Here’s How ‘Safety’ Changes in British Columbia During the Summer Months
Vancouver is arguably never more beautiful than during the summer months. The transition from winter to spring and from spring to summer happens quickly in the Vancouver area and results in dramatic temperature and weather changes. The summer season in Vancouver brings with it much warmer temperatures and much less rainfall. Conditions are less cold and less slippery, therefore, the work environment in some industries like construction, fire fighting, mining, forestry and law enforcement adapts slightly to take advantage of the weather.
More ‘Outdoors’ Work and a Variety of Safety Challenges
The nicer weather means a whole host of industries can operate at increased capacity. This is particularly true for industries like ‘paining’, ‘construction’ and ‘landscaping’. However, increased activity in these industries means exposure to a different set of safety challenges than employers and employees are used to in the cooler months. Workers are often expected to work outdoors for longer hours which can expose them to higher temperatures and depending on the nature of the work more safety risks if they’re expected to work on different equipment to facilitate the work.
Make Sure You Have Access to Fall Protection Gear
In industries like painting and construction the summertime means more work that is performed at great heights. When workers are expected to climb ladders or operate cranes it’s vital that they have access to fall protection gear that will prevent injury and death. Although slippery surfaces are often more anticipated in the winter months, the increased volume of work being done in the summertime at higher elevations means the danger is just as real. Pickering Safety recommends these fall protection harnesses to safeguard against serious injury.
Re-think Those First Aid Kits
Many components of first aid are effected by the summer weather. Workers clothing, at-work nutrition and hydration all need to be re-thought during the summer especially when it’s expected they’ll be working in ‘exposed’ conditions for extended periods of time. We recommend checking out WCB requirements for ‘seasonal’ industries using the WCB first aid kit tool on our website. It’s important for both the employee and the employer to take these changing conditions seriously. Pickering Safety offers first aid supplies for all seasons. Our supplies are of the highest quality and our wholesale prices make us a good fit for workers and business owners who want to invest in their safety and the safety of their employees.
Talk to Us About What Specific First Aid Products to Invest in During the Summer Months
WorkSafe BC cases are playing a crucial role in highlighting important issues that are caused by unsafe working conditions. Unsafe work practices and conditions can cause the workers to either be exposed directly to danger, or suffer from conditions that can lead to problems. In 2017, new WorkSafeBC issues have been arising that deserve attention because they are directly related to employee safety and may even influence new legislation in the future that employers should be aware of.
Mental Health and WorkSafeBC
In recent years WorkSafeBC has had to start paying attention to the many mental health cases that have emerged on job sites. The most notable case identified by WorkSafeBC is the suicide case of firefighter Ernie Dombrowski, as, according to WorkSafeBC, he suffered from workplace trauma and his family was awarded damages. Ernie’s case is a notable case that could lead to developments regarding the issue of mental health awareness, as there is a need to identify how work conditions can cause stress and mental issues specifically issues such as PTSD. The decision, according to Surrey Firefighters Association president Mike McNamara, will make it possible for other first responders to make claims related to mental health.
Holding Workers and Employers Accountable for Properly Wearing Safety Equipment
The second prominent case of WorkSafeBC highlights the issue of safety provision by employers, by providing research on how young workers in the industry generally do not wear safety equipment to prevent damage from loud noises, according to a member of WorkSafeBC, “Among construction workers age 21 or younger, 24 per cent reported not wearing hearing protection, as compared with 13 per cent of workers over age 50 and 11 per cent of workers in all other age groups. The data was collected in 2016 from more than 160,000 hearing tests — about 50,000 in construction — conducted by B.C. employers as part of hearing-loss prevention programs”. The case is important because it could increase the pressure on employers to not only provide hearing equipment but also encourage employers hold workers accountable for properly wearing the provided equipment on the job site.
Asbestos Testing and Pre-testing the Job Site
The third leading case, of WorkSafe BC is a case that could change the safety precautions in the construction industry. According to WorkSafe BC research, safety from Asbestos during construction is essential. The problem in construction industry in Canada is that while demolishing old houses there could be dangerous for workers, if the premises are not tested for asbestos safety beforehand. Asbestos can cause lung diseases and could even lead to the death of workers. Some of the materials or places containing asbestos could be:
- Vinyl tiles and linoleum sheet flooring;
- Roof felt and shingles;
- Loose, blown-in insulation, such as vermiculite;
- Gypsum board filling compound, and patching and joint compound for walls and ceilings;
- Incandescent light fixture backing;
- Deck under sheeting.
(*List provided by WorkSafeBC)
The above cases could be influential in deciding the future of work place safety precautions and the measure employers would have to take to ensure employees’ mental and physical health safety.
Pickering Safety Can Help You Meet WorkSafeBC Requirements and Provide a Safe Working Environment for Your Employees
The Accident Raises Important Questions about WCB Regulations
The death of a construction worker in Saanich, British Columbia has sparked concerns that not enough is being done by the BC government to enforce safety in the work place.
Ronald Huetzelmann died on January 15th 2017 of injuries he suffered on January 10th. Huetzelmann “fell from the third floor of the Shire Urban Living development, currently under construction on Quadra Street”. Apparently, he was working on the third floor of the development without a safety harness. Irene Lanzinger, president of the B.C. Federation of Labour has commented: “Why Huetzelmann wasn’t using a safety harness while working three storeys off the ground in high winds will be a central question for the Workers’ Compensation Board to delve into”. It’s not yet known whether the WCB would have required the use of a harness in the circumstances Huetzelmann was working in on Jan. 10th 2017.
The WCB’s Policy on the Impact of Weather on the Workplace
A further concern raised by the incident is whether Huetzelmann should have been working at that height at all given that January 10th was a particularly icy and windy day. There is concern that if the WCB doesn’t have clear weather-dependent regulations for such circumstances – they should develop some.
A further comment from Lanzinger chillingly reminds the public of the B.C. Federation of Labour’s opinion on breaches of WCB regulation: “We believe that if an employer’s negligence causes the death of a worker, then the employer should face jail time,” Lanzinger said.
Huetzelmann’s death is a tragic reminder of the importance of safety in the work place and some of the B.C. Federation of Labour’s comments since the incident should remind all employers and workers that the safety industry is no-joke and regulations will be enforced. When followed appropriately, safety regulations should serve to prevent unnecessary deaths in the workplace and it is the employers who will be held accountable if their employees are not adhering to safety regulations in the workplace.
Pickering Safety Can Help You Make Sure You’re Meeting WCB Requirements
Pickering Safety wants to make meeting and surpassing WCB requirements easy for employers and employees alike. It is Pickering Safety’s mission to prevent accidents large or small as any injury, regardless of the scale can effect productivity in the workplace and quality of life for the injured party. Furthermore, while many suppliers simply retail products that ‘do the job’, Pickering Safety is aware that the quality of the products you buy to meet WCB requirements can save lives in the workplace. Many accidents and injuries happen not because safety equipment is completely lacking but because when push-comes-to-shove, the durability of the equipment is found defective.
If you have questions about what equipment you need on the job please give us a call. We have all the safety equipment you’ll need on a construction site including hard hats and fall protection equipment.
Accidents and injuries can occur anywhere – at home, at the workplace, while driving or while participating in sports events. They are not wished for but they do happen. Hence, it is essential to be prepared for such medical emergencies.
Keeping a first-aid kit at home and in the office can help you respond effectively to common injuries and emergencies.
Here are the top ten reasons to keep a first-aid kit at your home and office:
1.Treat Injuries Quickly:
First-aid kits help you handle the medical emergencies as quickly as possible. In an emergency, a delay of just a single minute can cause irreconcilable damage. These kits offer basic and instant care for common medical injuries like injuries, burns, cuts etc.
2.Pickering Safety Can Build Kits Custom for Your Home or Workplace:
Pickering Safety first-aid kits are customizable. If you work in a particular niche, we can build a first-aid kit that contains suitable emergency equipment. We provide first-aid kits to a wide array of businesses and professionals in the medical industry, police force and many businesses throughout the Lower Mainland.
3.Everything You Need in One Place:
A first-aid kit contains all vital medical products in one easy location. So, in case of emergency, you do not have to waste valuable time assembling the appropriate medical items.
4.Less Risk of Complication:
A well-equipped first-aid kit, in most cases, can prevent further complication with the injury or medical condition. Keeping a medical kit handy can be cost effective because it’s less likely a wound treated immediately with a first-aid kit will require complex attention in the future.
5.Very Compact Package:
First-aid kits contain all the essential medical contents in a very compact package. You can really take a first-aid kit with you anywhere, whether you’re travelling or living/working in a small space. There’s really no excuse not to keep one on hand!
6.Keep Antibiotics Within Arms Reach:
In case of a cut, it’s imperative to use antibiotics as soon as possible to prevent infection. Pickering Safety First-Aid Kits contain basic antibiotic ointments to be used in emergencies.
7.Stop Blood Loss Immediately:
Sometimes injuries are messy. Applying gauze and bandage immediately will stop the blood loss. It’s difficult to stop blood loss efficiently without the proper medical products on hand and prolonged blood loss can be quite dangerous.
8.Relieve the Pain of a Burn Instantly:
If a burn or scald occurs, first-aid treatment should be applied to the affected area as quickly as possible. The goal is to relieve the pain and prevent further damage. Our Second Skin products make particularly useful additions to any first-aid kit.
9.Prevent the Discomfort of Skin Irritation or Bug Bites:
Wounds and insect bites can be tremendously uncomfortable, if handled immediately and carefully with the appropriate first-aid treatments, the irritation can heal faster and in a more effective way. This will prevent scarring!
10.Be a Helping Hand to a Child or Friend:
If nothing else convinces you – keep in mind that the people around you may not be as prepared as you are. Your first-aid kit may come in handy if anyone around you experiences any of the injuries mentioned above. Kids and elderly people are most susceptible to injuries and accidents. First-aid kits act as an indispensable medical item for all.
Need Help Building a First-Aid Kit for Your Home or Office Place? Browse Our Selection or Call Pickering Safety. We Would Be Happy to Build One for You.