Snowshoes can be a tripping hazard - especially when snow levels are low

Safety Alert Type: 
Workers
Location: 
Northern Interior
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2015-04-10
Company Name: 
Canfor
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

Hazard:

  • Using snowshoes at a particular time of year when snow coverage is sparse (i.e., increased exposure to tripping hazards).
  • Substantial amount of blowdown in the block.
  • Minimal protection offered by wearing thin/lightweight pants.
  • Personal First Aid Kits not available in the sterile condition required.

Incident Summary:

  • The crew debated wearing snowshoes during the safety tailgate meeting due to the partial snow levels.
  • The back of the snowshoe got caught on a branch as the employee stepped over a log while laying out a cutblock.
  • The employee fell forward and landed on a broken branch stub, causing a puncture wound just above their knee that required a tetanus shot and 4 stiches to treat.

 

Learnings and Suggestions: 

Preventative Actions:

  • Looking for an alternate snowshoe design that will limit the opportunity for sticks/branches to get caught up in them (i.e., web less).

Communicate to field crews the following:

  1. The importance of maintaining 3pts of contact at all times when climbing over obstacles.
  2. Encourage them to consider wearing more durable clothing as an additional form of PPE (i.e., Carhartt pants).
  3. The importance of storing First Aid Kits and providing them with weather proof bag/container to do so.
  4. The importance of communicating incidents as per the Abnormality Escalation Process timelines.

 

For more information on this submitted alert: 

Tyson von den Steinen, RPF - Canadian Forest Products Ltd.

Tyson.vondenSteinen@canfor.com

File attachments
Safety_Alert_Canfor-Snowshoes-Apr_10-15.pdf
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