Radio channels: Is yours the right one?

Safety Alert Type: 
Resource Roads
Location: 
near Houston, BC
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2016-09-08
Company Name: 
Tom Neufeld Trucking Ltd.
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

An employee of Tom Neufeld Trucking Ltd. was driving home after work; he switched to channel 18 on the radio.

The employee drove for approximately 10-15 minutes and met a few vehicles he thought were failing to call their kilometres. At that time he noticed that he was on the wrong bank of channels; he should have been on channel RR18 instead of channel 18.

Learnings and Suggestions: 

When changing channels always ensure you are on the correct bank.

For additional information about radio channels for resource roads, view the BC Forest Safety Council’s Resource Road Radio Channels Bulletin: http://www.bcforestsafe.org/node/2878


For more information on resource road radio channel use contact: Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development District Engineer within your area via Service BC 1-800-663-7867 or the BC Forest Safety Council’s Transportation Safety Program 1-877-741-1060.

File attachments
Safety_Alert_Tom_Neufeld_Trucking-radio_channels-Sept_8-2016.pdf

Excavator bucket falls off during loading of pick-up truck

Safety Alert Type: 
Heavy Equipment
Location: 
Campbell River, BC
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2017-08-21
Company Name: 
BC Timber Sales
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

A bucket fell off the boom of an excavator while loading chains into the back of a pick-up truck.

After unloading bridges the excavator operator attached a bucket with a quick change hitch to the boom and proceeded to lift the chains into the truck. While uncurling the bucket over the truck it fell off the boom damaging the tailgate and jockey box of the pickup truck.

All workers were in the clear a safe distance from the excavator. No injuries occurred.

Learnings and Suggestions: 
  • When working around mobile equipment maintain a safe distance from the activity. Confirm with the equipment operator where the designated safe area is located prior to commencing the activity.
  • Excavator operators need to ensure buckets are secure by following appropriate safe work procedures. As a recommended best practice ask the operator to ensure that the bucket is fully secure before use around workers, vehicles, and other equipment.

 

For more information on this submitted alert: 

Mike Gelz RFT, BC Timber Sales (250) 286-9353

File attachments
Safety_Alert_Excavator Bucket Damages Vehicle-BCTS-August_21-2017.pdf

Log hauling can present many hazards - including debris in loads

Safety Alert Type: 
Log Hauling
Location: 
British Columbia; New Zealand
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2017-09-06
Company Name: 
BC Forest Safety Council; New Zealand Forest Owners Association
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

There have been reported incidents involving rocks or other debris in loads of logs and wedged between tires. Rocks have fallen out of a load of logs, have been ejected from between the truck or trailer tires, or “kicked-up” by a passing truck.

Most recently, a rock the size of a tennis ball hit the roof of a truck, causing significant damage and narrowly avoiding impacting the windshield - which could have been catastrophic.

This hazard was the subject of the March 2013 Alert of The Month "Preventing Debris in Loads of Logs". Here is the link: http://www.bcforestsafe.org/aom_mar2013_debris


Also, From New Zealand - a series of alerts related to log loading and hauling:

 

Ride out the rollover

Safety Alert Type: 
Road Building/Deactivation
Location: 
near Mackenzie, BC
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2017-07-20
Company Name: 
KDL Group
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

A grader operator was travelling to a new pit. He cleared the belly dump and went to continue, but the grader was in too high of a gear and so it stalled and started rolling backwards immediately.

The operator stepped on the brake, but no response. He tried to steer into the bank but it would not turn. He looked behind, undid his seatbelt and stood up to look at the side of the road and embankment.

As the back wheels were getting close to the edge, he decided to jump clear of the machine instead of staying in the cab.

The operator was not hit by the machine but sustained serious injuries from landing on the road. The injuries could have been avoided through proper training and following Standard Operating Procedures.

Learnings and Suggestions: 

Prior to operating equipment -

  • Inspect the guarding and Rollover Protective Structure (ROPS) for structural soundness
  • Ensure the escape hatch is in good working condition
  • Stow any loose items in the cab

During operation –

  • Gear down as speed decreases when travelling uphill
  • Know how to apply the brakes in a stall situation
  • Keep seatbelt on
  • Keep the cab door closed
  • Always ride out any rollover

 

For more information on this submitted alert: 

Mark Pride, KDL Group (250) 997-3333

File attachments
Safety_Alert-KDL Group-Rollovers-July_20-2017.pdf

WorkSafeBC Bulletin: FAQ's about wildfire smoke

Safety Alert Type: 
Weather
Location: 
British Columbia
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2017-07-31
Company Name: 
WorkSafeBC
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

This publication from WorkSafeBC provides responses to frequently asked questions (FAQs) from employers during the wildfire season.

The information is intended to help employers understand the hazards associated with exposure to wildfire smoke, and to outline some measures you can implement to minimize worker exposures.

This general information is not intended to address the specific hazards and exposures faced by wildfire fighters. It is intended for other workplace environments where workers may be exposed to wildfire smoke.

Learnings and Suggestions: 

See the attached document for full details or read it online: http://www.worksafebcmedia.com/enews/ppd/170728/170728.html

File attachments
WorkSafeBC_Bulletin-wildfire-smoke-faq-July_2017.pdf

Roll over incident shows how quickly things can go wrong

Safety Alert Type: 
Resource Roads
Location: 
Northern Interior
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2017-06-26
Company Name: 
CANFOR
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

A loaded gravel truck met an empty pickup on a logging road in dusty conditions with poor visibility. The gravel truck had just passed a grader, and was travelling in the middle of the road to avoid the windrow that the grader had just created.

The pickup truck swerved to avoid a collision and ended up rolling over into the ditch. The pickup sustained major damage and the driver of the pickup ended up breaking his thumb, while the passenger suffered a sore back.

Neither vehicle involved in the incident heard the other call their location in an area known to have very poor radio transmission.

Learnings and Suggestions: 

Potential Hazards

  • Poor visibility due to dusty dry conditions.
  • Poor radio transmission (i.e., “blind spot”). It is suspected that Resource Road channels have caused transmission to become even less clear in this area.
  • A windrow of gravel in the center of the road.
  • No signage warning traffic the presence of heavy machinery operating nearby.
  • Complacency during shift change as drivers do not expect other traffic during the end of the day when road is not as busy with active hauling.

Preventative Actions

  • Vehicles must follow the “Rules of the Road” and clear traffic as required to allow unimpeded travel. In certain conditions such as poor visibility, narrow roads, dusty conditions this may require stopping in a pullout and waiting.
  • Vehicles must call all required KMs as per the radio calling procedures, including all “MUST CALL” signs in areas that have limited transmission.
  • Always post required signage if temporarily blocking or working on the road (e.g., “Grader Working”).
  • Only pass a grader or slower vehicles when there is a clear line of sight and it’s safe to do so.

 

For more information on this submitted alert: 

Tyson von den Steinen, Canadian Forest Products Ltd. (250) 962-3229 Tyson.vondenSteinen@canfor.com

 

File attachments
Safety_Alert-Canfor-RolloverOnResourceRoad_June_21-2017.pdf

Downed Power Lines: BC Hydro urges public safety, avoidance

Safety Alert Type: 
Hazardous Materials
Location: 
Anywhere energized power lines may be downed, in contact with objects / ground
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2017-07-13
Company Name: 
BC Hydro
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

In the past few months BC Hydro workers have come across several situations where caution tape had been applied either directly to downed power lines or to poles or trees that were in contact with power lines.

They also discovered numerous instances where members of the public, in an effort to clear debris from a road, had cut trees that were in contact with power lines. In at least one of those instances the person suffered an electrical contact and was rushed to hospital.

It is important to remember that power lines often remain energized while on or near the ground and that anything touching a power line can provide a path for electricity. First responders and members of the public should maintain a distance of 10 metres from any downed line and anything that is in contact with a power line.

Forestry and Tree Trimming Incidents – April to May 2017

  1. A logging truck snagged a telephone line that was crossing the street and broke the pole. The BC Hydro 25kV line dropped from the top of the pole onto the truck. The line remained energized as the load and tires on the truck caught fire (see photo in attached pdf). Passers-by attempted to extinguish the fire using portable extinguishers, unaware that the 25kV line was energized on top of the truck.
  2. A work crew was using an excavator to remove a large tree near a power line when they lost control of the tree causing it to fall through the line. The work crew continued to clean up the tree before BC Hydro crews arrived on scene.
  3. A member of the public felled a tree onto a 25kV line and then tried to cut the tree. He received an electrical contact and was transported to medical aid.
  4. A self-loading logging truck was cleaning up a load of logs from the side of the road when the picker contacted the telephone line. The movement shook the BC Hydro 25kV line off of the cross-arm and the line sagged and touched a tree.

 

Learnings and Suggestions: 

 

 Key Messages from BC Hydro

  • Never approach a power line. Always assume that it is energized. Never touch anything that is in contact with a power line and always assume that it is energized too.
  • Look up and identify overhead hazards. Know your distances and plan your work to allow for inadvertent movement.
  • Follow safe excavation practices. “Call before you dig” by contacting BC One Call at 1-800-474-6886.

Looking for Training? BC Hydro provides electrical safety awareness training for trades workers, first responders, and members of the public who may have interaction with their facilities. The training is provided free of charge, and it is available both online and in person. Visit www.bchydro.com/safetytraining

For more information on this submitted alert: 

Marc Spencer, Public Safety, BC Hydro marc.spencer@bchydro.com

 

File attachments
Hazard_Alert-BC_Hydro-Downed_Power_Lines-July_13-2017.pdf

Tree planting in blowdown leaves worker in stitches

Safety Alert Type: 
Silviculture
Location: 
Interior region of BC
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2017-05-23
Company Name: 
CANFOR
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

A tree planter was attempting to hit their target density by planting a tree in a high blowdown area. The tree planter misjudged their footing and slipped despite discussing the dangers of walking in slash during the morning tailgate meeting.

The tree planter slipped from a log onto another and punctured the posterior side of their thigh; the wound was approximately 2cm wide x 1 cm deep and required stitches to close.

Potential Hazards - Elevated risk due to the following factors:

  • Working in an isolated area far from the nearest hospital
  • Walking in high blowdown area with logs & slash that were wet
  • Planter wasn’t aware of the injury until later in the day during a break back at the pickup truck.

 

Learnings and Suggestions: 

Preventative Actions - Reviewed alternate planting techniques with the planting crews, such as:

  • Go around fallen logs & slash, rather than over
  • Take advantage of planting minimums by planting right up to obstacles and around them
  • Never jump off blowdown; climb off instead while always maintaining 3-point contact
  • Avoid high slash areas, especially in wet and rainy conditions
  • Take lighter “bag-ups” in high slash areas to reduce the weight being carried that would impact balance
  • Always assess ground & footwear before starting work for the day; caulked boots must be worn in wet and/or slashy conditions.

 

For more information on this submitted alert: 

Tyson von den Steinen, Canadian Forest Products Ltd. (250) 962-3229 Tyson.vondenSteinen@canfor.com

 

File attachments
Safety_Alert-Canfor-Tree_Plating_in_Blowdown-May_23-2017.pdf

Lightning strikes, risk of fire threaten field workers

Safety Alert Type: 
Weather
Location: 
Interior region of BC
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2017-07-09
Company Name: 
CANFOR
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

A storm developed at the end of the day while workers were walking out of the block. The storm came up quickly and included high winds, rain, hail, thunder and lightning.

The crew was walking out in the open on a built road without any standing timber around them.

Potential Hazards:

  • Risk of being struck by lightning when exposed or working in the open
  • Being trapped without an evacuation plan when lightning strikes ignite a wildfire.

 

Learnings and Suggestions: 

Monitor the weather and make suitable plans when lightning is forecast, which should include evacuation and identified shelter locations. Suspend activities at first sign of thunder & allow sufficient time to get to shelter.

Safe shelters include:

  • Pickup truck with windows fully up
  • Under mature forest canopy with uniform tree heights - or if necessary, low ground (i.e., ditches or under clumps of bushes).

Wait a minimum 30 minutes from the last lightning strike or thunder clap before resuming work if required to work in the open. When thunder is heard, AVOID solitary trees, water, open fields, small rain/sun shelters/gazebos, and using the telephone or touching appliances. (Portable radios & cell phones are safe to use.)

For more information on this submitted alert: 

Tyson von den Steinen, Canadian Forest Products Ltd. (250) 962-3229 Tyson.vondenSteinen@canfor.com

 

File attachments
Safety_Alert-Canfor-Lightning risk-July_2017.pdf

Roadside harvesting work creates numerous hazards

Safety Alert Type: 
Booming and Towing
Location: 
Northern Interior region
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2017-06-30
Company Name: 
CANFOR
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

There have been multiple incidents recently reported involving equipment working along mainline roads with inadequate signage and/or radio communication.

Drivers have been unable to contact the feller buncher operator because they are only monitoring the contractor’s private radio channel. These drivers on mainline roads not aware that falling activities are taking place.

Learnings and Suggestions: 

Potential Hazards

  • Falling timber and/or logging debris landing adjacent or directly on the road surface.
  • Passing vehicles driving too close to heavy machinery operating nearby.
  • Inadequate communication when vehicles can’t alert machine operators that they are approaching and require access.
  • Surprised or distracted drivers due to unexpected machinery or debris, which could result in a more serious incident.

Preventative Actions

As per WSBC Regulation sec 26.14.3 effective traffic control must be in place whenever vehicles on a road in a forestry operation are required to drive through a hazard area or through a safe work area.

  • “Effective traffic control” will require either signage, radio communication, flag person, or even physical barriers if necessary.

All heavy equipment must be monitoring the road channel at all times when working alongside active roads, which includes RR channels when working beside mainline roads.

Consider adjusting falling pattern to fall areas along roadsides in sequence during low traffic times and when supervisor, or designate, is available to direct traffic.

For more information on this submitted alert: 

Tyson von den Steinen, Canadian Forest Products Ltd. (250) 962-3229 Tyson.vondenSteinen@canfor.com

 

File attachments
Safety_Alert-Canfor-Roadside Harvesting Hazards-June 30-2017.pdf
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