Ministry of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development (MOLTSD) officials have launched a province-wide campaign , targeting “falls from heights” in single home residential and “struck by equipment” hazards across all sectors of construction. The year-long initiatives are intended to raise awareness of workplace hazards and promote compliance with the Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA) and its regulations.
Workers on residential construction projects must take working at heights training if they may use, or are required to use fall protection, such as travel restraint systems; fall restricting systems; and fall arrest systems.
From April 1, 2023 to March 31, 2024, MOLTSD inspectors will be conducting an education, outreach and awareness campaign, followed by a number of targeted proactive field visits focusing on the enforcement components, as part of this health and safety initiative, namely to ensure that workers exposed to fall hazards are using a fall protection system; are adequately trained in its use and given adequate oral and written instructions by a competent person; and using the fall protection system properly.
Just like falls from heights, struck-by incidents are also one of the leading causes of injury in the construction industry. The most serious struck-by injuries occur when a worker is stuck by a moving vehicle or piece of equipment. Also, many other incidents are the result of tip-over and rollovers, or by individuals being struck or crushed by equipment (e.g., result of operator blind spots) or hit or struck by tools, falling materials and loads or vehicles.
During phase one, the ministry focuses on education, outreach and awareness and works with health and safety associations to raise awareness and provide resources, training and education to workplace parties (for example, employers, labour associations and workers) on that initiative’s focus.
The goal is to give workplace parties tools and knowledge to comply with health and safety requirements.
During phase two, the ministry conducts a focused inspection blitz with inspectors conducting field visits to check that employers are complying with the Occupational Health and Safety Act and its regulations, and to raise awareness about specific issues at the workplaces they are visiting. Inspectors will engage with workplaces to promote compliance, supported by the Public Health and Safety Association.