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Workers reminded of avalanche risks from WorkSafeBC

JOC News Service
Workers reminded of avalanche risks from WorkSafeBC

RICHMOND, B.C.  – WorkSafeBC is warning employers in primary-resource industries to identify, assess and mitigate avalanche risk.

Primary resource industries include forestry, pipeline construction, oil and gas, forestry, highway maintenance and mining.

The organization implored those industries with worksites in avalanche terrain to improve prevention efforts and risk awareness, and once an avalanche risk is identified, to implement appropriate safety plans.

Employers can work with their local WorkSafeBC prevention officer to establish appropriate measures to counter avalanche risk as well as visit, a news release stated,

“B.C. is full of such rugged terrain, and working in it without proper precautions is dangerous, even deadly,” Kamloops WorkSafeBC manager of prevention field services Patrick Davie said in a statement.

“Employers in these situations are required under the Occupational Health and Safety Regulation to ensure a well-rehearsed safety plan is in place and well understood by all workers.”

Since 1998 in B.C. three workers have died and 52 have accepted time-loss injury claims due to avalanches including two claims in 2017, the release said. Ski hills and winter lodges see the most injuries, but primary-resources industries see the next highest amount.

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