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Advisory on Construction Emergency Response Procedures

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Message from the Chief Prevention Officer: Lack of Construction Site Emergency Preparation Can Lead to Confusion

Every construction project must have emergency response procedures in place.

The Construction Projects Regulation under the Occupational Health and Safety Act requires that the constructor must establish written Emergency Response Procedures for every project.

Emergency preparedness helps to ensure workplace parties react appropriately in an emergency to minimize the human suffering and economic losses that can result from emergencies.

Constructors should review and revise their emergency response procedures on an ongoing basis to ensure they continue to meet the changing conditions of projects.

Being unprepared, slow response, lack of resources or the absence of trained workers can lead to chaos in an emergency. Also remember that circumstances may change during the course of an emergency. To ensure workers react appropriately and to minimize human suffering and financial losses, all workers on a project must know their responsibilities under the emergency response plan.

To prepare for an emergency, constructors should:

  • prepare written emergency plans and review those procedures with the joint health and safety committee or the health and safety representative for the project
  • ensure that the emergency plan procedures are followed at the project site
  • ensure appropriate access and egress points are available in case of emergency
  • ensure emergency procedures are posted in a visible place at the project site

Workers should also be prepared:

  • know the procedures in the emergency response plan
  • report emergencies to their supervisor
  • know they have the right to refuse unsafe work

Information to help protect you is available from the Ministry of Labour and its workplace partners.

Learn more about Emergency Response Planning for Construction Projects.

To report unsafe work practices, please contact the Ministry of Labour Health & Safety Contact Centre toll-free at 1-877-202-0008.

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