Every year, far too many electrical workers are permanently disabled, severely injured or electrocuted. The Occupational Health & Safety Act (OHSA) clearly states under the General Duty Clause that an employer has an obligation to take every precaution reasonable in the circumstances for the protection of a worker and, by extension, to control hazards in the workplace.
To meet this obligation, ATS hired Roberts Onsite (A.R. Milne) to develop and implement a Workplace Electrical Safety Program (WESP) that addresses employee exposure to each specific workplace electrical hazard such as electrocution, shock arc flash and arc blast. Establishing an effective WESP is the foundation for the prevention of injuries associated with electrical hazards. Policies, safe work procedures, energized work permits, hazard analysis, risk assessments, risk reduction controls, worker specific training, personal protective equipment (PPE), layered safety audits and other specific written program documents will improve protection for workers and aid in the prevention of property damage. We completed an Arc Flash Incident energy analysis at all the facilities and provided warning labels to communicate the hazards at the various electrical control panels. Roberts Onsite (A.R. Milne) used the Workplace Electrical Safety Program template and customized it to meet the ATS policy requirements. We completed a hazard identification and risk assessment to determine the workers permissions and restrictions in terms of the tasks performed by the various skill sets of the workers.
Regulations for working with electricity have been in place since the 1990’s in Ontario and other provinces. They are often enforced reactively following an accident largely because businesses did not have a Canadian Electrical Safety standard like 462 to follow. This project was completed proactively and has helped all of the employees at ATS to work safely the risk potential throughout their facilities clearly identify.
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