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WorkSafeBC strategy to reduce serious injuries in manufacturing

Focus on risk reduction with a two-pronged approach of inspections and employer self-evaluations.


RICHMOND, BC — WorkSafeBC has released a new three-year plan to help manufacturers reduce serious injuries .

The 2018-2020 Manufacturing High-Risk Strategy helps employers in strengthen safety management by focusing on risk reduction through inspections and employer evaluations.

“The injury rate and serious-injury rate in the manufacturing sector are above the provincial average, and the risks that drive serious injuries in this sector are varied,” said Dan Strand, director of prevention field services for WorkSafeBC. “Our goal with the high-risk strategies is simple — to reduce the number of serious injuries.”

In 2016, the serious-injury rate in manufacturing was 0.5% 100 person-years of employment, compared to 0.3% across all sectors.

More than one-third (35%) of the serious injuries in manufacturing were related to lack of or improper safeguarding and lockout.

Over a five-year period, approximately 390 workers suffered an amputation, primarily from machines, metal items and conveyors; 98% were to wrist, fingers and hands.

WorkSafeBC officers will focus on the higher-risk sub-sectors to evaluate whether the employer:

• Identifies hazards and risks

• Implements effective and compliant controls

• Develops safe-work procedures, programs and policies

• Provides related instruction, training and supervision

• Conducts effective inspections

• Performs effective accident investigations

• Engages the joint health & safety committee or worker health and safety representative

Seven areas of strategic focus will include:
• Safeguarding and lockout

• Powered tools

• Hand tools (knives)

• Material handling (falling objects)

• Falls from elevation

• Falls on same level

• Mobile equipment

Additional risk areas are fires and explosions.

High-risk strategies are also targeting construction, forestry and health care.

Click here for more information about the manufacturing high-risk strategy, including 2018 deliverables and timelines.

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