Ontario Issued More Than 2,200 Safety Orders to Prevent Construction Injuries
Province Ensuring Construction Workes are Safe on the Job
Ontario inspectors stopped work more than 200 times during an enforcement blitz to increase compliance with safety requirements when using heavy equipment at construction sites.
From October 1 to November 30, 2015, Ministry of Labour inspectors visited 967 construction projects. Some of the workplaces were visited more than once.
The inspectors issued 2,277 orders for violations of the Occupational Health and Safety Act and its regulations during the blitz. This included 268 orders to stop work on specific piece of equipment, machine, device or process in response to health and safety issues.
Of the stop work orders:
- 35 orders related to heavy equipment violations
- 53 orders involved fall protection violations
- 27 orders related to excavation violations
Protecting workers is part of the government's continued commitment to prevent workplace injuries and illness through its Safe At Work Ontario enforcement initiative.
- Most workers have the right to refuse unsafe work under the Occupational Health and Safety Act. Workers can report unsafe work to the Ministry of Labour any time by calling the Health and Safety Contact Centre at 1-877-202-0008. In an emergency, always call 911 immediately.
- Between 2009 and 2015, 25 per cent of worker deaths at construction sites (36 out of 142 deaths) involved heavy equipment, including inadvertent contact with power lines and equipment striking or tipping over a worker.
- Since 2008, ministry inspectors have conducted more than 620,000 field visits and 79 inspection blitzes.
- Inspectors have issued more than 1 million compliance orders across all sectors in Ontario since June 2008.
- Heavy equipment refers to any large motorized machinery or vehicle or heavy non-motorized unit such as an attachment, trailer or container that may be used at a construction project.
- As part of the effort to eliminate injuries and fatalities, the Ministry of Labour is working with stakeholders to develop and implement a Construction Health and Safety Action Plan. The action plan will focus on improving occupational health and safety in the construction sector with a particular emphasis on addressing hazards.
“Hazards involving heavy equipment can be very serious and, in many cases, result in a worker’s death. Our government is committed to improving worker safety through this and other blitzes.These initiatives demonstrate that non-compliance is non-negotiable. We want workers to be safe on the job and to go home to their families at the end of each work day.”
“The results show improvements are still needed in many areas and not just in the operation of heavy equipment. These areas include fall protection, personal protective equipment, excavations safety and emergency procedures. We must all work together to ensure workplaces are healthy and safe.”