Author Archives: Susan

Photo of hearing protection including ear muffs and earplugs

Workers at recycling facilities need hearing protection and other PPE to protect against exposure to high noise levels and other hazards.  This is the second post in a series about workplace hazards in the recycling industry. See the first post, Sorting out workplace safety in the waste and recycling industry. Hearing protection is essential for […]

Photo of colourful empty, labelled bottles in a recycling bin

Today’s waste and recycling industry workers may be exposed to a variety of hazards as they collect and sort electronics, scrap metal, glass, and much more.  This is the first post in a series about workplace hazards in the (ever-growing) recycling industry. In the past, most of what our communities threw away went to landfills. […]

Photo of worker and supervisor in a marine setting

More employers are using handheld devices to do business. WorkSafeBC has updated its Supervising for Safety course to make it compatible with tablets.  Roger Hall is the safety manager at RIMEX, a company that makes, sells, and distributes wheels and rims for industrial vehicles. Recently, he told me how his company is shifting to using […]

Photo of asbestos-containing thermal pipe insulation labelled by an inspector

Homeowners planning renos need to find out if their homes have asbestos, which, if not handled safely, can be deadly.  Raeleen Minchuk Prokopetz was less than a year old when she was exposed to asbestos during a home renovation. It happened “back in the late ’70s when there was no concern for asbestos,” she said, […]

Photo of tablet showing coloured graph of injury data

Data from the Employer Health and Safety Planning Tool Kit helps employers make more informed decisions about health and safety in their workplaces.  A solution for avoiding musculoskeletal injuries (MSIs) is brewing at Brewers Distributors Limited (BDL). The company is looking at personal lifting devices for their workers who handle significant amounts of product. The […]

Photo of two fishing vessels on the water

Fish Safe BC is reaching out to fishing crews to talk about vessel stability, PFD regulations, and the importance of planning for emergencies.  On March 6, 2017 — the first day of B.C.’s herring roe fishery — a crew member died when a seine fishing vessel capsized and sank in the waters off Comox. (Read more about […]

Photo of screens of the Cool or Tool app

The “Cool or Tool?” app raises construction workers’ awareness of what is and isn’t acceptable workplace conduct. It’s fun and takes only two minutes a day.  B.C.’s construction industry employs about 250,000 workers, including labourers and skilled tradespeople. In March 2019, several industry partners collaborated to launch the Builders Code, an initiative that provides B.C.’s […]

Photo of concrete pumper truck on bridge under construction

To help prevent concrete pumping incidents, stakeholders in B.C.’s construction industry launched a certification program for concrete pump truck operators.  Every day, workers on construction sites around the world operate concrete pump trucks to pour ready-made concrete. But when something goes wrong, it can be catastrophic. In 2016, one worker died and another was injured […]

of Nicole Boeder, recipient of the Roberta Ellis Award, with Chris McLeod, left, and Roberta Ellis, right

UBC graduate Nicole Boeder shares with me about being awarded for her work in occupational hygiene and what it’s like to be a safety advisor at the airport.  Recently I was “speaking of safety” with occupational hygienist Nicole Boeder. In 2017, she won the first-ever Roberta Ellis Award for Excellence in the Study and Practice […]

Photo of a worker using a powered pallet jack in a warehouse

An increase in online shopping is putting pressure on warehouse workers. It’s important they know how to operate power pallet jacks safely.  As online shopping rises in popularity, more companies are competing for their share of the market, promising lots of stock and quick delivery. At the same time, there is a labour shortage and […]