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B.C. chief mine inspector stresses industry follow provincial COVID-19 recommendations

B.C. chief mine inspector stresses industry follow provincial COVID-19 recommendations

VICTORIA, B.C. — The chief inspector of mines for British Columbia is telling the province’s major mines, sand and gravel, and placer operations in B.C. to ensure they follow the recommendations of the provincial health officer related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mines must follow the public health order prohibiting gatherings of more than 50 people, including reducing workers on site by encouraging work-from-home when possible.

Additionally town hall meetings to address the site must be reduced to less than 50 people and alternative media should be used when possible. Daily pre-shift safety meetings should also be broken down into smaller team, and in-person meetings should be avoided.

Bunkhouses and cafeterias are regulated by WorkSafeBC, but the chief inspector of mines also recommends mine managers limit numbers in such facilities to less than 50 people and to distance individuals in those facilities.

Mines inspectors and the Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources are in contact with mines around the province to ensure the health and safety of workers and the environment is maintained. This work is fluid as the ministry adjusts to the COVID-19 pandemic, a B.C. government release stated.

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