858-3136 Toll-Free: 888 809-0333 Pres Kim Snider HeartSafe EMS

159 Victoria St Bolton ON L7E 3G9 416 410-4911 Fax: 905 857-7312 Toll-Free: 888 322-3791 Corp Dir-Education Glenn Burke Human Factors North Inc.

202-174 Spadina Ave Toronto ON M5T 2C2 416 596-1252 Fax: 416 596-6946 Accnt/Office Mgr Deanna Cyr

ICC The Compliance Center Inc.

7-205 Matheson Blvd E Mississauga ON L4Z 1X8 905 890-7228 Fax: 905 890-7070 Toll-Free: 888 977-4834 Toll-Free Fax: 866 821-0735


Toll-Free: 800 798-9250 Toll-Free Fax: 800 488-5877 Kanomax USA, Inc.

219 US Highway 206 Andover NJ 07821 973 786-6386 Fax: 973 786-7586 Toll-Free: 800 247-8887

Lakeland Protective Wear, Inc.

59 Bury Crt Brantford ON N3S 0A9 519 757-0700 Fax: 519 757-0799 Toll-Free: 800 489-9131

LEHDER Environmental Services Limited International Sew-Right Co.


58 Sls Mgr Greg Monette

6190 Don Murie St Niagara Falls ON L2E 6X8 905 374-3600 Fax: 905 374-6121

2015 Winners of the OHS Safety apparel and Aluminized Clothing and the Entrepreneur of the Year Award. International Sew Right has been manufacturing and custom designing safety clothing since 1983. Safety Clothing, PPE, Arc Flash, High heat, Hi Vis, Welders Clothing, Tarps,Parkas, Sleeves, Aprons, Shop Coats,Head Protection, Gloves, Mitts for welders, maintenance, High temperature, puncture resistant, Neck Guard over 400 items. We custom design to suit your needs with a No Minimum Order. We ship Internationally / Drop ship as per your instructions. Jenalex Inc. – Ergonomic Products

1711-3230 Yonge St Toronto ON M4N 3P6 416 485-9487 Toll-Free: 800 536-2539 Pres Hans Lofgreen Joldon Diagnostics

200-482 John St Burlington ON L7R 2K7 905 634-8691 Fax: 905 634-8719 Toll-Free: 800 661-4556 Toll-Free Fax: 800 661-4557 Justrite Mfg. Co., L.L.C.

2454 Dempster St Suite 300 Des Plaines IL 60016 847 298-9250 Fax: 847 298-9261 ohs canada

210-704 Mara St Point Edward ON N7V 1X4 519 336-4101 Fax: 519 336-4311 Toll-Free: 877 534-3371 Principal Mark Roehler Branch Office: Edmonton, Alberta: 780 462-4099 Fax: 780 462-4392 Lift Truck Safety Training Centre Inc.

PO Box 22004 Edmonton AB T6L 0A1 780 465-5001 Toll-Free: 888 665-5001 Lind Equipment Ltd.

90B Centurian Dr Markham ON L3R 8C4 905 475-5086 Fax: 905 475-4098 Pres Brian Astl

Lineman’s Testing Laboratories of Canada Limited

46 Meridian Rd Toronto ON M9W 4Z7 416 742-6911 Fax: 416 748-0290 Toll-Free: 800 299-9769 Mktg Mgr Lisa Downs Martor USA

29 – 1235 S Kimps Crt Green Bay WI 54313 920 662-9646 Fax: 920 662-9648

Master Lock Canada

1-3300 Ridgeway Dr Mississauga ON L5L 5Z9 905 828-1212 Fax: 905 829-8952 Toll-Free: 800 227-9599 Toll-Free Fax: 855 829-0022 Dir-Comm Sls/Mktg John Collins Mecart Inc.

110 rue Rotterdam Saint-Augustin-de-Desmaures QC G3A 1T3 418 880-7000 Fax: 418 880-7070 Toll-Free: 866 463-2278 Microwatt LifeSafety Solutions

11141 15th St NE Calgary AB T3K 0Z5 403 250-1594 Toll-Free: 888 388-1592 Toll-Free Fax: 888 812-8370 Dir-Mktg Jonathan Saint

Micwil Group of Companies Ltd.

PO Box 9022 Saskatoon SK S7K 7E7 Location: 102 Wheeler St The Micwil Building Saskatoon SK S7P 0A9 306 382-5995 Fax: 306 382-4995 Toll-Free: 866 335-3746

Monarch Regulatory Services Inc.

20 Kings Gate Dundas ON L9H 3Z7 905 628-6631 Fax: 905 628-9252 Pres Chrim Middleton, DGPA

Motion Industries, Inc.

8985 Fraserwood Crt Burnaby BC V5J 5E8 205 951-1154 Fax: 205 957-5290 Toll-Free: 800 526-9328 Creative/Brand Mgr Amanda Bergen

Mount Vernon FR PO Box 7 Trion GA 30753 Location: 91 Fourth St 706 734-4815 Fax: 706 734-3531

MSA – The Safety Company

23-100 Westmore Dr Toronto ON M9V 5C3 416 620-4225 Toll-Free: 800 672-2222

BUYERS’ GUIDE 2017 Product Mgr Sean Donovan MST, Inc./Modern Safety Techniques

PO Box 87 Hicksville OH 43526-0087 Location: 11370 Breininger Rd 419 542-6645 Fax: 419 542-6475 Toll-Free: 800 542-6646 Pres/Owner Charles Martin

Mul-T-Mat & Supply Co.

4-106 Rayette Rd Vaughan ON L4K 2G3 905 738-3171 Fax: 905 738-8792 Toll-Free: 800 567-6287 Owner Judah Forer Nanofilm Ltd.

OHS Canada Media is Canada’s frontrunning OH&S information & education resource, including OHS Canada Magazine, the nation’s leading publication serving OHS&S professionals since 1985. OHS Canada Media includes; Pipeline Magazine (Canada’s Oil & Gas Safety Magazine), Canadian Occupational Health & Safety News, Canada’s only weekly news source dedicated to occupational health & safety and both &, providing daily news, web-dedicated editorial, video, industry news and much, much more. OLFA – North America

9525 W Bryn Mawr Ave Unit 300 Rosemont IL 60018 847 233-8600 Toll-Free: 800 367-3526 Natl Accnt Mgr Don Joly

10111 Sweet Valley Dr Valley View OH 44125 216 447-1199 Ext. 127 Fax: 216 447-1137 Toll-Free: (Customer Service) 800 8836266 Ext. 127 Sls Rep Gina Montello

Optrel Inc.

NASCO Industries, Inc.

O’Reilly Health & Safety Consulting

3 N E 21st St Washington IN 47501 812 254-7393 Fax: 812 254-6476 Toll-Free: 800 767-4288 Dir-Mktg Andrew Wirts

National Institute of Disability Management and Research

4755 Cherry Creek Rd Port Alberni BC V9Y 0A7 778 421-0821 Ext. 201 Fax: 778 421-0823 Asst Exec Dir Joyce Gravelle

No Skidding Product Inc.

266 Wildcat Rd Toronto ON M3J 2N5 416 667-1788 Fax: 416 667-1783 Toll-Free: 800 375-0571

OHS Canada Media

80 Valleybrook Dr Toronto ON M3B 2S9 416 510-5102 Fax: 416 510-5140 Pub Peter Boxer

PO Box 1454 East Greenwich RI 02818 Location: 5 Division St #35 401 398-7240 Fax: 401 398-2740 VP-Sls Grant Cooper

Stratford ON N5A 5W6 416 294-4141 Owner Yvonne O’Reilly The Orthotic Works

4998A Sixth Line Acton ON L7J 2L8 647 236-2256 Fax: 905 873-3364 Toll-Free: 800 663-2550 Pres Michael T Glogowski Pacesetter Sales & Associates

18 Cardinal Crt McKellar ON P2A 0B4 905 717-1114 Pres Craig Lindsay

Parker Hannifin, Gas Separation & Filtration Division

160 Chisholm Dr Milton ON L9T 3G9 905 693-3000 Fax: 905 876-1958 Toll-Free: 888 342-2623 Mktg Mgr Jennifer Fiorello

Parsons Canada Inc.

100-3715 Laird Rd Mississauga ON L5L 0A3 905 820-1210 Fax: 905 820-1221 Reg Mgr David Kantor Phoenix OHC, Inc.

206R-847 Princess St Kingston ON K7L 1G9 613 544-4046 Pres/Principal Tom Beardall Pinchin Ltd.

2470 Milltower Crt Mississauga ON L5N 7W5 905 363-0678 Fax: 905 363-0681 Toll-Free: 855 746-2446 CRM/Events Coord José Barinque Pro-Sapien Software Limited

69 West Nile St Glasgow United Kingdom G1 2LT +44 (0) 141 353 1165 Mktg Exec Steve Hunter

Reliance Foundry Co. Ltd.

207-6450 148 St Surrey BC V3S 7G7 604 592-4333 Fax: 604 590-8875 Toll-Free Fax: 888 735-5680 Mktg Mgr Jeremy Bradley RKI Instruments, Inc.

33248 Central Ave Union City CA 94587-2010 510 441-5656 Fax: 510 441-5650 Toll-Free: 800 754-5165 Sr Appl Engr John Villalovos Rockwell Automation, Inc.

1201 South Second St Milwaukee WI 53204-2496 414 382-2000 Fax: 414 382-4444 Toll-Free: 800 223-5354 Ronco Protective Products

70 Planchet Rd Concord ON L4K 2C7 905 660-6700 Fax: 905 660-6903 Toll-Free: 877 663-7735 Mktg Mgr Vani Kshattriya



712 rue Principale Lac-Drolet QC G0Y 1C0 819 549-2100 Fax: 819 549-2584 Toll-Free: 800 567-7693 Dir-Bus Dev Jerry Hould Saf-T-Gard International, Inc.

205 Huehl Rd Northbrook IL 60062 847 291-1600 Fax: 847 291-1610 Toll-Free: 800 548-4273 Toll-Free Fax: 888 548-4273 Pres Richard Rivkin

Safeguard Technology Inc.

1460 Miller Pkwy Streetsboro OH 44241-4640 330 995-5200 Fax: 330 995-5201 Toll-Free: 800 989-1695 VP Jerome Kerlek Safety Direct Ltd.

PO Box 3026 Sherwood Park AB T8H 2T1 Location: 100-2210 Premier Way Sherwood Park AB T8H 2L2 780 464-7139 Fax: 780 464-7652 Pres Brett Zeissler SafetySync Corporation

1324 36 Ave NE Calgary AB T2E 8S1 403 668-6402 Toll-Free: 866 668-6402 Toll-Free Fax: 855 321-0003 St. John Ambulance National Office

400-1900 City Park Dr Ottawa ON K1J 1A3 613 236-7461 Fax: 613 236-2425 Toll-Free: 888 840-5646 Santronics, Inc.

PO Box 192 Sanford NC 27331 Location: 3010 Lee Ave Sanford NC 27332-6210 919 775-1223 Fax: 919 777-2856 Toll-Free: 800 628-1632 Toll-Free Fax: 800 356-2729 Sls Rep Barbara Robinson S E P T E M B E R / O C T O B E R 2 0 16




Sentry Protection Products

3 – 16927 Detroit Ave Lakewood OH 44107 216 228-3200 Fax: 216 228-3214 Toll-Free: 888 265-8660 Pres James Ryan Showa

253 rue Michaud Coaticook QC J1A 1A9 819 849-6381 Fax: 819 849-6120 Toll-Free: 800 565-2378 Siemens Process Industries & Drives

3333 Old Milton Parkway Alpharetta GA 30005-4437 770 751-2000 Fax: 678 297-8316 Toll-Free: 800 241-4453 Sonic Soil Sampling Inc.

668 Millway Ave Concord ON L4K 3V2 905 660-0501 Fax: 905 660-7143 Toll-Free: 877 897-6642 Toll-Free Fax: 888 251-7445

SOS Emergency Response Technologies

126-160 Tycos Dr North York ON M6B 1W8 416 789-7689 Fax: 416 789-5470 Toll-Free: 888 645-8323

Starquip Industrial Products Ltd.

4-40 Dynamic Dr Toronto ON M1V 2W2 416 286-7116 Fax: 416 286-8595 Sec-Treas C Stella

Stonehouse Signs, Inc.

PO Box 546 Arvada CO 80001 Location: 5550 West 60th Ave Arvada CO 80003 303 422-2356 Fax: 303 467-1382 Toll-Free: (Customer Service) 800 525-0456 Toll-Free Fax: 800 255-0883 Mktg Mgr Becky Roche




PO Box 290 Bond Head ON L0G 1B0 Location: 5667 King Rd Nobleton ON L0G 1N0 905 859-3901 Fax: 905 859-4345 T. Harris Environmental Management Inc.

101-93 Skyway Ave Toronto ON M9W 6N6 416 679-8914 Fax: 416 679-8915 Toll-Free: 888 275-8436 Pres/CEO C John Fisher

Team-1 Academy Inc.

19-760 Pacific Rd Oakville ON L6L 6M5 905 827-0007 Fax: 905 827-0049 Ops Mgr Brian Kovalcik

TEAM-1 Academy Inc. is an industry leader for the last 20 years. Providing Professional Safety Training, Equipment Sales + Service + Inspections, Consulting & Renewable Energy Services, Fortune 500 companies, Industry, Construction, Health Care, Utilities, Fire Services, Police, EMS, Military, Government and numerous others. Tenaquip Ltd.

22555 aut Transcanadienne Senneville QC H9X 3L7 Toll-Free: 800 661-2400 Cust Serv Mgr Chris Oliver The Safety Knife Company

7948 Park Dr St. Louis MO 63117 314 645-3900 Fax: 314 645-0728 Dir-Mktg Laura Wissman

Therm-Omega-Tech, Inc.

353 Ivyland Rd Warminster PA 18974-2205 215 674-9992 Fax: 215 674-8594 Toll-Free: 877 379-8258 Sls/Mktg Mgr Tom Ruggierio Thomson Reuters

2075 Kennedy Rd Toronto ON M1T 3V4 416 609-3800 Toll-Free: 800 387-5164 Toll-Free Fax: 877 750-9041 Mktg Mgr-Legal Print/Inside Sls/Print Retention Isabelle Rocher ohs canada

Tritech Fall Protection Systems Ltd.

3610 Manchester Rd SE Calgary AB T2G 3Z5 403 287-1499 Ext. 118 Fax: 403 287-0818 Toll-Free: (Customer Service) 877 2870808 Ext. 118 Terr Mgr Ruchi Ryley Trusty Step International

271 Western Ave Lynn MA 01904 781 593-9800 Fax: 781 598-4937 Toll-Free: 800 323-0047 Pres Stan Handman

Unique Products Inc.

16865 110 Ave Edmonton AB T5P 1G8 780 974-7039 Fax: 780 444-0807 Toll-Free: 780 974-7039 Toll-Free Fax: 780 444-0807 Owner Pat Hanlon University of New Brunswick

10 McKay Dr Room 251 Moncton NB E1A 3N3 506 453-4694 Fax: 506 447-3169 Toll-Free: 888 259-4222 Dir-Mktg/Commun Belinda Elliott-Bielecki

Veolia ES Canada Services Industriels Inc.

1705 3e Av Montréal QC H1B 5M9 514 645-1621 Fax: 514 645-5133 Toll-Free: (Customer Service) 888 778-6699 VF Imagewear Canada, Inc.

9146 Yellowhead Trail NW Edmonton AB T5B 1G2 780 479-4444 Ext. 0 Fax: 780 477-1718 Toll-Free: 800 667-0700 Ext. 0 Toll-Free Fax: 866 419-1110 Dir-Sls/Mktg Tim LeMessurier Wayne Safety Inc.

1250 Sheppard Ave W Toronto ON M3K 2A6 416 661-1100 Fax: 416 661-3447 Toll-Free: 800 387-3713 Mgr Aaron Nisker Branch Office: Calgary, Alberta: 800 3154866 Fax: 403 273-4662 Web: calgary@ Winter Walking – A Jordan David Company

400 Babylon Rd Horsham PA 19044 215 441-9595 Fax: 215 441-9642 Toll-Free: 888 667-5477

Workplace Safety & Prevention Services

Suite 300-5110 Creekbank Rd Mississauga ON L4W 0A1 905 614-1400 Fax: 905 614-1414 Toll-Free: 877 494-9777 Workplace Safety & Wellness Solutions

Vaughan ON L4K 4K7 416 270-3181 Fax: 416 907-9122 Occup Ther Anna Matrosov Workrite Uniform Company – Canada

7031 68 Ave NW Edmonton AB T6B 3E3 780 466-6385 Fax: 780 466-7560

YOW Canada Inc.

1306 Algoma Rd Ottawa ON K1B 3W8 613 688-2845 Fax: 613 248-0711 Toll-Free: 866 688-2845 Working at Heights in Ontario now available!

YOW Canada Inc. provides high quality occupational health and safety training and materials to aid Canadians with safety compliance. Bilingual online courses includes WHMIS 2015, Transportation of Dangerous Goods, Workplace Violence & Harassment, and much more. YOW Canada Inc. – Safety Compliance Made Easy! Zenith Safety Products

22555 aut Transcanadienne Senneville QC H9X 3L7 Toll-Free: 866 457-1163 Toll-Free Fax: 866 457-1164

ADVERTISING DIRECTORY C A N A D A For ad, see page 16 For ad, see page 63


3M For ad, see page 53 For ads, see pages 2, 5, 7, 9 11 and 64


Dentec Safety For ad, see page 19 For ad, see page 39


Red Cross

Draeger For ad, see page 31

www.draë For ad, see page 49

Securo Vision

Gas Clip For ad, see page 42 For ad, see page 51

Showa Best Glove

Glove Guard For ad, see page 13

Latchways SRL offers a dependable means of fall protection and has been designed for use in a number of different environments enabling a hands-free fall protection solution. Utilizing modern engineering and innovative design, they are the most advanced, reliable selfretracting lanyards on the market today.


Alberta Health


Workrite For ad, see page 37 For ad, see page 43

Canadian Occupational Health & Safety News

So, what’s on your mind? MAY/JUNE 2016

JULY/AUGUST 2016 Does semi-autonomous technology boost road safety? Yes 35% No 38% Not Sure


Total Votes


Do you think that drones present a safety concern? Yes 78% No 15% Don’t Know


Total Votes


Go on — have your say. Check out to vote in our latest poll.

S E P T E M B E R / O C T O B E R 2 0 16


TIME OUT “I’LL BE FAKE”: Science fiction briefly became reality for

a few Toronto police officers on August 3, when they found themselves facing the Terminator. The Toronto Star reported that a woman had called the cops after seeing what looked like a tall, muscular man with a bloody face and leather jacket standing outside her home, holding a gun. Officers rushed to the scene and surrounded the figure, which stood silently. Closer inspection revealed the “gunman” to be a mannequin of movie legend Arnold Schwarzenegger, dressed as the famous T-800 cyborg killer from the Terminator series. Good thing it was a false alarm, since Robocop was not available.

TRUE BELIEVER: The crew and passengers of a WestJet

flight nearly experienced some divine wrath on August 31, when an apparent religious fanatic tried to exit the plane while it was in the air. According to a CBC News report, witnesses noticed the 20-year-old man constantly praying during the first three hours of the trip from Toronto to Edmonton. Then he put on a backpack and moved towards the front door, asking a flight attendant to let him off. As passengers restrained the man, he started calling them “non-believers” and demanded that any “believers” on the plane kill him immediately. Police later arrested him for causing a disturbance. Hopefully, he will postpone his trip to the pearly gates now.

NO DOGS ALLOWED: Not everybody loves man’s

best friend. A 24-year-old woman in Mississauga, Ontario learned this the hard way when she tried to bring her service dog with her to a walk-in medical clinic on September 4. The Australian Shepherd named Autumn is a guide dog for the woman, who is blind in one eye, CityNews reported. But when she went to the clinic to deal with back problems and breathing issues, the doctor and nurse refused to serve her because they both had phobias of dogs. But one doctor from a second clinic agreed to see her, and he even gave Autumn a full apology petting.

ROAD LESS TRAVELLED: Whoever said that sidewalks always had to lead somewhere? When a contractor in Smithers, British Columbia was renovating a commercial building he owns this year, he found that a municipal bylaw states that any commercial construction amounting to $75,000 or more requires the installation of a sidewalk. So he built the most basic one he could: a 30-metre strip of concrete by the highway without a curb and connected to nothing. This literal Sidewalk to Nowhere cost $10,000, according to a Vancouver Sun report on August 24. Someday, the path will be continued somewhere and could even become a tourist attraction. BRAINS BEAT BULLETS: The manager of a cell-phone shop in Paterson, New Jersey nearly foiled two armed robbers on August 17 with a simple plan: locking them inside. As the gun-toting robbers were collecting money and merchandise, the manager told the other employees to leave before he 62


ohs canada

slammed down the storefront gate, trapping the robbers in the store, NBC 4 New York reported. As the manager called the police, the panicked crooks begged a crowd that had gathered outside to let them out, but to no avail. The robbers eventually escaped through a back window.

THIS BUD’S FOR YOU: An accident on a highway overpass in New York City injured a truck driver, but it must have been a dream come true for many in the area. A Budweiser truck flipped over on the highway’s eastbound lane on August 8, spilling about 300 cases of beer. Some booze even dripped over the side of the overpass down to the streets below. Witnesses told local news website DNAinfo that the area had smelled like a bar. Traffic was backed up for miles, which presumably allowed stranded drivers time for a free pint.

STING OPERATION: Cops may be brave when facing

violent criminals, but it took bees to drive a bunch of cops out of their police station in Carbondale, Pennsylvania on August 30. City workers first noticed the stingers in the building in the morning. Soon, hundreds of the bees drove employees from the first floor to work from other stations, according to local paper The Times-Tribune. A beekeeper came to the rescue by removing more than 400 bees from the building, with plans to return for other buzzers that had settled within the brick exterior of the third floor.

PEPPER-DRONEY PIZZA: Drones are used for many tasks these days. Soon, they may be delivering pizzas to us, as Domino’s recently conducted a live demonstration of drone pizza delivery in Auckland, New Zealand. The test was successful enough that the corporation plans to initiate full drone service in the country by the end of the year, The Guardian reported on August 25. One drone manufacturer has already expressed safety concerns, as the flying vehicles might hit power lines or other aircraft. But it might be too little, too late: 7-Eleven has already gone ahead with commercial drone delivery in the United States. BUZZ OFF: A library in New Zealand has come up with a

novel way of applying a mosquito device, except that it was not used to repel bloodsuckers, but humans. The Papanui Library in the South Island city of Christchurch installed the device, which emits a high-frequency buzz that can be heard only by people under 25, to deter youths from loitering outside the library and intimidating users of the facility, Reuters reported on September 9. The public and rights activists criticized the move, pointing out that libraries should be places where children and teenagers are welcome. Concerns over potential health problems from exposing children to high-frequency sounds were also raised. While the mosquito device has been ditched, recent customer feedback indicated that library users reported feeling safer entering the library. Follow us on Twitter @OHSCanada



Every day, Occupational Health and Safety teams strive to prevent work-related injuries, illnesses and fatalities. They educate employers, train employees, and offer resources to keep our workforce safe. But some health and safety plans may not include sun safety, even though more than quarter (27.4%) of Albertans have a job that requires them to work outdoors. In fact, every year our outdoor workforce is exposed to about 6 to 8 times more ultraviolet radiation (UVR) than an indoor worker, making them 2.5 to 3.5 times more likely to be diagnosed with skin cancers. Because sun exposure can be an unavoidable element of outdoor work, precautions should be taken to protect these workers.

OUR OUTDOOR WORKERS ARE AT RISK In Canada, skin cancer accounts for approximately 33% of all new cancer cases, and UVR exposure is the primary cause of up to 90% of all skin cancers. Melanoma - the most fatal form of skin cancer - is now the seventh most common cancer in Alberta. With an estimated 778,500 Albertans potentially exposed to UVR through their occupation, prevention is the best tool to reduce the impact of sun exposure. While outdoor workers also need to take steps to protect themselves from the sun, it’s more important than ever for employers to protect the health and productivity of their workforce.

SUN SAFETY JUST MAKES SENSE Every year, the direct and indirect costs of skin cancer in Alberta total more than $7.6 million. Sun safety programs can help reduce the cost of ill health and maximize your organization’s return on investment. It’s just good business to protect the health and productivity of your workforce by including sun safety as a key component of your health and safety plans. Fewer absence days caused by the associated conditions of sunburn.

A healthier and better informed workforce results in higher productivity.

Protection from legal claims and litigation.

Lowered health care and insurance costs.

WHAT’S MISSING FROM YOUR SAFETY PLAN? A comprehensive sun safety plan goes beyond just Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). The Be Sunsible program developed by Alberta Health Services, is a straight forward, four step program that provide tools and resources to inspire and empower workplaces to adopt sun safety best practices. The program will guide you through the development and implementation of a customized, comprehensive sun safety program that meets your organization’s needs. Visit today to access free tools and resources, and learn how your organization can implement a sun safety program as part of your 2017 health and safety planning. Sun is always in the forecast. Start planning today. Together, we can reduce the risk of cancer in Alberta.

Funding provided, in whole or in part by Alberta Health. Provision of funding by Alberta Health does not signify that this project represents the policies or views of Alberta Health.

Take the first step in protecting your outdoor workers.

Protecting you from what you can’t see. Where you see sparks, melting metal and fumes, you face a threat that’s more dangerous than anything that meets the eye. It’s called manganese. 3M helps keep you safe by applying advanced electrostatic media to respiratory protection solutions. All so you can stay focused on your craft.

See how we can help protect you from asbestos, silica, mould and manganese. Magnification of Manganese 3M is a trademark of 3M Company. Used under license in Canada. © 2016, 3M. All rights reserved.

OHS September/October 2016  
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