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Machine Tips Over During Beaver Dam Removal

Safety Alert Type: 
Heavy Equipment
Location: 
BC Interior region
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2016-11-07
Company Name: 
CANFOR
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

An excavator operator was slowly dismantling a beaver dam by periodically halting work to allow water to flow at a rate that would not exceed the culvert flow capacity. At some point the road surface underneath the downhill track became too saturated with water and failed, causing the machine to slide down and tip over into the water.

Luckily the operator was able to exit the machine in time, however, the machine sustained significant damage.

Learnings and Suggestions: 

Potential Hazards

Elevated risk due to the following factors:

  • Working alone near water under cold weather conditions
  • Working on unstable ground saturated with water
  • Working behind a large volume of stored water energy.

Preventative Actions

Developed “Working on, near, or above water” safe work procedures that includes the following:

  • A hazard assessment must be conducted ahead of time to ensure roads are drained in advance and don’t become saturated with water while equipment is on it
  • Any worker working on, near, or above water that poses a risk of drowning must wear a personal flotation device
  • Under no circumstance are workers to work on, near, or above water that poses a risk of drowning while considered alone.

 

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-Beaver Dam-November 7-2016.pdf

Pressure Washer Incident

Safety Alert Type: 
Hand and Power Tools
Location: 
Vanderhoof, BC
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2017-04-27
Company Name: 
Walter Neufeld Contracting Ltd.
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

While a worker was using a hot water pressure washer, a co-worker needed a bucket of hot water.

The person using the pressure washer went to remove the pressure nozzle to fill the bucket and inadvertently triggered the wand, sending pressurized hot water out of the nozzle.

He was immediately taken to the hospital for assessment and treatment. The worker had a small cut near his ring finger.

Learnings and Suggestions: 

High pressure washing equipment can present a variety of hazards to workers. Understanding the hazards is the first step in reducing workers’ exposure. These hazards include:

  • WATER JETS - exposure to the high pressure water jet has the greatest potential to cause serious injury. The water jet can travel at speeds up to 3,300km per hour, and can slice through solid materials or damage any part of the human body. Even injuries that appear to be relatively minor can be fatal, as microorganisms can be injected into the body through the injury site along with air, water and debris.
  • HIGH VELOCITY IMPACT - Debris propelled by waterjets can injure eyes, skin, and body parts upon impact.
  • CHEMICAL EXPOSURE - Contact with hazardous chemicals is a risk while pressure washing.
  • MUSCULOSKELETAL INJURY - Workers are often required to work in awkward positions, lift heavy tools or materials and work with high reaction force. Workplace conditions are often wet, and increased slip hazards present themselves.

 

For more information on this submitted alert: 

Valerie Dettwiler, Griffon Safety Solutions Ltd. (250) 567-7823

File attachments
Hazard_Alert_Pressure_Washer_Incident_April_27-2017.pdf

Risks with changing Resource Road Radio Frequency signs

Safety Alert Type: 
Resource Roads
Location: 
British Columbia
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2017-04-24
Company Name: 
BC Forest Safety Council
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

Many resource roads have now been assigned standard resource road (RR) radio frequencies and signage will be in place to notify road users if these RR channels are in use.

Prior to starting work on these roads, make sure all vehicles involved have the correct channels installed. The RR channels are available to all mobile radio users, and can be obtained through commercial radio shops - provided the road users have a radio licence with the RR Appendix. These licences are issued by Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada (ISED).

Learnings and Suggestions: 

Avoid changing the radio frequencies already assigned to a resource road. Changing the frequency from the assigned RR channel can lead to confusion and the potential for vehicles on the road to be on 2 different channels.

If there is a reason why the radio frequency must be changed (example - too much radio traffic on the assigned frequency), here is the link to the procedure to get the channel changed:

http://www2.gov.bc.ca/assets/gov/farming-natural-resources-and-industry/natural-resource-use/resource-roads/channelassignmentchgeproceduredec7-2015draft.pdf

For more information on this submitted alert: 

For more information regarding the RR channels or communication protocols contact:

1) A MFLNRO District Engineer within your area via Service BC 1-800-663-7867 or

2) The BC Forest Safety Council’s Transportation Safety Program 1-877-741-1060.

File attachments
Safety_Alert-Resource_Road_Radio_Frequency_Change-Apr_24-2017.pdf

The importance of keeping your rig clean: Log truck inspection reveals bunk mount failures “hidden” under road grime

Safety Alert Type: 
Log Hauling
Location: 
Campbell River, BC
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2017-04-08
Company Name: 
Fearless Contracting Ltd.
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

Fearless Contracting self-load truck was dispatched to a motor vehicle accident involving a log truck from another company which had lost its load.

While recovering the load, the driver noted that the cause of the accident seemed to be a weld failure on the bunk mount pad and reported this to his supervisor.

Mechanics were instructed to thoroughly inspect all trucks and in the process found one with a cracked weld developing on the mounting bracket.

Learnings and Suggestions: 
  • Thorough daily inspections by drivers supported by mechanical inspections are critical to ensure safe operation of a log truck
  • Regular washing is essential to reveal potential failures.

 

For more information on this submitted alert: 

Ken Fear, Fearless Contracting Ltd. (250) 286-6630

File attachments
Safety_Alert_Fearless_Contracting_Ltd-April_8-2017.pdf

9-1-1: What you need to know when working in remote locations

Safety Alert Type: 
Worksites
Location: 
Remote camps that rely on satellite phones or VOIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) for outside communication
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2017-04-11
Company Name: 
Capacity Forest Management Ltd.
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

When reviewing our ERP we found that calling 9-1-1 may not be as easy in a remote camp as it is when you are calling from a land line in town.

We contacted the 9-1-1 service directly and were told:

“We strongly recommend that you reach out to your satellite and internet phone providers to confirm their process for handling emergency calls.”

And

“The process for handling these types of calls can differ between companies with most using third party call centres as the first point of contact instead of having calls go directly through to local emergency services.”

Learnings and Suggestions: 
  • Consider contacting BC Emergency Health Services (BCEHS), the organization responsible for dispatching ambulances throughout the province of BC, to learn what information they can share regarding injured workers in remote areas and how to transfer them to local hospitals. You can reach BCEHS toll free at 1-888-875-3256 or via email: pcqo@phsa.ca

 

For more information on this submitted alert: 

Gary Gallinger, RPF, Operations Planner - Capacity Forest Management Ltd. (250) 287-2120 Ext. 310 email:garygallinger@capfor.ca

 

File attachments
Safety_Alert_911_Service_in_Remote_Locations-Capfor-April_11-2017.pdf

Grizzly Bear Attack

Safety Alert Type: 
Wildlife encounter
Location: 
Draney Inlet (Central Coast) about 100 km north of Port Hardy
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2017-03-22
Company Name: 
Capacity Forest Management Ltd.
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

A worker was engineering for a helicopter harvesting cutblock when a grizzly bear attacked him.

Another worker was nearby and came to his aid, using bear spray to deter the bear. The worker was later airlifted to hospital to have his injuries treated.

Learnings and Suggestions: 
  • All field personnel should carry bear spray
  • Personnel must check the integrity and expiry of their bear spray
  • Send seasonal alerts for bear activity eg. when hibernation ends; during berry season
  • For helicopter development, map out the most accessible evacuation route.

 

For more information on this submitted alert: 

Justin Lukey, Operations Manager - Capacity Forest Management Ltd. (250) 287-2120

File attachments
Safety_Alert_Grizzly_Bear_Attack-Capfor-March_22-2017.pdf

Silviculture worker loses part of ear to skin cancer

Safety Alert Type: 
Workers
Location: 
BC Interior Region
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2017-04-09
Company Name: 
BC Safe Forestry Program (courtesy of Jordan Tesluk)
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

A silviculture worker was diagnosed with skin cancer, and part of his ear was removed.

Silviculture workers, including tree planters, spend long periods of time outside in the sun at the hottest time of year. Prolonged UV Exposure is recognized as causal to skin cancer.

Workers should know there are different types of skin cancer, including Basal Skin Cancer and potentially fatal Squamous Cell Skin Cancer that are most frequently found on sun exposed skin such as face, neck, and hands. Malignant Melanoma is less common than other skin cancers, but growing in frequency, more dangerous, and potentially fatal unless detected and treated at an early stage.

People can have different levels of vulnerability to skin cancers, based on their skin tone, family history, and the state of their immune system.

(See attached pdf for a personal story on the increased risk of skin cancer for silvicultural workers.)

Learnings and Suggestions: 
  • Employers should educate workers about skin cancer, and the factors that can increase personal risk
  • Workers should cover skin with high SPF sunscreen, wide brimmed hats, and clothing with a high SPF
  • Working with no shirt on for long periods should be strongly discouraged
  • Workers with unusual lumps of growths should immediately consult a physician
  • Extra care should be taken during summer days of peak exposure, including days of light overcast
  • Workers should be encouraged to check their skin frequently and ask for help in checking hard to see areas such as back and neck.

 

For more information on this submitted alert: 

Canadian Dermatology Association web page on sun safety:

http://www.dermatology.ca/programs-resources/resources/sun-safety/

 

File attachments
Safety_Alert-Skin_Cancer-Apr-9-2017.pdf

Combatting fatigue on the log haul

Safety Alert Type: 
Log Hauling
Location: 
Princeton, BC
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2017-03-27
Company Name: 
Weyerhaeuser Company Ltd.
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

Log hauling can be very demanding on drivers given:

  • The destination of wood and corresponding cycle times
  • Adverse road and weather conditions
  • Shift schedules to match favorable hauling conditions
  • Repairs and maintenance
  • Balancing lifestyle
  • The financial reward for time in the saddle.

However the consequences for an incident can be both costly and irreplaceable.

Learnings and Suggestions: 

With this in mind the Princeton Contractor Safety Committee is implementing 5 steps to combat fatigue:

  1. Make it very clear that exceeding the Hours of Service or manipulating log books is unacceptable.
  2. Clearly articulating that on-duty time includes repairs and maintenance done by drivers. Although larger fleet owners have mechanics in place, those operators that have drivers conduct their own maintenance/repairs must appreciate the hours that are attributable to repairs and maintenance. Having a well maintained vehicle is equally important as having a driver that is fit for duty.
  3. Openly engaging drivers in discussions on cycle options. Contractors to review options with haulers so that drivers are not pushing the limits on hours each and every day by proactively switching the haul destinations to allow the opportunity for drivers to achieve <10 hours of driving.
  4. Encouraging open discussions on fatigue with Supervisors so that options can be reviewed when the symptoms of fatigue are evident or drivers are pushing the limits. Options may include but are not limited to:
  • Shutting the haul down for an appropriate amount of time
  • Limiting the trips/hours in a day
  • Having a shortened week, longer weekend
  • Drivers taking the time to rest during off-duty hours. When changing your plans whether it be for fatigue or any other upset condition please advise your supervisor so that everyone has peace of mind and knows that you are safe and sound.

         5.The Princeton Safety Committee will be sponsoring Fatigue and Distracted Driving workshops on May 4, 2017 for all drivers.

For more information on this submitted alert: 

Norman Druck, RPF Operations Superintendent Weyerhaeuser Company Ltd. (250) 295-4266

File attachments
Safety_Alert-LogTruckDriverFatigue-Weyerhaeuser-March_2017.pdf

Warning Labels on Prescription Meds

Safety Alert Type: 
Workers
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2017-01-18
Company Name: 
INTERFOR
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

Some forestry workers who work in safety sensitive environments do not acknowledge or heed the warning labels on their prescription or over-the-counter medications.

On the jobsite or while driving or operating machinery, this means that workers could be lightheaded, nauseous, dizzy, drowsy or weak.

If workers are required to make decisions that affect the safety of themselves or others, the probability of making a mistake may increase.

Learnings and Suggestions: 
  • If you work in a safety sensitive environment, inform your doctor about the nature of your work.
  • Ask your doctor if he or she endorses the use of your prescription medication while at work.
  • Inform your employer about the warning labels or negative side-effects of your prescription or over-the-counter medications as alternate low risk work may be available or your employer may request you stay home until your condition stabilizes.

 

For more information on this submitted alert: 

Lana Kurz

Interfor, Interior Operations

Lana.Kurz@interfor.com

File attachments
Warning Labels on Prescription Meds (Interfor)-Jan_18-17.pdf

Close Call during fire extinguisher maintenance

Safety Alert Type: 
Hazardous Materials
Location: 
Vancouver Island
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2017-03-01
Company Name: 
Mount Sicker Lumber Company Ltd.
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

A mechanic was performing the regular maintenance inspection on a fire extinguisher at a dryland sort. The gauge was checked and the needle was in the green zone. The date was marked on the tag and then the extinguisher was flipped over.

In order to ensure the powder content had not settled and packed in the bottom, the mechanic tapped the bottom of the extinguisher with a rubber mallet.

The fire extinguisher exploded and shot the bottom end and the content 50 feet, narrowly missing the mechanic.

 

Learnings and Suggestions: 
  • Ensure eye protection is worn and perform maintenance in a safe area to prevent injury to self and others
  • Check that the gauge needle is in the middle of the green zone
  • Ensure the pin and tamper seal are intact and nozzle has not been hindered in any way
  • Wipe clean the cylinder to remove any dirt or grease
  • Inspect the cylinder - there should be no dents, leaks, rust, chemical deposits and/or other signs of abuse or wear
  • If the extinguisher is damaged or needs recharging, replace it
  • Recharge all extinguishers immediately after use, regardless of how much they were used
  • Shake the extinguisher or gently tap with a rubber mallet after thorough examination

 

For more information on this submitted alert: 
File attachments
Safety_Alert_Mount_Sicker-Fire_Extinguisher_Mar_1-17.pdf
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