In order for everyone to be prepared for emergencies, every project needs an emergency response plan before work begins. An emergency is any situation that has the potential to harm the life, health, or safety of a person, public property, or the environment.
The purpose of an emergency response plan is to make sure that emergency procedures are in place and every worker is prepared to respond to any emergency in a correct, timely, consistent, and dependable manner.
Emergency procedures at the project
Constructors are responsible for ensuring that each project has written emergency procedures and that these procedures are followed. All emergency procedures must be reviewed with any joint health and safety committees or the health and safety representatives, if present. Emergency procedures must be posted in main area where it can be seen by workers at the project.
Rescue of Workers Underground
Before work at a project begins employers must have emergency procedures for rescuing underground workers. Post copies signed by the employer and supervisors of underground workers around the project. Practice all these procedures and follow them in an emergency.
At least four workers at a project must have underground rescue training by a competent person appointed by a Director. If there are fewer than four workers at the project, all the workers must be trained. Employers must supply rescue workers with appropriate and necessary rescue equipment and the workers must be readily available if an emergency arises. Rescue workers must have completed training within 30 days before work on tunnels begin and be retrained at least every thirty days. Before a project begins, the supervisor must designate a rescue worker to inspect and test all rescue equipment every thirty days.
Self- Contained Breathing Apparatus
If a tunnel and shaft’s combined length is more than 45 metres, every rescue worker must be given a self-contained breathing apparatus with a full facemask. A competent person must train rescue workers in the proper operation of the self-contained breathing apparatus. Training must be repeated every thirty days.
If the underground space is less than 100 metres, the self-contained breathing apparatus must have a minimum rating for 30 minutes of use. If the underground space is between 100 – 150 metres, it must have a minimum rating for 60 minutes of use. For spaces longer than 150 m, it must be rated for at least 90 minutes of use.
Every self-contained breathing apparatus that is designated for emergency rescues must be the same model by the same manufacturer. Keep the self-contained breathing apparatuses readily available and near an access point to underground work area. A sufficient number of self-contained breathing apparatuses must be available on the project at any given time (with four as a minimum) for all rescue work. A competent person must inspect every self-contained breathing apparatus at least once a month, or more often if required by the manufacturer.
Self Rescue Respirator
Workers who may enter a tunnel or shaft must be given their own self-rescue respirator which provides protection against hazardous gases. They must be trained to use, care and maintain the respirator as well as its limitations per the manufacturer’s specifications. Workers must keep their respirators nearby while working in a tunnel or shaft.
Emergency Rescue of Workers from a Suspended Work Platform, Boatswain’s Chair or in a Hoisting Operation
Before working on a boatswain’s chair and suspended work platform for the first time, workers must be trained in elements of emergency rescue procedures and workers must be able to competently use the emergency controls.
Employers are ultimately responsible for ensuring a competent prepares written emergency rescue procedures for suspended work platforms and boatswain’s chairs. The site-specific work plan must include a copy of these procedures. Workers on these suspended platforms and boatswain chairs must be able to alert rescue workers in an emergency situation.
Written emergency rescue procedures are also required in any hoisting operation and these procedures must be communicated to all workers. Construction Projects regulation also requires that before workers use any fall arrest system or safety net on a project, the employer must develop written rescue procedures.
O. Reg. 213/91
Part I GENERAL
17. (1) A constructor shall establish for a project written procedures to be followed in the event of an emergency and shall ensure that the procedures are followed at the project.
(2) The constructor shall review the emergency procedures with the joint health and safety committee or the health and safety representative for the project, if any.
(3) The constructor shall ensure that the emergency procedures are posted in a conspicuous place at the project.
[O. Reg. 145/00, s. 11]
18. The constructor shall ensure that every worker at the project has ready access to a telephone, two-way radio or other system of two-way communication in the event of an emergency.
[O. Reg. 145/00, s. 11]
Part II GENERAL CONSTRUCTION
26.1 (1) A worker shall be adequately protected by a guardrail system that meets the requirements of subsections 26.3(2) to (8).
(2) Despite subsection (1), if it is not practicable to install a guardrail system as that subsection requires, a worker shall be adequately protected by the highest ranked method that is practicable from the following ranking of fall protection methods:
1. A travel restraint system that meets the requirements of section 26.4.
2. A fall restricting system that meets the requirements of section 26.5.
3. A fall arrest system, other than a fall restricting system designed for use in wood pole climbing, that meets the requirements of section 26.6.
4. A safety net that meets the requirements of section 26.8.
(3) The components of any system listed in subsection (2) shall be designed by a professional engineer in accordance with good engineering practice, and shall meet the requirements of any of the following National Standards of Canada standards that are applicable:
1. CAN/CSA-Z259.1-05 : Body Belts and Saddles for Work Positioning and Travel Restraint.
2. CAN/CSA-Z259.2.5-12 : Fall Arresters and Vertical Lifelines
3. CAN/CSA-Z259.2.2-98 (R2004) : Self-Retracting Devices for Personal Fall-Arrest Systems.
4. CAN/CSA-Z259.2.3-99 (R2004) : Descent Control Devices.
5. CAN/CSA-Z259.10-06 : Full Body Harnesses.
6. CAN/CSA-Z259.11-05 : Energy Absorbers and Lanyards.
7. CAN/CSA-Z259.12-01 (R2006) : Connecting Components for Personal Fall Arrest Systems (PFAS).
8. CAN/CSA-Z259.14-01 (R2007) : Fall Restrict Equipment for Wood Pole Climbing.
(4) Before any use of a fall arrest system or a safety net by a worker at a project, the worker's employer shall develop written procedures for rescuing the worker after his or her fall has been arrested.
[O. Reg. 145/00, s. 12; 85/04, s. 5; 443/09, s. 1; 345/15, s. 5]
138. (1) An employer shall ensure that a worker successfully completes a training program that meets the requirements set out in subsection (2) at the following times:
1. Before the worker uses a suspended work platform system or boatswain’s chair for the first time.
2. As often as is necessary, but at least every three years, after the worker uses a suspended work platform system or boatswain’s chair for the first time.
(2) The training program referred to in subsection (1) shall,
(a) consist of adequate oral and written instruction for using a suspended work platform system or boatswain’s chair, including instruction on,
(i) the regulations under the Act that apply to the work,
(ii) fall hazards related to the use of the suspended work platform system or boatswain’s chair,
(iii) selecting, putting on, using and inspecting personal protective equipment, and its components, that the worker is required to wear,
(iv) identifying and using fixed supports for a suspended work platform system or boatswain’s chair and for the worker’s fall arrest system,
(v) the components, functions and limitations of a suspended work platform system or boatswain’s chair, tiebacks and operational controls,
(vi) reading and using roof plans and work plans,
(vii) the load limitations of the suspended work platform system or boatswain’s chair, and
(viii) elements of emergency rescue from a suspended work platform system or boatswain’s chair; and
(b) require the worker to demonstrate proficiency in,
(i) selecting, putting on, using and inspecting the personal protective equipment the worker is required to use,
(ii) rigging procedures and tying adequate knots,
(iii) locating fixed supports that are identified in a roof plan,
(iv) safely operating the suspended work platform system or boatswain’s chair, and
(v) operating the controls of the suspended work platform system or boatswain’s chair in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions.
(3) The employer shall ensure that the person who provides the training program referred to in subsection (1) prepares and signs a written record for every worker who successfully completes the program and shall provide such written proof to the worker.
(4) A worker shall have the written proof described in subsection (3) readily available at a project.
[O. Reg. 242/16, s. 11]
141.5 (1) Before a suspended work platform system or boatswain’s chair is put into service for the first time on a project, the employer shall ensure that a competent person,
(a) prepares written procedures for the rescue of workers from a suspended work platform system or boatswain’s chair in an emergency;
(b) conducts a risk assessment of the work to be undertaken to identify hazards that may arise from use of the suspended work platform system or boatswain’s chair with reference to the nature of the workplace, the type of work and the conditions of work; and
(c) prepares a written, site-specific work plan that complies with subsection (2) and, if it is a work plan respecting a suspended work platform system, also complies with subsection (3).
(2) A site-specific work plan for a suspended work platform system or boatswain’s chair shall include, at a minimum,
(a) measures and procedures to protect the health and safety of workers using the suspended work platform system or boatswain’s chair;
(b) procedures to install, move and dismantle the suspended work platform system or boatswain’s chair;
(c) an assessment as to whether the suspended work platform system or boatswain’s chair can be installed according to a generic installation drawing or whether it must be installed according to a site-specific installation drawing;
(d) the rated platform capacity of the suspended work platform, suspended work platform module or boatswain’s chair;
(e) the weight of all materials, tools and equipment allowed to be on the suspended work platform or boatswain’s chair;
(f) how all suspension lines and lifelines are to be attached to the fixed supports shown in any roof plan required under section 141.2;
(g) an identification of the hazards related to material hoisting, cutting, grinding and sandblasting associated with the work;
(h) an identification of all electrical hazards, including minimum distances when approaching electrical conductors;
(i) protection for the public and workers who may be below the suspended work platform or boatswain’s chair;
(j) overhead protection for workers on a suspended work platform or boatswain’s chair from any work being conducted above the suspended work platform or boatswain’s chair;
(k) measures to be taken to protect workers using a suspended work platform system or boatswain’s chair from weather and other conditions that may endanger them;
(l) a copy of the written procedures for the emergency rescue of workers from a suspended work platform or boatswain’s chair in an emergency established under clause (1) (a);
(m) the maximum number of workers allowed on a suspended work platform, suspended work platform module or boatswain’s chair;
(n) information about methods of fall protection, including installation, that may be used for the protection of workers using a suspended work platform or boatswain’s chair; and
(o) information about ready access to a two-way communication system, such as radio, telephone or other similar means, to be provided to a worker using a suspended work platform system or boatswain’s chair.
(3) In addition to the elements described in subsection (2), a site-specific plan for a suspended work platform system shall include, at a minimum,
(a) how the work platform is to be arranged in any location at which the platform is to be used on the project;
(b) a weight distribution plan to ensure loading across the work platform or suspended work platform module surface does not exceed the design capacity;
(c) the maximum amount or weight of debris, grit and other materials allowed to accumulate on the suspended work platform, and their permissible locations on the work platform; and
(d) an assessment as to whether a device may be used to transfer material to and from the work platform and, if it may, directions on how it is to be used.
(4) The employer shall keep at the project, and make available to an inspector on request, the site-specific work plan.
(5) The employer shall,
(a) ensure that the site-specific work plan is implemented at the project; and
(b) before a worker begins installing or using a suspended work platform system or boatswain’s chair at the project, provide the worker with a copy of the site-specific work plan and review it with the worker.
[O. Reg. 242/16, s. 11]
153. (1) No worker shall use as a workplace a platform, bucket, basket, load, hook, sling or similar device that is capable of moving and is supported by a cable attached to the boom of a crane or similar hoisting device, except in accordance with this section.
(2) A crane may be used to raise, support or lower a worker only if,
(a) conventional access equipment cannot be used;
(b) the platform that the worker is on,
(i) is designed by a professional engineer in accordance with good engineering practice,
(ii) is constructed in accordance with the design drawings,
(iii) is equipped with more than one means of suspension or support,
(iv) is equipped with anchor points for the attachment of the worker's fall arrest systems,
(v) is equipped with a guardrail in accordance with section 26.3,
(vi) is suspended from, or supported by, a direct attachment to the boom of the crane,
(vii) is designed, constructed or maintained so that the failure of one means of support or suspension will not cause the collapse of all or part of the platform, and
(viii) has its maximum rated load capacity legibly and permanently marked in a conspicuous place on it; and
(c) the crane,
(i) is equipped with fail-safe mechanisms that will prevent the boom and the suspended platform from free falling in the event of a power source or system failure or the inadvertent release of any operating controls,
(ii) is not used to hoist material while the platform is being used to support a worker,
(iii) is not loaded in excess of 25 per cent of its maximum rated load,
(iv) has a revised load rating chart prepared by a professional engineer in accordance with good engineering practice and affixed in a conspicuous place on the crane,
(v) has, on its hoist line, hooks equipped with self-closing safety catches at the point where the platform is suspended, and
(vi) is equipped with an automatic limit switch that prevents the platform and load from reaching beyond the highest permissible position specified by the crane manufacturer.
(3) Any modifications or repairs to the boom of the crane shall be made in accordance with the instructions of the crane manufacturer or a professional engineer.
(4) Every worker on the platform shall wear a full body harness connected independently to anchor points on the platform and used in conjunction with a lanyard fitted with a shock absorber.
(5) The design drawings of the platform shall,
(a) set out the size and specifications of all components of the platform, including the type and grade of materials used for it;
(b) state the maximum live load of the platform;
(c) specify the model and type of crane to be used in conjunction with the platform; and
(d) include a statement that, in the opinion of the professional engineer who designed the platform, the design meets the requirements of clauses (a), (b) and (c).
(e) Repealed. [O. Reg. 85/04, s. 16]
(6) Before the platform is used, a competent worker shall inspect it and verify in writing that it has been constructed in accordance with the design drawings.
(7) No person shall use the platform until the verification required under subsection (6) is given.
(8) Before the crane is first used to lift persons, and at least once every 12 months after the first test, a professional engineer shall ensure that the crane be subjected to non-destructive testing to ensure the structural integrity of the crane.
(9) A competent worker shall visually inspect the crane's structural elements and the rigging equipment for defects before each use of the crane.
(10) The employer shall ensure that an adequate means of communication between the worker on the platform and the crane operator is established, maintained and used.
(11) Before beginning any hoisting operation under this section, the constructor shall notify by telephone an inspector in the office of the Ministry of Labour nearest to the project.
(12) The employer shall ensure that every worker involved with the hoisting operation receives adequate instructions about the requirements, restrictions and hazards associated with the hoisting operation.
(13) The employer shall develop adequate emergency rescue procedures and communicate these in writing to all workers involved with the hoisting operation.
(14) The constructor shall keep all design drawings, test reports, written statements and certification documents required under this section with the crane at all times during the hoisting operation.
(15) On request, the constructor shall provide an inspector with copies of any document described in subsection (14).
[O. Reg. 631/94, s. 4; 527/00, s. 5; 85/04, s. 16; 242/16, s. 15]
Part IV TUNNELS, SHAFTS, CAISSONS and COFFERDAMS
264. (1) Before a project begins, an employer shall establish in writing emergency procedures for the rescue of underground workers.
(2) Copies of the rescue procedures signed by the employer and supervisor of the underground workers shall be posted in conspicuous places on the project.
(3) The emergency procedures shall be practised in preparation for an emergency and shall be followed in an emergency.
265. (1) At least four workers at a project or, if fewer than four workers work at the project, all workers shall be trained in and readily available to perform rescues of underground workers.
(2) Rescue workers shall be provided with suitable equipment to perform rescues.
(3) Rescue workers shall be trained by a competent person appointed by a Director.
(4) A Director who makes an appointment described in subsection (3) shall, in doing so, consider any recommendations of the representatives of labour and of management.
(5) Rescue workers shall be trained within thirty days before tunnelling operations begin and retrained at least every thirty days after the initial training.
(6) Before a project begins, the supervisor of the construction of a tunnel shall designate a rescue worker who shall inspect and test all rescue equipment every thirty days.
[O. Reg. 145/00, s. 34]
266. (1) This section applies if, on a project, there is a tunnel and shaft whose combined length exceeds forty-five metres.
(2) Every rescue worker shall be provided with a self-contained breathing apparatus that meets the requirements of subsection (5) and subsection (6), (7) or (8), as is appropriate to the length of the underground work place.
(3) A competent person referred to in subsection 265(3) shall train rescue workers in the proper operation of the self-contained breathing apparatus.
(4) The training required by subsection (3) shall be repeated at least every thirty days.
(5) The self-contained breathing apparatus shall have a full face mask.
(6) For use in an underground work place that is less than 100 metres long, the minimum rated duration of use for a self-contained breathing apparatus shall be one-half hour.
(7) For use in an underground work place that is 100 metres or more but less than 150 metres long, the minimum rated duration of use for a self-contained breathing apparatus shall be one hour.
(8) For use in an underground work place that is 150 metres or more long, the minimum rated duration of use for a self-contained breathing apparatus shall be one and one-half hours.
(9) All self-contained breathing apparatuses intended for rescue work on a project shall be the same model and made by the same manufacturer.
(10) All self-contained breathing apparatuses shall be kept in close proximity to the means of access to an underground work place and shall be readily available.
(11) A sufficient number, four as a minimum, of self-contained breathing apparatuses shall be available on the project to provide for all rescue work that may be required.
(12) A competent person shall inspect every self-contained breathing apparatus at least once a month or as often as is required by the manufacturer to ensure it is in proper condition.
267. Every worker who is in, or may be required to enter, a tunnel or shaft leading to it shall be provided with a self-rescue respirator for the worker's exclusive use which is suitable for protection against hazardous gases.
[O. Reg. 631/94, s. 10]
268. (1) A worker's self-rescue respirator shall be kept in the vicinity of the worker while he or she is in a tunnel or shaft.
(2) All workers on a tunnel project shall be instructed in the proper use, care, maintenance and limitations of the self-rescue respirator in accordance with the manufacturer's specifications.