Ontario’s Ministry of Labour’s Chief Prevention Officer, George Gritziotis is saying “the number of falls from heights in recent weeks is “absolutely unacceptable” and he is calling on the industry to “substantially” increase health and safety efforts.

We have had too many fatalities and critical injuries,” George Gritziotis said in a statement on the Ministry of Labour’s website. “These incidents are needless, intolerable tragedies that must stop. We are continually seeing people lose their lives as a result of falls, specifically in the construction sector. What’s most tragic is that these people are simply trying to earn a living. Instead they are risking their lives.”

In Ontario alone, there have been three fatalities, and injury from heights which occurred in March and April of this year.
  • Two masons were killed after falling about five storeys from a mast climbing work platform at a condominium under construction in Toronto on March 27, 2015.
  • Then, on April 23,2015 a man died after falling roughly five metres at a construction site in the Financial District of Toronto.
  • A worker at a Pickering site fell through a roof at an industrial building on April 30 and was injured.

“It’s the law that individuals who work at heights wear appropriate fall arrest equipment and take working at heights training,” Gritziotis said.”For employers that don’t comply, the ministry will apply the full force of the law. We have to break the cycle of fatalities in our construction sectors.”

Mr Gritziotis explains that as of April 1,2015, employers must ensure that certain workers complete working at heights training (that has been approved by the chief prevention officer). Paramount Safety Consulting Inc is an approved training provider, through the WHSC.
CSA Approved Fall Protection Harness

CSA Approved Fall Protection Harness

The requirements are for workers on construction projects who use travel restraint systems, fall restricting systems, fall arrest systems, safety nets and work belts or safety belts as fall protection methods.
“Our health and safety inspectors have been concentrating on fall hazards during their inspections, with a special focus on sloped roofing work in the residential construction sector. Inspectors will also be checking for proof of training for those who are working at heights,” “I am calling on all supervisors, employers, unions, and regulators to substantially increase their efforts for health and safety at construction workplace in Ontario. We all have a responsibility to do everything within our power to ensure that workers return home safe at the end of every work day.” Gritziotis said. Ben Scipione, Director of Health and Safety with Paramount Safety Consulting Inc. says “Workers in Ontario need to know the requirements of the new working at heights training”, “Its the employers responsibility to train any worker that is exposed to the hazards of falls”, “We need to act now, the safety of our workers is at risk” Scipione said
Approved

Approved Working at Heights Training Provider

Are you an employer in Ontario?  Do you have workers exposed to hazards of falling? Then you need to know the requirements of the Working at Heights standard. Our qualified  professionals can assist your organization with meeting compliance. Call us today to enquire about the new funding for training provided by the Ontario government Call us today at 289-527-3197  

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