Planning & Management

Safety Alert Type: 
Planning and Engineering
Location: 
Blue and Gold road, Nelson BC.
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2008-01-31
Company Name: 
Kalesnikoff Lumber Co. Ltd.
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

While plowing snow between 3.5 km and 4 km on Blue and Gold road, a grader operator witnessed two separate avalanches a short distance ahead of the grader. Both slides initiated in a cut block, 1 above the road and 1 below the road. The slides initiated on approximately a 60% slope and covered a combined area of about 1 hectare. The slides consisted of fresh storm snow sliding on a buried hoar frost layer and were considered a class 2 avalanche. The slides totaled a width of about 100m wide and ran for about 150 m. The average slab depth was 40 cm. The suspected cause of the slides was likely a combination of the above snow conditions and the vibration from the grader. A harvesting crew arrived on site a short time after the slide occurred and immediately reported the incident to the company harvesting supervisor. The harvesting supervisor visited the site and shut down operations in the area until conditions stabilized. Weekend weather was predicting more snowfall with increased avalanche activity. The gate at the bottom of the road was locked limiting further access to this site.

This is the first time that this type of event has occurred in this area during the duration of forestry activities in the area.

Learnings and Suggestions: 
  1. Professional avalanche risk assessments or other mitigative actions may need to be conducted prior to forestry operations in other areas with similar site conditions.
  2. If avalanche activity is noted in any area of operations, stop work and contact your supervisor for further direction.

 

For more information on this submitted alert: 

Kalesnikoff Lumber Co. Ltd. – Woodlands
Phone: (250) 399-4211

File attachments
2008-01-31 Avalanche Witnessed.pdf

Planning & Management

Safety Alert Type: 
Planning and Engineering
Location: 
Southern Interior
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2008-01-01
Company Name: 
MacLeod Forest Services Ltd.
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

Our Job Safety Analysis indicates that log hauling and road use are likely areas for incidents to occur. The results of any road incident are likely to be severe. Increased and focused harvesting in response to the pine beetle increases the potential for a serious road related accident. Most contractors have access to trained and equipped first aid attendants and ETV’s however if the accident traps a worker in the vehicle or if the vehicle is down a steep bank specialized rescuers and equipment may be required (Jaws of Life, rope rescue). While assisting several harvesting contractors in preparing their emergency evacuation plans we contacted BC Ambulance, local Fire Departments and other rescue services in various towns to find out how far up logging roads they could respond. We discovered there may be limitations on rescue agencies abilities to respond to resource road accidents. BC Ambulance may not go off main roads due to vehicle limitations and depending on the experience of attendants. Fire Departments may not be authorized to leave their designated protection area or may not be equipped with trucks capable of negotiating resource roads. Search and Rescue is not likely to be equipped for vehicle rescue.

Learnings and Suggestions: 

Pre-planning is important to ensure any potential rescue/evacuation is as efficient as possible. This pre-planning is best conducted by the prime contractor for a road system which is likely the Licensee(s). Prior to work commencing on a road system Licensees should contact the closest emergency services to coordinate a response plan. This planning process must include discussions about:

1. Areas to be worked, timing of projects and volume of traffic.

2. Key areas (narrow sections, sharp curves, steep side hills, historical problem sites)

3. Quality of the roads (grades, maintenance, road surface).

4. Responder limitations (jurisdiction, training, vehicle) and solutions.

5. Rendezvous points where manpower and equipment may be transferred to pickups.

Licensees should ensure that their emergency plan for any road related incident includes:

1. Immediately after notice of an accident is broadcast all traffic stops at the closest available pullout and stays stopped until given the all clear.

2. The closest radio equipped empty/up vehicles marshal at the rendezvous point (likely 0 km) to act as guides to rescue vehicles.

For more information on this submitted alert: 

Doug MacLeod 250-499-2785 Email: dmacleod@nethop.net

File attachments
2008-01-01 Planning for the Worst.pdf

Planning & Management

Safety Alert Type: 
Planning and Engineering
Location: 
Hope, B.C. American Creek Block AM111
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2007-11-08
Company Name: 
Infinity-Pacific Stewardship Group
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

At approximately 12:00pm a crew of two field workers stopped for lunch in a block in the American Creek area near Hope, B.C. While stopped they heard a growl and saw something moving in the bush nearby. A bear banger was shot into the air and the crew moved away from the area of encounter. At approximately 12:30pm a cougar was sighted at a distance of ~50 meters; it was growling and hissing at thecrew. Another bear banger was used to deter the cougar and the crew decided that it would be most appropriate to leave the block for the remainder of the day. It is unknown why the cougar acted aggressively towards the field crew, it may have been protecting a kill or its young, or it may have been hungry, curious, or territorial.

Learnings and Suggestions: 

It was reiterated to the field crew that they acted appropriately by leaving the area once the cougar had been sighted and a threat had been identified. It was decided that crews should exercise extra caution when working in this area, and that all workers should keep a look out for fresh cougar signs. A cougar awareness and information sheet was distributed to all employees so they are aware of what to do in case of another encounter. The supervisor of the block decided that no one should work alone in this area for the remainder of the block layout. Lastly, radio communication and check in systems were reviewed to ensure that all crews work in the safest conditions possible and can respond quickly to any future encounters.

For more information on this submitted alert: 

Chris Gruenwald; IPSG: 604-460-1390 ext.231

File attachments
2007-11-08 Cougar Sighted.pdf

2008-01-14 Damage to crew transport vehicle

Safety Alert Type: 
Log Sorting
Location: 
Ingram Creek
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2008-01-14
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

A crew truck was parked on the landing well out of the way of the loading operations when the crew started work in the morning. An incident occurred just before daybreak. It was snowing at the time. A logging truck contractor arrived on the landing, waiting to be loaded. The pick up was used during the time the trucker was sitting on the landing and re-parked in a different spot off to the side of the landing. The truck driver thought he should move back to allow the loader and truck currently being loaded a bit more room. While the logging truck contractor was backing up he did not see the pickup was in a blind spot. The jeep caught the front fender on the driver’s side of the parked pickup, damaging the vehicle.

Learnings and Suggestions: 

Continually check your mirrors to ensure nothing is behind you while backing up.
Backup lights aid visibility in early morning activities.

For more information on this submitted alert: 

 

BC Forest Safety Council

 

“Unsafe is Unacceptable”

 

File attachments
2008-01-14 Damage to crew transport vehicle.pdf

Mechanical Harvesting

Location: 
Coastal Dry Land Sort
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2008-04-15
Company Name: 
Alpine Backhoe Services Ltd.
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

Front end loader was taking first scoop of logs off a logging truck. The ‘D’ on the stake line that was holding the driver’s side truck stake upright, broke. The stake fell to the ground allowing some logs to fall off. Inspection of broken ‘D’ revealed a small crack.

Learnings and Suggestions: 
  • Follow O.H.S. Reg.26.66 (8) Stake and bunk assemblies must be inspected daily, and must not be used if they show signs of excessive wear.
  • Ensure M.V.I. thoroughly inspects stake and bunk assemblies.
  • This close call also emphasizes the importance of restraining the load before the cinches are removed.

 

For more information on this submitted alert: 

Neil McIver, Alpine Backhoe Services Ltd. 250-287-2220

File attachments
2008-04-15 Mechanical Failure.pdf

Mechanical Harvesting

Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2008-06-05
Company Name: 
Long Shot Holdings Ltd.
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

On May 9, 2008 a log loader was working very closely to a grapple yarder; the loader operator swung his loader around not realizing how close he was to the yarder. The counterweight of the log loader struck the carrier of the yarder.

The grapple yarder operator was cleaning out the yarder cold deck at this time. The chaser was standing in the cab door frame and was struck in the back by the door post and was thrown six (6) ft onto the ground.

INVESTIGATION: It was found that the log loader operator did not assess his surroundings when he was working near the grapple yarder. It was also found that the loader operator was working to close to the grapple yarder. The operator did not feel or hear anything at that time.

The grapple yarder operator informed the loader operator by radio once he was clear of the machine.

Under Long Shot Holdings Ltd Safe Work Procedures for operating a Log Loader it states under #3: “Ensure that your actions don’t create a hazard to you or others working around you. The back end of the machine shall be at least two (2) ft clear of all obstacles.”
The chaser and grapple yarder operator walked away uninjured. This incident could have been prevented and the end result could have been much worse than it was. We must remind ourselves of the dangers of working in the forest industry and remember that it only takes one action to change ones life forever.

Learnings and Suggestions: 

Loader operator will keep clear of all machinery by a minimum of two (2) feet. The operator will be retrained in the fulfillment of the intention of the safe work procedures. Complacency and familiarity can make a person to comfortable around equipment and co-workers. Everyone must be aware and alert at all times.

For more information on this submitted alert: 

Laura Olynyk
Safety Coordinator

File attachments
2008-06-05 Mechanical Harvester hits Grapple Yarder.pdf

Mechanical Harvesting

Location: 
Echo Lake, Campbell River
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2008-04-07
Company Name: 
Thibault Logging Ltd. /Critical Site Logging Inc.
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

Hand faller was working with the operator of a Volvo 210 Excavator falling tree along power lines. When they were in the process of falling a cedar the Volvo operator had to reach out further because of the swampy area. The tree was limb heavy, it twisted in the hold of the Volvo on the way down causing the Volvo track to sink slightly. The top of the tree struck the power line bending over the insulator.

Conditions: Ground condition was swampy.

Learnings and Suggestions: 

Soft swampy ground was found to be a contributing factor. In communication with BC Hydro and Worksafe it was recommended that the use of an arborist in future swampy areas where there is a risk of the machine track sinking or losing control be implemented in procedures. Workers to discuss any concerns regarding leaning trees with supervisor and call onsite arborist if necessary.

For more information on this submitted alert: 

Thibault Logging Ltd. /Critical Site Logging Inc.
Phone: (250) 542-8922

File attachments
2008-04-07 Tree Struck Power Line.pdf

Mechanical Harvesting

Location: 
Mission
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2008-03-01
Company Name: 
District of Mission Forestry
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

A forestry worker was walking in the landing to process wood when he entered the landing a little too soon and the excavator operator was not aware he was there. The excavator operator started to move and almost bumped or drove into the landing worker. As the landing worker jumped up and away from the excavator, he stumbled. There was no injury to the landing worker, although he could have either been run over, or sprained or fractured something by moving rapidly to a safe position.

Learnings and Suggestions: 

Complacency and familiarity can make you too comfortable around equipment and co-workers and could compromise your safety. Be aware and be alert at all times.

Sometimes it is difficult to see through the plexi-glass and cage to know if visual contact with the equipment operator has been adequately made. Do NOT enter worksite until you have the operator’s attention via the horn signal.

Signs will be made and posted at the landing, stating that the equipment operator must signal via the horn (or airhorn) before anyone can proceed into the active worksite.
SOP will be amended to further define how to ensure you have the operator’s attention (via horn).

File attachments
2008-03-01 Too Close to Excavator.pdf

Mechanical Harvesting

Location: 
Southern Interior
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2008-04-01
Company Name: 
Reitmeier Logging Ltd
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

An excavator operator was attempting to jump start a skidder with the excavator he was operating. The operator attached the jumper cables to the excavator and skidder batteries while the excavator was running, and then walked away from the skidder to allow the batteries to charge up before attempting to start the skidder.

As the operator was waiting for the batteries to charge up, both skidder batteries exploded. No one was injured from the explosion.

The operator reported the incident / close call to his supervisor. The supervisor then told the operator that the electrical system for the John Deere skidder was 12 volts, and the electrical system for the Hyundai excavator was 24 volts – a combination that does not match if attempting to jump start the skidder.

The operator thought that because the two 12 volt batteries in the skidder were connected in series (the batteries were in fact connected in parallel), the skidder could be jumped with 24 volts.

Learnings and Suggestions: 

Batteries of different voltages should never be used for the purpose of jump starting, especially using batteries of higher voltages to jump start vehicles / equipment / machinery outfitted with batteries / electrical systems of lower voltages (ie: using 24 volt batteries to jump vehicles / equipment / machinery outfitted with 12 volt batteries / electrical systems)

Review Safe Work Practice – Batteries with all employees. The Safe Work Practice should cover battery safety, charging, changing, and jump starting topics.

File attachments
2008-04-01 Batteries Explode.pdf

Mechanical Harvesting

Location: 
Errington
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2008-05-15
Company Name: 
Copcan Contracting Ltd.
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

A skidder operator was turning left, on an 18% slope, when his load of logs shifted as the left rear tire of the skidder went on an 8” high by 14” wide stump. The combination of weight shifting and increased skidder angle to approximately 25% (left rear wheel rising on to the stump) caused the skidder to roll. The skidder operator had found himself confined for room in the landing approach. A high stump (approximately 32’ high) forced the operator to swing turn wide to the left on route down the hill, to enable himself piling and turning space for the logs.

No injuries were sustained by the operator and there was no damage to the Skidder. Operator was wearing his seatbelt at the time of the incident.

Learnings and Suggestions: 
  • Ensure that the landing is clear so Skidder approach is straight up and down the slope.
  • Stumps should be cut 12” or as low as possible so the turn does not bind up on high stumps – if they are not operator should call for bucker to recut stump.
  • Steep slope procedure needs to be developed for each site.
  • If an operator has any concerns he needs to communicate these to his supervisor.

 

For more information on this submitted alert: 

Copcan Contracting Ltd.
(250) 754-7260

File attachments
2008-05-15 Mechanical Harvester Rolled.pdf
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