WorkSafeBC focuses on preventing falls in manufacturing
March 11, 2019 – WorkSafeBC has announced it will focus its 2019 high-risk strategy for manufacturing on preventing slips, trips and falls, which cause a wide number of injuries throughout the sector.
WorkSafeBC, which is British Columbia's workers' compensation board, says that conditions that lend themselves to slips, trips, and falls are often not perceived as significant hazards, but they can easily lead to severe injuries – about a fifth of the injuries in this category in manufacturing are defined as serious.
“Contributing factors to injuries are often seasonal — such as slippery surfaces after rain or snow — or are indirectly related to the manufacturing process,” says Dan Strand, director of prevention field services with WorkSafeBC. “We’re tackling complacency around these avoidable incidents by educating employers and workers through inspections, and providing effective resources.”
Those efforts will be reinforced in 2019 with the development of an employer resource and two marketing campaigns – one that addresses slips, trips and falls generally and another that highlights winter-related risks.
Strand explained that when WorkSafeBC developed its high-risk strategy for 2018-20, it recognized that flexibility would be needed to add other focus areas as required.
Released last year, the Manufacturing High Risk Strategy addresses seven strategic focus areas: safeguarding and lockout, powered tools, hand tools (knives), material handling (falling objects), falls from elevation, falls on the same level and mobile equipment.
WorkSafeBC’s high-risk strategies identify and target industries and employers with a high risk of serious workplace injury and a significant contribution to the serious-injury rate. High-risk strategies include four industry sectors: construction, forestry, health care and manufacturing.
More information about the Manufacturing High Risk Strategy, including 2019 deliverables and timelines, is available at worksafebc.com.
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