Welding, Cutting and Burning

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Welding, cutting, and burning are types of hot work with multiple hazards that cannot be completely eliminated. Common hazards include:

  • Burns
  • Compressed gases
  • Electric shock
  • Fire and explosion
  • Foreign bodies
  • Noise and vibration
  • Toxic fumes and gases
  • Ultraviolent radiation

You can lower the risk of incidents by using effective controls, such as ventilation, air monitoring, safe work procedures, and personal protective equipment. Employers must take appropriate measures to reduce hazards to protect workers that are welding, cutting, and burning, as well as persons nearby.

Employer Responsibilities

Employers must:

  • Provide and maintain a workplace and the necessary equipment, systems, and tools in a manner that is safe and without risk to workers.
  • Provide the necessary information, instruction, training, supervision, and facilities.
  • Make sure workers, particularly supervisors, are made familiar with present and potential workplace hazards.
  • Make sure workers are given operating instructions for the personal protective equipment (PPE) or devices required for their protection from hazards.
  • Make sure that all buildings, structures (both temporary and permanent), excavations, machinery, equipment, workstations, and places of employment:
    • Can withstand the stresses likely to be imposed upon them, and can safely perform the function(s) for which they are used or intended.
    • Are inspected regularly to find and correct unsafe working conditions.
  • Make sure that safe work procedures are followed and they promote the safe interaction of workers and their work environment.
  • Use qualified and properly instructed workers to take emergency action to correct the unsafe condition that has an immediate threat to workers. Take every possible effort to control the hazard while the corrective action is taking place.
  • Make sure that all workers and other persons at the workplace are informed of the hazards to which they are likely to be exposed and what controls they must use to protect themselves and others.
  • Conduct a hazard assessment in a workplace where a need to rescue or evacuate workers may arise. When the risk assessment identifies a need for evacuation or rescue, develop written rescue and evacuation procedures and assign a worker to coordinate them. Written rescue and evacuation procedures are required for work in a confined space, where there is a risk of entrapment, and work with hazardous products.
  • Make sure workers weld, cut, or carry our similar work according to:
    • The current edition of CSA Standard W117.2 Safety in welding, cutting, and allied processes or another acceptable standard;
    • The manufacturer's instructions for the equipment being used; and
    • The requirements of the regulations.
  • Prevent welding, cutting, or burning where there is a danger of extreme heat coming into contact with an unprotected concrete surface because this contact can impair the concrete’s strength.

Machinery and equipment

Where machinery or equipment are used, the employer must make sure:

  • Each tool, machine and piece of equipment in the workplace is:
    • Capable of safely performing the functions for which it is used;
    • Selected, used and operated in accordance with;
      • The manufacturer's instructions, where available;
      • Safe work practices; and
      • The requirements of the Regulations.
    • Installed, inspected, tested, repaired, maintained or modified according to the manufacturer's instructions, legislation, a standard acceptable to OHS Division, or as specified by a professional engineer.
  • Machinery and equipment are fitted with adequate safeguards, except as otherwise specified in legislation, that:
    • Protects a worker from contact with hazardous power transmission parts;
    • Ensures a worker cannot access a hazardous point of operation; and
    • Safely contains material ejected by the work process that could be hazardous to a worker.
  • Safeguards, including an opening in a guard and the reach distance to a hazardous part, are used, applied, designed and constructed to meet the requirements of CSA Standard Z432 Safeguarding of machinery.
  • A safeguard is capable of effectively performing its intended function.
  • To not modify a fixed guard so that it can be easily removed without using tools.
  • A safeguard is designed, where practical, so it can be lubricated and routinely maintained without removing the guard.
  • An unsafe tool, machine, or piece of equipment is removed from service and identified in a manner that ensures that it is not inadvertently returned to service until it has been made safe for use.
  • A machine is located or safeguarded so that its operation does not endanger a worker using a normal passage route about the workplace or operating a nearby machine.
  • To clearly identify and mark a physical hazard in accordance with a standard acceptable to the OHS Division.
  • Safeguards are installed where a worker may be exposed to contact with rotating parts such as friction drives, shafts, couplings and collars, set screws and bolts, keys and keyways, and projecting shaft ends.
  • Welding, cutting, or burning equipment is free from defects, leaks, or oil and grease before use.
  • A regulator or an automatic reducing valve is used only for the gas for which it was designed.

Fire prevention and control

To prevent and reduce the risk of a fire during hot work, the employer must:

  • Make sure the design and occupancy of structures, and any fire alarm, detection, and fire protection equipment meet the requirements of the Fire Protection Services Act, 1991. Make sure work is carried out according to the Fire Prevention Act and the National Fire Code of Canada.
  • Maintain fire alarm, detection, and fire equipment according to the manufacturer's instructions and other legislative requirements.
  • Notify the local fire department of WHMIS hazardous products, explosives, consumer products, or hazardous waste when it is present in quantities at a workplace that may endanger firefighters if a fire was to occur. The employer is not required to notify the local fire department where materials are kept on site for less than five days and the employer has ensured another effective means to notify the fire department which is appropriate to the hazard, or where the workplace is not within the service area of a fire department.
  • Set up a system of inspections and tests to determine the presence of volatile or flammable substances, gases or vapours before work begins in a bilge, tank, compartment, or cargo space of marine equipment.
  • Ventilate, or provide another effective means to remove or control volatile or flammable substances, gases, or vapours present, or that arise from a work process.
  • Maintain a flammable liquid, vapour, or gas concentration sufficiently below the lower explosive limit (LEL) of the substance used to protect workers and meet regulatory requirements.
  • Eliminate or control existing or potential sources of ignition where a volatile or flammable substance, gas, or vapour is present or arises out of material, equipment, or work process.
  • Make suitable fire suppression equipment readily available based on the potential risk.
  • Prevent a spark of flame from contacting a cylinder, regulator, or hose of a compressed gas system.
  • Protect charged gas cylinders from sources of heat over 54.44 C.
  • Not allow welding, cutting, burning, or other hot work in an area where flammable substances may be present until:
    • Tests show workers can perform work safely; and
    • A suitable procedure(s) is in place to eliminate or control existing and potential sources of ignition. These tests must be carried out at intervals to ensure the safety of workers.
  • Install suitable safety devices to prevent reverse gas flow and arrest flashback on each hose in an oxygen system between the torch and the regulator, according to the manufacturer's instructions.
  • Provide receptacles for welding electrode stubs.

Where work involves more than one employer, a principal contractor must make sure:

  • Work schedules and tasks are organized to provide safe working conditions for workers.
  • Ignition sources resulting from the work of one employer are eliminated or adequately controlled where flammable gas or a flammable liquid is handled, used, or stored by another employer.

Compressed and liquified gases

Where workers use compressed or liquified gases for welding, cutting, or burning operations, the employer must:

  • Install suitable safety devices to prevent reverse gas flow and arrest flashback on each hose in an oxygen system between the torch and the regulator, according to the manufacturer's instructions.
  • Locate or protect cylinders, piping, and fittings for compressed and liquefied-gas systems to prevented them from damage.
  • Prevent a source of ignition (e.g., spark or flame) from encountering a cylinder, regulator, or hose of a compressed gas system and protect charged gas cylinders from a source of heat over 54.44 C.
  • Make sure welding, cutting, or burning equipment is free from defects and leaks, or oil and grease before use.
  • Use only standard fittings that are designed and manufactured for the specific compressed gas service.
  • Use a regulator or an automatic reducing valve only for the gas for which it was designed.
  • Store, transport, and use cylinders and tanks as directed by the manufacturer's instructions, applicable standards, and legislation.
  • Not allow a compressed gas cylinder to be hoisted by slings, dropped, or subjected to impact.
  • Make sure the valve protection cover is kept on when the cylinder is not connected for use.
  • Not allow oil or grease to contact an oxygen cylinder, valve, regulator, or other fitting or handle an oxygen cylinder or apparatus with oily or greasy hands or gloves.

Air quality

Where welding, cutting, or burning uses or produces chemicals that may affect air quality, the employer must:

  • Use, store, and handle hazardous substances only when all parts of WHMIS have been met, including labels, identifiers, safety data sheets (SDS), and worker education and training. Where WHMIS requirements are not met, an employer may only store a hazardous substance at the workplace while they are actively looking for the required information.
  • Eliminate hazardous products in the workplace, or substitute with a less hazardous product, if possible. If that is not possible, use engineering and administrative controls to make sure that hazardous products are used, stored, and handled safely. Consult the SDS or the manufacturer’s instructions for advice about controls.
  • Keep the amount of an airborne hazard as low as reasonably practical, and monitor the air quality where a hazardous product could make the air dangerous to the health and safety of workers.
  • Make sure exposure to a hazardous products is kept as low as is reasonably practical, and where a threshold limit value (TLV) has been set by the ACGIH, exposure must not exceed the TLV. These TLVs include:
  • Make sure that a TLV is adjusted for unusual work shifts (e.g., shifts that are not 8 hours a day in a 24-hour period), if applicable.
  • Develop policies and procedures to protect a worker from exposure to a reproductive toxin (when pregnant or trying to conceive) or a sensitizer, if applicable. Inform workers of the hazard and identify ways to reduce or eliminate exposure. Employers may provide a protective reassignment.

Ventilation

Employers must:

  • Make sure air in the workplace is clean and adequate for the number of workers and work processes.
  • Make sure ventilation systems:
    • Meet the standards set by ASHRAE and ACGIH.
    • Meet the requirements of the Canadian Electrical Code.
    • Have electrical and mechanical components designed to control all potential ignition sources.
  • Provide and maintain ventilation system(s) where a work process may give off airborne hazards (e.g., dust, fumes, fibres, bioaerosols, mists, vapours, and gases) that could be harmful or offensive to workers.
  • Install a local exhaust system as near as possible to the source of an airborne hazard to prevent it from being inhaled by a worker and spreading throughout the workplace. For example, provide effective local exhaust ventilation at a fixed workstation to minimize harmful exposure to air contaminants produced by welding, burning, or soldering.
  • Make sure a local exhaust system vents airborne hazards outdoors, and prevents them from re-entering the workplace.
  • Maintain all parts of a ventilation system, including cleaning the louvers regularly and making sure that all openings (e.g., exhaust vents and supply diffusers) are clean and unobstructed.
  • Make sure mechanical ventilation systems are constructed and maintained to minimize the growth and spread of micro-organisms (e.g., moulds, bacteria, and viruses), insects, and mites. Where possible, equip the system with access points for cleaning and inspection.
  • Make sure qualified workers inspect and maintain the ventilation system, including cleaning louvers, and cleaning or replacing filters. Filters must be changed as regularly as necessary to maintain airborne hazards below ACGIH TLVs and to maintain the appropriate number of air changes per hour.
  • Make sure all records of inspections, maintenance, and cleaning are completed by qualified workers and are made available to the OHS Committee, WHS Representative, or Designate, and an OHS Officer.
  • Make sure that ventilating fans are located so that airborne hazards do not recirculate (e.g., keep an adequate distance between supply and exhaust so exhaust is not captured by the air (supply) intake).
  • Make sure that the ventilation supply air intake is free from sources of contamination (e.g., exhaust from an idling vehicle).
  • Measure air volume at appropriate intervals to comply with ASHRAE, ACGIH, or other standards, as required.
  • Make sure any coating on metal that could emit harmful contaminants (such as paints, coatings, and degreasers) is removed from the base metal, whenever possible, before welding or cutting begins.

Confined space entry

Confined space incidents can happen suddenly, often without warning that something is wrong. Employers must make sure workers remain safe when working in or around confined spaces. Identify confined spaces, and assess and control the hazards.

Personal protective equipment and safety devices

Where workers are engaged in welding, burning or cutting operations employers must:

  • Give workers operating instructions for the personal protective equipment (PPE) or devices required for their protection from hazards.
  • Make sure necessary PPE and devices are used, such as:
    • Hearing protection
    • Personal clothing
    • Eye and face protection
    • Flame resistant clothing
    • Respiratory protection
  • Make sure that workers do not wear contact lenses where hazards exist that could create a danger to the eyes, such as work with certain chemicals and arc welding.
  • Not allow arc welding or a similar process unless a worker likely to be exposed to radiation from the arc is protected by an adequate screen, curtain, or partition, or wears suitable eye and face protection.
  • Make sure a screen, curtain, or partition made of or treated with a flame-resistant material or coating and with a non-reflective surface finish is used near arc welding or a similar process.
  • Make sure appropriate respiratory protection is provided to and worn by workers welding, cutting, or burning whenever ventilation is insufficient to keep hazard(s) below occupational exposure limits.

Supervisor Responsibilities

Supervisors must:

  • Make all reasonable efforts to protect the health, safety and welfare of the workers under their supervision.
  • Advise workers under their supervision of present and potential workplace hazards, and provide written or oral instructions about safety precautions that must be followed.
  • Make sure the workers under their supervision use or wear PPE and safety devices required for their protection.
  • Take appropriate action without delay where an unsafe condition is discovered and reported by a person.

Worker Responsibilities

Workers must:

  • Use or wear all necessary PPE and safety devices according to manufacturer’s instructions and training.
  • Co-operate with the employer and co-workers to protect the health and safety of everyone in the workplace.
  • Follow safe work practices and procedures.
  • Immediately report hazards to the supervisor or employer.
  • Not carry out work, or operate a tool, appliance, or equipment, where a present or potential hazard creates an imminent danger to themselves or others.
  • Participate in training and hazard assessments, where it is offered.
  • Not use equipment or perform work tasks where the required training has not yet taken place.
  • Make sure that all guards are in place and no one will be in danger, before starting any tools, machinery, or equipment.
  • Make sure a cylinder, regulator, or hose of a compressed gas system is protected from a spark or flame contacting it, before starting work.
  • Protect charged gas cylinders from a source of heat over 54.44 C.
  • Make sure welding, cutting, or burning equipment is free from defects, leaks, or oil and grease before it is used.
  • Use only standard fittings designed and manufactured for the specific compressed gas service.
  • Only use a regulator or an automatic reducing valve for the gas for which it was designed.
  • Secure a gas cylinder during storage, transportation and use and do not hoist it by slings, drop it, or subject it to impact.
  • Close a cylinder valve and drain the hose w hen work is over or when the cylinder is empty.
  • Keep the valve protection cover on when a cylinder is not connected for use.
  • Not permit oil or grease to come contact with an oxygen cylinder or a valve, regulator or other fitting.
  • Do not handle an oxygen cylinder or apparatus with oily or greasy hands or gloves.
  • Use receptacles provided for used welding electrode stubs.
  • Assume a confined space is hazardous, until it is proven not to be.
  • Not enter a confined space unless you hold a current certification in confined space entry, obtained from a WorkplaceNL-approved training provider. Confined space entry training expires after three years.

Related Topics

Welding

A process that joins materials, such as metals and thermoplastics. It uses heat and sometimes pressure to melt the material that is to be joined. It may also include a filler material. The pool of molten material that is created, cools to form a strong join, called a weld.

Hot work

means work which involves burning, welding, cutting, grinding, using fire or spark producing tools or other work that produces a source of ignition.

Personal protective equipment

Any equipment or device which protects a worker's body from injury, illness or death. PPE acts as a barrier to protect the worker from the hazard.
PPE should only be used:
  • Where other controls are not available or adequate.
  • As a short-term measure before controls are implemented.
  • During activities such as maintenance, clean up, and repair where other controls are not feasible or effective.
  • During emergency situations.

CSA

CSA is the Canadian Standards Association Group. Certain CSA standards are available for online viewing.
To access these, you must first create an account with "CSA Communities".
Go to: https://community.csagroup.org/login.jspa?referer=%252Findex.jspa
Once you are logged in, click on the text below the "OHS Standards / View Access" graphic.
Click on the jurisdiction of your choice to see the CSA Standards as referenced in that legislation.
Standards may also be purchased from CSA Group: https://store.csagroup.org/

WHMIS

Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS) is a standardized system which includes rules for hazard classification, labelling, safety data sheets (SDSs), and worker education and training. It provides workers with important health and safety information about hazardous substances in the workplace.

Reverse gas flow

Reverse gas flow may happen if one of the following conditions occurs:
  • One of the gas cylinders empties before the corresponding valve on the torch is closed, and gas from the other hose/cylinder flows back up the hose, possibly as far as the regulator.
  • Both cylinder valves are closed at the end of the task and both torch valves are opened to bleed off the oxygen and fuel gas, in which case the oxygen will likely reverse flow into the lower-pressure fuel gas hose and possibly into the regulator.
  • The torch tip gets plugged and gas from the higher-pressure line (usually the oxygen supply) reverse flows into the line with lower pressure.
Source: https://www.gov.nl.ca/dgsnl/files/ohs-guide-part-xxi.pdf

Flashback

A flashback may happen if:
  • (a) a combustible mixture of oxygen and fuel gas exists in the torch body, a hose and/or the regulator, and
  • (b) an ignition source starts the mixture burning.
Source: https://www.gov.nl.ca/dgsnl/files/ohs-guide-part-xxi.pdf

Principal contractor

The person primarily responsible for the carrying out of a project and includes the person who owns the thing in respect of which the project is being carried out.

Source of ignition

A source of ignition includes an open flame, spark-producing mechanical equipment, welding and cutting processes, smoking, static discharge, electrical equipment or an installation that is not approved for hazardous locations, as specified by the Canadian Electrical Code.

Safety Data Sheet

A safety data sheet (SDS) provided by a supplier that contains information required by the Hazardous Products Act (Canada), including potential hazards of a hazardous substance, instructions on how to work safely with it, and actions to take in an emergency. A SDS should not be confused with the label; as it contains much more detailed information.
Before using a hazardous product, it's essential to conduct a risk assessment by reading and fully understanding the SDS.

ACGIH (American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists)

The American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) is a scientific organization that develops occupational exposure limits for chemical and physical hazards. These limits can be found in their TLVs® and BEIs® book.
In Newfoundland and Labrador, acceptable occupational exposure limits are established by the ACGIH.

Time weighted average (TWA)

The time weighted average concentration for a conventional 8 hour workday and a 40 hour workweek, to which it is believed that nearly all workers may be repeatedly exposed day after day, over a working lifetime, without adverse health effects.

Short-term exposure limit (STEL)

A 15 minute time weighted average exposure that should not be exceeded at any time during the workday, even if the 8 hour TWA is within the TLV-TWA.

The TLV-STEL is this the concentration at which it is believed that nearly all workers can be exposed continuously for a short period of time without suffering from  (1) irritation; (2)chronic or irreversible tissue damage;(3) dose-rate-dependent toxic effects; or (4) narcosis if sufficient degree to increase the likelihood of accidental injury, impaired self-rescue or materially reduced work efficacy.

Exposures up to the TLV-STEL should be less than 15 minutes, should occur no more than four times per day, and there should be at least 60 minutes between successive this range.

Sensitizer

A substance that causes many people or animals to develop an allergic reaction after repeated exposure.

ASHRAE

ASHRAE, founded in 1894, is a global society advancing human well-being through sustainable technology for the built environment. The Society and its members focus on building systems, energy efficiency, indoor air quality, refrigeration and sustainability within the industry. Through research, standards writing, publishing and continuing education, ASHRAE shapes tomorrow’s built environment today. ASHRAE was formed as the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers by the merger in 1959 of American Society of Heating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHAE) founded in 1894 and The American Society of Refrigerating Engineers (ASRE) founded in 1904.

https://www.ashrae.org/

Canadian Electrical code

The Canadian Electrical Code, Part I has been developed and updated to help better protect electrical workers and promote improved consistency in electrical installations across the country. It can be purchased at
https://www.csagroup.org/store/product/CSA%20C22.1%3A21/

Qualified worker

A person who is knowledgeable of the work, the hazards involved and the means to control the hazards, by reason of education, training, experience or a combination of them.

OHS committee

Where 10 or more workers are employed at a workplace, the employer shall establish an occupational health and safety committee to monitor the health, safety and welfare of the workers employed at the workplace.
A committee shall consist of 2 to 12 persons. Where the employer and workers cannot agree on the size of the committee, the minister may establish its size.
At least half of the members are to be persons representing the workers who are not connected with the management. The persons representing the workers are to be elected by other workers or appointed in accordance with the constitution of the union of which the workers are members.
The employer shall appoint sufficient employer representatives to ensure that the committee may function.
The employer and worker members of a committee shall elect a co-chair person from their respective groups.
The employer shall post the names of the committee members in a prominent place at the workplace.
A committee:
  • Shall seek to identify aspects of the workplace that may be unhealthy or unsafe;
  • Shall participate in a workplace inspection that an employer is required by the regulations to conduct;
  • May make recommendations to principal contractors, employers, workers, self-employed persons and the assistant deputy minister or an officer for the enforcement of standards to protect the health, safety and welfare of workers at the workplace;
  • Shall receive complaints from workers as to their concerns about the health and safety of the workplace and their welfare;
  • Shall establish and promote health and safety educational programs for workers;
  • Shall maintain records as to the receipt and disposition of complaints received from workers;
  • Shall co-operate with the assistant deputy minister or an officer who is exercising his or her duties under the act; and
  • Shall perform those other duties and follow those procedures that may be prescribed by the regulations.
Meetings of a committee shall take place during regular working hours at least once every 3 months and a worker is not to suffer loss of pay or other benefits while engaged in a meeting of a committee.

Worker Health and Safety Representative

Where less than 10 workers are employed at a workplace, the employer shall ensure that a worker not connected with the management of the workplace is designated as the worker health and safety representative to monitor the health, safety and welfare of workers employed at the workplace.

The worker health and safety representative is to be elected by other workers at the workplace or appointed in accordance with the constitution of the labour union of which the workers are members.
The employer shall post the name of the worker health and safety representative in a prominent place at the workplace.
A worker health and safety representative has the same duties as those imposed upon a committee where that is reasonably practicable.
A worker health and safety representative shall consult with his or her employer while performing his or her duties.

Workplace Health and Safety Designate

Where less than 6 persons are engaged at a workplace and the designation of a worker health and safety representative is impracticable, the employer may designate a workplace health and safety designate to monitor the health, safety and welfare of workers employed at the workplace.
The workplace health and safety designate shall be appointed by the employer. The workplace health and safety designate may be either a worker connected with the management of the workplace; or the employer, if the designation of a worker connected with the management of the workplace is not practicable.
If the assistant deputy minister or an officer is of the opinion that a workplace health and safety designate cannot adequately monitor the health, safety and welfare of workers employed at the workplace, the assistant deputy minister or officer shall order, in writing, that a worker health and safety representative be designated.
The employer shall provide and pay for training for the workplace health and safety designate. The training provided shall meet the requirements that the Workplace Health and Safety Compensation Commission may set. An employer shall compensate a worker for participating in training as if the training were regular work.
The workplace health and safety designate shall participate in the training provided.
The employer shall post the name of the worker health and safety designate in a prominent place at the workplace.
A worker health and safety designate has the same duties as those imposed upon a committee where that is reasonably practicable.
A worker health and safety designate, where the workplace health and safety designate is not the employer, shall consult with his or her employer while performing his or her duties. Where the workplace health and safety designate is the employer, he or she shall consult with the workers while performing his or her duties.

OHS Officer

An occupational health and safety officer appointed under this Act and includes a medical practitioner providing services under section 20 while he or she is providing those services.

Confined space

An enclosed or partially enclosed space that:
  • Is not designed or intended for human occupancy except for the purpose of performing work;
  • Has restricted means of access and egress; and
  • May become hazardous to a person entering it as a result of:
    • It's design, construction, location or atmosphere,
    • The materials or substances in it, or
    • Any other conditions relating to it.

OCCUPATIONAL HEALTH AND SAFETY ACT
R.S.N.L. 1990, c. O-3

Section 2 Definitions

2. In this Act

(a) "assistant deputy minister" means an assistant deputy minister appointed under section 9 of the Executive Council Act for the proper conduct of this Act;

(b) "board" means the Labour Relations Board referred to in the Labour Relations Act;

(c) "committee" means an occupational health and safety committee referred to in this Act;

(d) "council" means the Occupational Health and Safety Council referred to in this Act;

(e) "division" means the Occupational Health and Safety Division;

(f) "employer" means a person who employs 1 or more workers;

(g) "minister" means the minister appointed under the Executive Council Act to administer this Act;

(h) "occupation" means employment prescribed by the regulations as an occupation;

(i) "officer" means an occupational health and safety officer appointed under this Act and includes a medical practitioner providing services under section 20 while he or she is providing those services;

(j) "principal contractor" means the person primarily responsible for the carrying out of a project and includes the person who owns the thing in respect of which the project is being carried out;

(k) "self-employed person" means a person who is engaged in an occupation on his or her own behalf;

(k.1) "supervisor" means a person authorized or designated by an employer to exercise direction and control over workers of the employer;

(l) "supplier" means a person who rents or leases tools, appliances or equipment to be used by a worker;

(m) "worker" means a person engaged in an occupation; and

(n) "workplace" means a place where a worker or self-employed person is engaged in an occupation and includes a vehicle or mobile equipment used by a worker in an occupation.

[S.N.L. 1999, c. 28, s. 1; 2006, c. 16, s. 1; 2009, c. 19, s. 1]

Section 5 Specific duties of employers

5. Without limiting the generality of section 4, an employer

(a) shall, where it is reasonably practicable, provide and maintain a workplace and the necessary equipment, systems and tools that are safe and without risk to the health of his or her workers;

(b) shall, where it is reasonably practicable, provide the information, instruction, training and supervision and facilities that are necessary to ensure the health, safety and welfare of his or her workers;

(c) shall ensure that his or her workers, and particularly his or her supervisors, are made familiar with health or safety hazards that may be met by them in the workplace;

(d) shall, where it is reasonably practicable, conduct his or her undertaking so that persons not in his or her employ are not exposed to health or safety hazards as a result of the undertaking;

(e) shall ensure that his or her workers are given operating instruction in the use of devices and equipment provided for their protection;

(f) shall consult and co-operate with the occupational health and safety committee, the worker health and safety representative or the workplace health and safety designate, where the employer is not the workplace health and safety designate, on all matters respecting occupational health and safety at the workplace;

(f.1) shall respond in writing within 30 days to a recommendation of

(i) the occupational health and safety committee at the workplace,

(ii) the worker health and safety representative at the workplace, or

(iii) where the employer is not the workplace health and safety designate, the workplace health and safety designate at the workplace

indicating that the recommendation has been accepted or that it has been rejected, with a reason for the rejection;

(f.2) shall provide periodic written updates to

(i) the occupational health and safety committee at the workplace,

(ii) the worker health and safety representative at the workplace, or

(iii) where the employer is not the workplace health and safety designate, the workplace health and safety designate at the workplace

on the implementation of a recommendation accepted by the employer until the implementation is complete;

(f.3) shall consult with

(i) the occupational health and safety committee at the workplace,

(ii) the worker health and safety representative at the workplace, or

(iii) where the employer is not the workplace health and safety designate, the workplace health and safety designate at the workplace

about the scheduling of workplace inspections that are required by the regulations, and ensure that the committee, the worker health and safety representative or the workplace health and safety designate participates in the inspection; and

(g) shall co-operate with a person exercising a duty imposed by this Act or regulations.

[S.N.L. 1999, c. 28, s. 2; 2001, c. 10, s. 25; 2004, c. 52, s. 1]

Section 5.1 Supervisors' general duty

5.1 A supervisor shall ensure, where it is reasonably practicable, the health, safety and welfare of all workers under his or her supervision.

[S.N.L. 2009, c. 19, s. 2]

Section 5.2 Specific duties of supervisors

5.2 A supervisor shall

(a) advise workers under his or her supervision of the health or safety hazards that may be met by them in the workplace;

(b) provide proper written or oral instructions regarding precautions to be taken for the protection of all workers under his or her supervision; and

(c) ensure that a worker under his or her supervision uses or wears protective equipment, devices or other apparel that this Act, the regulations or the worker's employer requires to be used or worn.

[S.N.L. 2009, c. 19, s. 2]

Section 7 Specific duties of workers

7. A worker

(a) shall co-operate with his or her employer and with other workers in the workplace to protect

(i) his or her own health and safety,

(ii) the health and safety of other workers engaged in the work of the employer,

(iii) the health and safety of other workers or persons not engaged in the work of the employer but present at or near the workplace;

(a.1) shall use devices and equipment provided for his or her protection in accordance with the instructions for use and training provided with respect to the devices and equipment;

(b) shall consult and co-operate with the occupational health and safety committee, the worker health and safety representative or the workplace health and safety designate at the workplace; and

(c) shall co-operate with a person exercising a duty imposed by this Act or regulations.

[S.N.L. 1999, c. 28, s. 3; 2001, c. 10, s. 26; 2004, c. 52, s. 2]

Section 8 Imminent danger

8. A worker shall not

(a) carry out work where there exists an imminent danger to his or her or another worker's health or safety or the health or safety of another person; or

(b) operate a tool, appliance or equipment that will create an imminent danger to his or her or another worker's health or safety or the health or safety of another person.

Section 37 Committees

37. Where 10 or more workers are employed at a workplace, the employer shall establish an occupational health and safety committee to monitor the health, safety and welfare of the workers employed at the workplace.

[S.N.L. 1999, c. 28, s. 9]

Section 38 Membership of committees

38. (1) A committee shall consist of the number of persons that may be agreed to by the employer and the workers but shall not be less than 2 nor more than 12 persons.

(2) At least half of the members of a committee are to be persons representing the workers at the workplace who are not connected with the management of the workplace.

(3) The persons representing the workers on the committee are to be elected by other workers at the workplace or appointed in accordance with the constitution of the union of which the workers are members.

(4) Where the employer and workers cannot agree on the size of the committee, the minister may establish its size.

(5) The employer shall appoint sufficient employer representatives to ensure that the committee may function.

(6) The employer and worker members of a committee shall elect a co- chairperson from their respective groups.

(7) The employer shall post the names of the committee members in a prominent place at the workplace.

Section 39 Duties of committees

39. A committee established under section 37

(a) shall seek to identify aspects of the workplace that may be unhealthy or unsafe;

(a.1) shall participate in a workplace inspection that an employer is required by the regulations to conduct;

(b) may make recommendations to principal contractors, employers, workers, self-employed persons and the assistant deputy minister or an officer for the enforcement of standards to protect the health, safety and welfare of workers at the workplace;

(c) shall receive complaints from workers as to their concerns about the health and safety of the workplace and their welfare;

(d) shall establish and promote health and safety educational programs for workers;

(e) shall maintain records as to the receipt and disposition of complaints received from workers under paragraph (c);

(f) shall co-operate with the assistant deputy minister or an officer who is exercising his or her duties under the Act; and

(g) shall perform those other duties and follow those procedures that may be prescribed by the regulations.

[S.N.L. 2001, c. 10, s. 29]

Section 40 Meetings of committee

40. Meetings of a committee shall take place during regular working hours at least once every 3 months and a worker is not to suffer loss of pay or other benefits while engaged in a meeting of a committee.

Section 41 Worker representative

41. (1) Where less than 10 workers are employed at a workplace, the employer shall ensure that a worker not connected with the management of the workplace is designated as the worker health and safety representative to monitor the health, safety and welfare of workers employed at the workplace.

(2) The employer shall provide and pay for training for the worker health and safety representative.

(3) The training provided under subsection (2) shall meet the requirements the Workplace Health Safety and Compensation Commission may set.

(4) The worker health and safety representative shall participate in the training provided under this section.

(5) An employer shall compensate a worker for participating in training under this section as if the training were regular work.

[S.N.L. 2001, c. 10, s. 30; 2004, c. 47, s. 27]

Section 42 Election of representative

42. The worker health and safety representative is to be elected by other workers at the workplace or appointed in accordance with the constitution of the labour union of which the workers are members.

Section 43 Posting name

43. The employer shall post the name of the worker health and safety representative or the workplace health and safety designate in a prominent place at the workplace.

[S.N.L. 2004, c. 52, s. 9]

Section 44 Duties of representative

44. (1) A worker health and safety representative or the workplace health and safety designate has the same duties as those imposed upon a committee under section 39, where that is reasonably practicable.

(2) A worker health and safety representative or the workplace health and safety designate, where the workplace health and safety designate is not the employer, shall consult with his or her employer while performing his or her duties under subsection (1).

(3) Where the workplace health and safety designate is the employer, he or she shall consult with the workers while performing his or her duties under subsection (1).

[S.N.L. 2004, c. 52, s. 10]

Occupational Health and Safety Regulations, 2012
N.L.R. 5/12

Part I GENERAL

Section 2 Interpretation

2. (1) In these regulations

(a) "accident" includes

(i) an event occasioned by a physical or natural cause, or

(ii) disablement arising out of and in the course of employment;

(b) "ACGIH" means the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists;

(c) "Act" means the Occupational Health and Safety Act ;

(d) "administrative controls" means the provision, use and scheduling of work activities and resources in the workplace, including planning, organizing, staffing and coordinating, for the purpose of controlling risk;

(e) "ASHRAE" means the American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Engineers;

(f) "authorized" means, in reference to a person, a qualified person designated by an employer to carry out specific functions;

(g) "commission" means the Workplace Health, Safety and Compensation Commission established under the Workplace Health, Safety and Compensation Act ;

(h) "competent" means a person who is

(i) qualified because of that person's knowledge, training and experience to do the assigned work in a manner that ensures the health and safety of every person in the workplace, and

(ii) knowledgeable about the provisions of the Act and these regulations that apply to the assigned work, and about potential or actual danger to health or safety associated with the assigned work;

(i) "construction" means building, erection, excavation, alteration, repair, renovation, dismantling, demolition, structural maintenance, painting, moving, land clearing, earth moving, grading, street and highway building, concreting, equipment installation and alteration and the structural installation of construction components and materials in any form or for any purpose, and work in connection with it;

(j) "CSA" means the Canadian Standards Association;

(k) "engineering controls" means the physical arrangement, design or alteration of workstations, equipment, materials, production facilities or other aspects of the physical work environment, for the purpose of controlling risk;

(l) "hazardous health occupation" means an occupation from which an occupational disease may arise;

(m) "hot work" means work which involves burning, welding, cutting, grinding, using fire or spark producing tools or other work that produces a source of ignition;

(n) "injury" means

(i) an injury as a result of a chance event occasioned by a physical or natural cause, (ii) an injury as a result of wilful and intentional act, not being the act of the worker, (iii) disablement, (iv) occupational disease, or (v) death as a result of an injury arising out of and in the course of employment and includes a recurrence of an injury and an aggravation of a pre-existing condition but does not include stress other than stress that is an acute reaction to a sudden and unexpected traumatic event;

(o) "ISO" means the International Organization for Standardization;

(p) "mine" means mine as defined in the Mining Act ;

(q) "occupation" means an employment, business, calling or pursuit but does not include an endeavour that is not included in one of the classes of occupations in the current National Occupational Classification List developed by the Department of Human Resources and Social Development Canada in collaboration with Statistics Canada;

(r) "occupational disease" means a disease prescribed by regulations under section 90 of the Workplace Health, Safety and Compensation Act and another disease peculiar to or characteristic of a particular industrial process, trade or occupation;

(s) "occupational health service" means a service established in or near a workplace to maintain and promote the physical and mental well-being of workers and may include personnel, equipment, transportation, supplies and facilities;

(t) "plant" means buildings, equipment and facilities where a worker or self-employed person is engaged in an occupation;

(u) "professional engineer" means a person who holds a certificate of registration to engage in the practice of engineering under the Engineers and Geoscientists Act;

(v) "proof test" means a test applied to a product to determine material or manufacturing defects;

(w) "qualified" means being knowledgeable of the work, the hazards involved and the means to control the hazards, by reason of education, training, experience or a combination of them;

(x) "TLV" means the documentation of threshold limit values for chemical substances and physical agents in the work environment published annually or more frequently by the ACGIH; and

(y) "work platform" means an elevated or suspended temporary work base for workers.

(2) In these regulations, a reference to a code or guideline, unless otherwise stated, includes amendments to that code or guideline and a reference shall be presumed to be a reference to the most current code or guideline.

(3) Where there is a conflict between a standard established by these regulations or a code or standard adopted by these regulations, the more stringent standard applies.

Section 4 Responsibility of division

4. The division may approve and distribute educational material, information and statistics required in the administration of the Act.

Part III GENERAL DUTIES

Section 14 General duties of employers

14. (1) An employer shall ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, that all buildings, structures, whether permanent or temporary, excavation, machinery, workstations, places of employment and equipment are capable of withstanding the stresses likely to be imposed upon them and of safely performing the functions for which they are used or intended.

(2) An employer shall ensure that necessary protective clothing and devices are used for the health and safety of his or her workers.

(3) The employer shall ensure that safe work procedures are followed at all workplaces.

(4) An employer shall ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, that work procedures promote the safe interaction of workers and their work environment to minimize the potential for injury.

Section 17 General duties of workers

17. (1) A worker shall make proper use of all necessary safeguards, protective clothing, safety devices, lifting devices or aids, and appliances

(a) designated and provided for his or her protection by the employer; or

(b) required under these regulations to be used or worn by a worker.

(2) A worker shall follow the safe work procedure in which he or she has been instructed.

(3) A worker shall immediately report a hazardous work condition that may come to his or her attention to the employer or supervisor.

Section 18 Safety inspections

18. (1) Regular inspections of all buildings, excavations, structures, machinery, equipment, work practices and places of employment shall be made by the employer or his or her representative at intervals to ensure that safe working conditions are maintained and that unsafe conditions found as a result of the inspection are remedied without delay.

(2) Where an unsafe condition is discovered by a person, it shall be reported as soon as practicable to a supervisor who shall ensure that appropriate action is taken, without delay, to prevent a worker from being injured.

(3) Where emergency action is required to correct a condition that constitutes an immediate threat to workers, only those qualified and properly instructed workers necessary to correct the unsafe condition shall be exposed to the hazard and every possible effort shall be made to control the hazard while the corrective action is taking place.

Section 19 Co-ordination of work

19. (1) An owner shall ensure that all workers and other persons at the workplace are informed of

(a) the hazards of an owner's operations or site conditions; and

(b) the health and safety activities to be used to address the hazards.

(2) A principal contractor shall ensure work schedules and tasks are organized to provide safe working conditions for workers.

Part V GENERAL HEALTH AND SAFETY REQUIREMENTS

Section 26 Personal conduct

26. (1) A worker with a medically documented physical or mental impairment shall not be assigned to work where those impairments endanger the health and safety of that worker or other workers.

(2) An employer, supervisor or worker shall not enter or remain on the premises of a workplace or at a job site while his or her ability to perform work responsibilities is impaired by intoxicating substances or another cause that endangers his or her health or safety or that of other workers.

(3) A person shall not engage in horseplay, scuffling, unnecessary running or jumping, practical jokes or other similar activity or behaviour that may create or constitute a hazard to workers.

(4) Before tools, machinery or equipment is put into operation, the person responsible for doing so shall ensure that all guards are in place and that putting the equipment into operation does not endanger a person.

Section 38 Emergency plan risk assessment

38. (1) An employer shall conduct a risk assessment in a workplace in which a need to rescue or evacuate workers may arise.

(2) Where the risk assessment required by subsection (1) shows a need for evacuation or rescue, appropriate written procedures shall be developed and implemented and a worker assigned to coordinate their implementation.

(3) Written rescue and evacuation procedures are required for but not limited to

(a) work at high angles;

(b) work in confined spaces or where there is a risk of entrapment;

(c) work with hazardous substances;

(d) underground work;

(e) work in close proximity to power lines;

(f) work on or over water; and

(g) workplaces where there are persons who require physical assistance to be moved.

(4) Where a workplace is a low risk workplace in the opinion of an employer, the employer shall post information about escape routes and conduct emergency drills he or she considers appropriate.

Part VI OCCUPATIONAL HEALTH REQUIREMENTS

Section 42 Hazardous substances

42. (1) An employer shall monitor the use or presence of substances at the workplace that may be hazardous to the health and safety of workers.

(2) In accordance with subsection (1), an employer shall implement a chemical and biological control program commensurate with the associated risks.

(3) In accordance with subsection (1), an employer shall eliminate hazardous substances from the workplace and where this is not practicable substitute a less hazardous substance.

(4) Where hazardous substances exist, an employer shall employ engineering and administrative controls to ensure their safe use.

(5) An employer shall ensure that a substance produced, used or handled at a workplace which by reason of toxicity, flammability or reactivity creates a risk to the health or safety of workers is controlled in accordance with the Safety Data Sheet or manufacturer's specifications.

(6) Where the minister determines that the use or presence of a hazardous substance at a place of employment may be injurious to the health of workers, the minister may inquire into the substance and may prohibit, restrict or modify the use of the substance until a time that an employer establishes to the minister that its use or presence is not injurious to the health of workers.

(7) An employer shall ensure that

(a) atmospheric contamination of the workplace by hazardous substances is kept as low as is reasonably practicable;

(b) a worker is informed of the nature and degree of health effects of the hazardous substances to which the worker is exposed;

(c) exposure of a worker to hazardous substances is as minimal as is reasonably practicable, and where a threshold limit value has been established by the ACGIH, exposure shall not exceed the threshold limit value;

(d) except as otherwise determined by the division, a worker is not exposed to a substance that exceeds the ceiling limit, short-term exposure limit or 8-hour TWA (time weighted average) limit prescribed by ACGIH; and

(e) where a substance referred to in paragraph (d) has an 8-hour TWA limit, a worker's exposure to the substance does not exceed

(i) 3 times the 8-hour TWA limit for more than a total of 30 minutes during the work period, and

(ii) 5 times the 8-hour TWA limit.

(8) Where extended work periods exist where the work period is more than 8 hours in a 24 hour day, the 8 hour exposure shall be adjusted accordingly as outlined in the ACGIH "Threshold Limit Values (TLVs)" Manual.

(9) Adjustment of TLVs, as required, shall be done in consultation with the occupational health and safety committee, the worker health and safety representative or the workplace health and safety designate, as appropriate.

(10) Where a worker is exposed to a substance which is designated as a reproductive toxin or a sensitizer, an employer shall develop policy and procedures appropriate to the risk, which may include protective reassignment.

(11) Where workers may be exposed to contact with chemicals harmful to the skin, facilities shall be available for the worker to effectively cleanse the contaminated body areas, including, where corrosive chemicals are involved, emergency water baths, showers, jump tanks, eyewash facilities or other effective means of treatment.

(12) The policy and procedures required by subsection (10) shall include

(a) informing workers about the reproductive toxin and identifying ways to minimize exposure to the toxin for a worker who has advised the employer of pregnancy or intent to conceive a child; and

(b) identifying ways to eliminate exposure to a sensitizer for a worker who is or may become sensitized to that substance.

(13) Solvents, oils, greases, paints or other flammable substances shall be cleaned up by using an approved non-combustible grease and oil absorbent which shall be placed in covered metal containers before disposal.

(14) Containers referred to in subsection (13) shall not be stored in work areas.

[S.N.L. 2019, c. 8, s. 20]

Section 45 Ventilation

45. (1) An employer shall ensure that

(a) there is appropriate circulation of clean and wholesome air;

(b) there is adequate ventilation; and

(c) impurities are made harmless and inoffensive

in a workplace in accordance with standards established by ASHRAE and ACGIH.

(2) Where a work or process gives off dust, fumes, vapour, mist or other impurity of a kind and quantity liable to be injurious or offensive to a worker, an employer shall provide, maintain and ensure the proper use of a ventilation system sufficient to protect the worker against inhalation of impurities and to prevent impurities accumulating in the work space.

(3) Where practicable, local exhaust ventilation shall be installed and maintained near to the point of origin of an impurity to prevent it entering the air of the workplace and the breathing zone of its workers.

(4) Impurities removed under subsections (2) and (3) shall be exhausted clear of a workplace and prevented from entering a workplace.

(5) An employer shall ensure that,

(a) all parts of a ventilation system are maintained;

(b) louvers are cleaned regularly; and

(c) ventilation openings are free of obstruction and sources of contamination.

(6) Where possible, exhaust from an internal combustion engine operated indoors shall be vented to the outdoors.

(7) Where mobile equipment powered by an internal combustion engine is operated indoors or in an enclosed work area

(a) the engine shall be adequately serviced and maintained to minimize the concentration of air contaminants in the exhaust to the applicable ACGIH Standards, and

(b) the work area shall be assessed to determine the potential for exposure of workers to harmful levels of exhaust components.

(8) Where a worker is or may be exposed to an exhaust gas component in concentrations exceeding the applicable exposure limits, exhaust gas scrubbers, catalytic converters, or other engineering controls shall be installed.

(9) An employer, contractor or owner shall ensure that

(a) the mechanical ventilation system

(i) including humidification equipment, is constructed and maintained to minimize the growth and dissemination of micro-organisms, insects and mites through the ventilation system, and

(ii) where reasonably practicable, is readily accessible for cleaning and inspection;

(b) a qualified person inspects and maintains all parts of a mechanical ventilation system, cleans all louvers and replaces or adequately cleans all filters at a frequency that is sufficient to protect the health and safety of workers;

(c) a record of all inspections, maintenance and cleaning of the mechanical ventilation system is

(i) completed by a qualified person who performs the work, and

(ii) readily available for examination by the occupational health and safety committee, or worker representative or designate or, where there is no committee, representative or designate, by the workers and the occupational health and safety officer;

(d) when mechanical ventilation is required, the ventilating fans are located to prevent recirculation of contaminated air; and

(e) measurements of the air volume of the mechanical ventilation system are taken at suitable intervals to ensure compliance with the minimum air volume requirements in accordance with standards established by ASHRAE, ACGIH or other applicable standard approved by the minister.

(10) An employer shall ensure that, wherever possible, a less hazardous substance or work process is used in preference to a more hazardous substance or process.

(11) A ventilation system used to control airborne contaminants shall have electrical and mechanical systems designed to control all potential ignition sources and meet the requirements of the Canadian Electrical Code.

Section 68 Noise hazards

68. (1) When a worker is required to work in an area in which noise levels exceed the criteria for permissible noise exposure established by the ACGIH Noise Threshold Limit Values (TLVs)

(a) the employer shall first take appropriate action to implement control measures to reduce noise to acceptable levels; and

(b) where it is not practicable to reduce the noise to acceptable levels or to isolate workers from the noise, the workers shall wear personal protective equipment in accordance with CSA Z94.2 "Hearing Protection Devices - Performances, Selection, Care and Use" .

(2) Where conditions referred to in subsection (1) exist, an employer shall establish and maintain a hearing conservation program.

(3) A hearing conservation program established under subsection (2) shall comply with the following minimum requirements:

(a) a noise survey of the workplace to identify high noise areas shall be performed in accordance with CSA Z107.56 "Procedures for the Measurement of Occupational Noise Exposure" ;

(b) hearing tests for every worker exposed to noise levels in excess of permissible levels to be conducted on an annual basis or where recommended by an audiologist or occupational physician;

(c) a hearing test, within 3 months of commencement of employment, for each new worker who is exposed to noise in excess of the permissible levels; and

(d) mandatory training and education for all workers in the health hazards of noise and the fitting, maintenance, care and use of hearing protection.

(4) A hearing conservation program shall be documented and those records shall be kept by the employer or the employer designate while the worker remains employed by the employer.

(5) An employer shall post and maintain signs at entrances to or on the periphery of areas where persons are exposed to high noise levels in excess of the threshold limit.

(6) A sign referred to in subsection (5) shall clearly state that a noise hazard exists and shall describe the personal protective equipment that is required.

(7) Upon termination of employment, a worker may request from the employer a record of noise exposure during the term of employment.

Part VII PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT

Section 72 Instruction

72. An employer shall ensure that a worker who wears personal protective equipment is adequately instructed in the correct use, limitations and assigned maintenance duties for the equipment to be used.

Section 73 Personal clothing and accessories

73. (1) The personal clothing of a worker shall be of a type and in a condition which does not expose the worker to an unnecessary or avoidable hazard.

(2) Where there is a danger of contact with moving parts of machinery or with electrically energized equipment, or where the work process presents similar hazards

(a) the clothing of a worker shall fit closely about the body;

(b) dangling neckwear, bracelets, wristwatches, rings or similar articles shall not be worn, except for medical alert bracelets which may be worn with transparent bands that hold the bracelets snugly to the skin; and

(c) cranial and facial hair shall be confined or worn at a length which shall prevent it from being snagged or caught in the work process.

Section 75 Eye and face protection

75. Where a worker handles or is exposed to materials or conditions that are likely to injure or irritate the eye or face, an employer shall ensure that he or she wears properly fitting face and eye protection appropriate to the conditions of the workplace and in accordance with the requirements of CSA Standard CAN/CSA Z94.3 "Industrial Eye and Face Protectors".

Section 76 Prescription safety eyewear

76. (1) Prescription safety eyewear shall meet the requirements of CSA Standard CAN/CSA Z94.3 "Industrial Eye and Face Protectors".

(2) Bifocal and trifocal glass lenses shall not be used where there is a danger of impact unless the lenses are worn behind impact-rated goggles or other eye protection acceptable to the minister.

(3) Where the use of polycarbonate or plastic prescription lenses is impracticable due to the conditions of the workplace and there is no danger of impact, a worker may use prescription lenses made of treated safety glass meeting the requirements of ANSI Standard Z87.1 "Practice for Occupational and Educational Eye and Face Protections".

Section 77 Contact lenses

77. Adequate precautions shall be taken where a hazardous substance or condition may adversely affect a worker wearing contact lenses.

Section 82 Flame resistant clothing

82. (1) Where a worker may be exposed to a flash fire or electrical equipment flashover, an employer shall ensure that the worker wears flame resistant outerwear and uses other protective equipment appropriate to the hazard.

(2) A worker shall ensure that clothing worn beneath flame resistant outerwear and against the skin is made of flame resistant fabrics or natural fibers that do not melt when exposed to heat.

Section 84 Respiratory protection

84. (1) When a worker is or may be exposed to an oxygen deficient atmosphere or harmful concentrations of air contaminants, atmospheric contamination shall be prevented to the extent practicable by accepted engineering controls and when engineering or other controls are not practicable, appropriate respiratory protection equipment shall be used in accordance with this section.

(2) Respiratory protection equipment shall be provided by an employer when the equipment is necessary to protect the health of a worker.

(3) An employer shall ensure that compressed air, compressed oxygen, liquid air and liquid oxygen used for respiration comply with the specifications of CSA Code Z180.1 Compressed Breathing Air and Systems .

(4) An employer shall ensure that compressed oxygen is not used in atmosphere-supplying respiratory equipment that has previously used compressed air.

(5) Access points shall display signs warning that respiratory protection equipment is required and naming the contaminant or hazard involved.

(6) An employer shall ensure that sufficient workers who are trained in rescue procedures are immediately available whenever workers are working in areas where an oxygen deficient atmosphere or hazardous contaminants may be present.

(7) A rescue worker referred to in subsection (6) shall have immediate access to appropriate breathing apparatus or other aids necessary to effect a rescue.

Section 85 Respiratory protection equipment

85. (1) An employer shall select and provide appropriate respiratory protection equipment based on the respiratory hazard to which a worker is exposed and workplace and user factors that affect the performance and reliability of the equipment.

(2) The equipment referred to in subsection (1) shall be certified by the National Institution of Occupational Safety and Health and used in compliance with the conditions of its certification.

(3) An employer shall identify and evaluate the respiratory hazards in the workplace, and the evaluation shall include an employee's potential exposure to respiratory hazards and an identification of the contaminant's chemical composition and physical state.

(4) Where an employer cannot identify the exposure referred to in subsection (3), the employer shall take immediate precautions to protect a worker from immediate danger.

(5) An employer shall not permit a respirator with a tight-fitting facepiece to be worn by an employee who has

(a) hair on the face or scalp that is likely to prevent effective sealing of the facepiece to the facial skin; or

(b) a condition that interferes with the face to facepiece seal or valve function.

(6) Where an employee wears corrective glasses or goggles or other personal protective equipment, the employer shall ensure that the equipment is worn in a manner that does not interfere with the seal of the facepiece to the face of the user.

(7) Where a tight-fitting respirator is used by an employee, an employer shall ensure that the employee performs a user seal check before each use.

Section 86 Inspection and maintenance of respiratory protection equipment

86. (1) Respiratory protection equipment that is issued for the exclusive use of an employee shall be cleaned and disinfected as often as necessary to maintain it in a sanitary condition.

(2) Respiratory protection equipment that is issued for the use of more than one employee shall be cleaned and disinfected before being worn by different individuals.

(3) An employer shall ensure that respiratory protection equipment is inspected as follows:

(a) equipment used in routine situations is inspected before each use and after cleaning;

(b) equipment maintained for use in emergency situations is inspected at least once monthly and according to the manufacturer's recommendations, and is checked for proper function before and after each use; and

(c) emergency escape only equipment is inspected before being carried into the workplace for use.

(4) Where an inspection conducted under subsection (3) reveals damage, the equipment shall be discarded.

Part VIII MACHINERY AND EQUIPMENT

Section 88 Safe machinery and equipment

88. (1) An employer shall ensure that each tool, machine and piece of equipment in the workplace is

(a) capable of safely performing the functions for which it is used; and

(b) selected, used and operated in accordance with

(i) the manufacturer's recommendations and instructions, where available,

(ii) safe work practices, and

(iii) the requirements of these regulations.

(2) Except as otherwise provided in these regulations, the installation, inspection, testing, repair, maintenance or modification of a tool, machine or piece of equipment shall be carried out

(a) in accordance with the manufacturer's instructions or a standard acceptable to the minister; or

(b) as specified by a professional engineer.

(3) Where equipment or a structure is dismantled in whole or in part and subsequently reassembled, it shall not be used until completely checked and found to be safe for operation or occupancy.

Section 89 General requirements

89. Except as otherwise provided in these regulations, an employer shall ensure that machinery and equipment is fitted with adequate safeguards that

(a) protect an employee from contact with hazardous power transmission parts;

(b) ensure that an employee cannot access a hazardous point of operation; and

(c) safely contain material ejected by the work process that could be hazardous to an employee.

Section 90 Standards

90. (1) The application, design, construction and use of safeguards, including an opening in a guard and the reach distance to a hazardous part, shall meet the requirements of CSA Standard Z432 "Safeguarding of Machinery" .

(2) A safeguard shall be capable of effectively performing its intended function.

Section 91 Guards

91. (1) A fixed guard shall not be modified to be readily removable without the use of tools.

(2) A guard shall be designed, where practicable, to allow lubrication and routine maintenance without the removal of the guard.

Section 92 Identifying unsafe equipment

92. An unsafe tool, machine or piece of equipment shall be removed from service and identified in a manner that ensures that it is not inadvertently returned to service until it has been made safe for use.

Section 94 Machinery location

94. A machine shall be located or safeguarded so that operation of the machine does not endanger a worker using a normal passage route about the workplace or operating an adjacent machine.

Section 95 Marking of hazards

95. A physical hazard shall be identified and marked in a manner that clearly identifies the hazard to an affected worker in accordance with a standard acceptable to the minister:

Section 98 Rotating hazards

98. Where a worker may be exposed to contact with rotating parts, such as friction drive, shafts, couplings and collars, set screws and bolts, keys and keyways, and projecting shaft ends, the parts shall be guarded.

Part XX FIRE PREVENTION AND CONTROL

Section 443 Fire protection

443. (1) The design and occupancy of structures and the provision of fire alarm and detection equipment and fire protection equipment, in places of employment, shall comply with the Fire Prevention Act, 1991 and an employer shall ensure that work is carried out according to the applicable provisions of that Act and the National Fire Code.

(2) Fire alarm and detection equipment and fire protection equipment shall be maintained according to the manufacturer's instructions and any other requirements of provincial legislation.

(3) An employer that has

(a) controlled products as defined in the Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS) Regulations, 2018 ;

(b) explosives;

(c) pesticides;

(d) radioactive material;

(e) consumer products; or

(f) hazardous waste

in quantities which may endanger fire-fighters at a workplace shall ensure that the local fire department is notified of the nature and location of the hazardous materials or substances and methods to be used in their safe handling.

(4) Subsection (3) does not apply to a workplace:

(a) where materials are kept on site for less than 5 days, where the employer ensures that an alternate and effective means of notification of the fire department, appropriate to the hazard, is in place in the event of a fire or other emergency; or

(b) which is not within the service area of a fire department.

[S.N.L. 2019, c. 8, s. 20]

Section 444 Fire and explosion

444. (1) Where a worker is employed in or about a bilge, tank, compartment or cargo space of marine equipment or in an area where there is a possibility of the presence of a volatile or flammable substance, gas or vapour, an employer shall institute a system of inspections and tests to determine the presence of that substance, gas or vapour before work is commenced.

(2) Where a volatile or flammable substance, gas or vapour is present or arises from the work process, the hazard shall be removed or controlled by ventilation or other effective means.

(3) Where work or manufacturing processes involve the use of a flammable liquid, vapour or gas, the concentration of the liquid, vapour or gas in the work area shall be maintained below the lower explosive limit (LEL) of the substance involved.

(4) A container used to carry, transfer, or store a flammable solvent shall meet the requirements of the CSA Standards and shall be electrically grounded or bonded while the contents are transferred from one container to another.

(5) Waste material contaminated with a solvent, oil, grease, paint or other flammable substance shall be placed in covered metal containers before disposal and shall not be stored in work areas.

(6) Where a volatile or flammable substance, gas or vapour is present, or arises out of material or equipment or from a work process, existing or potential sources of ignition shall be controlled or eliminated.

(7) For the purpose of subsection (6), a source of ignition includes an open flame, spark-producing mechanical equipment, welding and cutting processes, smoking, static discharge, electrical equipment or an installation that is not approved for hazardous locations, as specified by the Canadian Electrical Code.

(8) Where work involves more than one employer, a principal contractor shall ensure that sources of ignition resulting from the work of one employer are eliminated or adequately controlled where a flammable gas or a flammable liquid is handled, used or stored by another employer.

Section 448 Hot work

448. Fire suppression equipment shall be readily available and appropriate to the potential loss exposure at a location where hot work takes place.

Part XXI WELDING, BURNING AND CUTTING OPERATIONS

Section 449 Gas welding and burning

449. (1) Welding, cutting, and similar processes shall be carried out according to the requirements of

(a) CSA Standard W117.2 in "Safety in Welding, Cutting and Allied Processes" or another standard acceptable to the minister ;

(b) the manufacturer's instructions and recommendations for the equipment being used; and

(c) the applicable requirements of these regulations.

(2) Cylinders, piping and fittings of compressed and liquefied-gas systems shall be located or protected in a manner that prevents physical damage to them.

(3) A worker shall prevent a spark or flame from coming into contact with a cylinder, regulator or hose of a compressed-gas system and charged gas cylinders shall be protected from a source of heat in excess of 54.44Celsius.

(4) Before gas-welding or burning equipment is put into use, a worker shall ensure that parts are free from defects, leaks or oil and grease and only standard fittings, designed and manufactured for the specific compressed gas service shall be used.

(5) A regulator or an automatic reducing valve of welding equipment shall only be used for the gas for which it was designed.

Section 450 Compressed gas cylinders

450. (1) A compressed gas cylinder

(a) shall be

(i) secured during storage, transportation or use, and

(ii) stored, transported and used only in accordance with the manufacturer's instructions, applicable CSA and NFPA standards and applicable legislation; and

(b) shall not be hoisted by slings, dropped or subjected to impact.

(2) A cylinder valve shall be closed and a hose drained when work is finished or when a cylinder is empty, and a valve protection cover shall be kept in position when a cylinder is not connected for use.

Section 451 Oxygen

451. A worker shall not

(a) permit oil or grease to contact an oxygen cylinder, valve, regulator or other fitting; or

(b) handle an oxygen cylinder or apparatus with oily or greasy hands or gloves.

Section 452 Radiation protection

452. (1) Arc welding shall not be carried out unless a worker who may be exposed to radiation from the arc flash is protected by an adequate screen, curtain or partition or wears suitable eye protection.

(2) A screen, curtain or partition near an arc welding operation shall be made of or treated with a flame-resistant material or coating, and have a nonreflective surface finish.

Section 453 Burning and welding

453. (1) Burning, welding or other hot work shall not be done in an area where there is a likelihood of the presence of flammable substances until

(a) tests have been done to ensure that work may be safely performed; and

(b) suitable procedures have been adopted to ensure that all existing or potential sources of ignition have been eliminated or effectively controlled.

(2) Where testing procedures are used, tests shall be conducted at intervals to ensure the continuing safety of workers.

(3) Burning, welding or cutting shall not be done where there is a danger of extreme heat coming into contact with a concrete surface unless that surface is protected from the source of heat.

(4) Suitable safety devices to prevent reverse gas flow and to arrest a flashback shall be installed according to the manufacturer's instructions on each hose in an oxygen system between the torch and the regulator.

Section 454 Ventilation

454. Effective local exhaust ventilation shall be used at a fixed work station to minimize worker exposure to harmful air contaminants produced by welding, burning or soldering.

Section 455 Coatings on metals

455. A coating on metal which could emit harmful contaminants, including lead, chromium, organic materials, or toxic combustion products shall be removed from the base metal, whenever practicable, before welding or cutting.

Section 456 Receptacles for stubs

456. Receptacles for electrode stubs shall be provided and used.

Section 457 Respiratory protection

457. Respiratory protective equipment shall be provided and worn where an effective means of natural, mechanical or local exhaust ventilation is not practicable.

Part XXVII CONFINED SPACE ENTRY

Section 511 Confined space entry

511. (1) An employer shall perform an assessment of the work area to determine whether it contains a confined space.

(2) For the purpose of this Part, "confined space" means an enclosed or partially enclosed space that

(a) is not designed or intended for human occupancy except for the purpose of performing work;

(b) has restricted means of access and egress; and

(c) may become hazardous to a person entering it as a result of

(i) its design, construction, location or atmosphere,

(ii) the materials or substances in it, or

(iii) any other conditions relating to it.

(3) A worker shall not work in a confined space after January 1, 2013 unless he or she has completed a confined space entry program prescribed by the commission.

(4) An employer shall inform a worker who may have to work in a confined space of a hazard by posting signs or other equally effective means of advising of the existence of and dangers posed by confined spaces.

Section 512 Corrective precautions

512. (1) Upon first entering a confined space, a worker shall assume the space is hazardous until the contrary is demonstrated.

(2) An employer shall ensure that a worker does not enter a confined space until

(a) an adequate assessment of the hazards related to the confined space has been carried out;

(b) a source containing a hazardous substance leading to the confined space is safely and completely blocked off or disconnected;

(c) a test required under subsection (11) has been completed;

(d) the worker is qualified to safely enter and perform duties within the confined space;

(e) a written work permit documenting the tests and safety precautions has been completed; and

(f) a set of written safe work procedures has been developed and a worker has been instructed in these procedures.

(3) The assessment referred to in paragraph (2)(a) shall be recorded in writing and shall consider, with respect to each confined space,

(a) the hazards that may exist due to the design, construction, location, use or contents of the confined space; and

(b) the hazards that may develop while work is done inside the confined space.

(4) The record of the assessment may be incorporated into an entry permit.

(5) Where 2 or more confined spaces are of similar construction and present the same hazards, their assessments may be recorded in a single document, but each confined space shall be clearly identified in the assessment.

(6) The employer shall appoint a person with adequate knowledge, training and experience to carry out the assessment and shall maintain a record containing details of the person's knowledge, training and experience.

(7) The assessment shall contain the name of the person who carries out the assessment.

(8) The person shall sign and date the assessment and provide it to the employer.

(9) On request, the employer shall provide copies of the assessment and of the record to

(a) the joint health and safety committee or the health and safety representative; or

(b) every worker who performs work to which the assessment relates, where the workplace has no joint health and safety committee or health and safety representative.

(10) The employer shall ensure that the assessment is reviewed as often as necessary to ensure that the assessment referred to in paragraph (2)(a) remains current.

(11) Appropriate tests for harmful vapours, gasses, fumes, mists, dusts or explosive substances and oxygen deficiency shall be made and recorded

(a) before entry into the confined space;

(b) after an interruption in the work procedures; and

(c) at appropriate intervals.

(12) Where a test made under subsection (11) indicates an unsafe condition, the confined space shall be ventilated or cleaned or both and periodically retested to ensure that:

(a) the oxygen content is between 20% and 22%;

(b) the concentration of flammable substances is maintained below 10% of the lower explosive limit (LEL) of that substance or substances; and

(c) a worker's exposure to harmful substances is maintained at acceptable levels in accordance the TLVs established by ACGIH.

(13) Where a test under subsection (11) indicates the presence of a harmful or explosive substance and it is not feasible to provide a safe respirable atmosphere, an employer shall ensure that

(a) a worker entering the confined space is provided with and wears respiratory and personal protective equipment appropriate to the hazards likely to be encountered; and

(b) where a flammable or explosive gas or liquid is present all sources of ignition are controlled or eliminated.

(14) Where control measures referred to in subsection (13) cannot be implemented, a worker shall leave the confined space.

(15) Tests made under in subsection (11) shall be performed by a person who has been adequately trained in the proper use of testing and monitoring equipment.

(16) Equipment used in testing and monitoring shall be calibrated and monitored according to the manufacturer's instructions.

(17) The completed permit referred to in paragraph (2)(e) shall be made available at the time of entry to all authorized personnel by posting it at the entry portal or by another effective means.

Section 513 Work procedures

513. (1) An employer shall ensure that a worker who is required or permitted to enter a confined space in which a harmful atmosphere exists or may develop or where he or she may become entrapped by material

(a) wears appropriate retrieval equipment which would keep the worker in a position to be rescued; and

(b) has a life-line attached to the retrieval equipment which is tended at all times by a person, stationed outside the entrance to the confined space who shall be equipped for and capable of effecting rescue

and the employer shall prevent entanglement of life-lines and other equipment where one or more workers enter the confined space.

(2) Notwithstanding subsection (1), the use of a lifeline is not required where an obstruction or other condition makes its use impractical or unsafe but, in that case, an employer shall implement procedures to ensure the safety of the worker.

(3) Where a worker is required to enter a confined space his or her employer shall ensure that an attendant

(a) is assigned the worker;

(b) is stationed outside and near

(i) the entrance to the confined space, or

(ii) where there is more than one entrance to the confined space, the one that best allows the attendant to perform his or her duties under subsection (4);

(c) is in continuous communication with the worker using the means of communication described in the relevant safe work procedure; and

(d) is provided with a device for summoning an adequate rescue response.

(4) An attendant shall not enter a confined space and shall, in accordance with the required safe work procedure,

(a) monitor the safety of the worker in the confined space;

(b) provide assistance to him or her; and

(c) summon an adequate rescue response where one is required.

Section 514 Entry into confined space

514. A confined space shall be entered only where

(a) the opening for entry and exit is sufficient to allow safe passage of a person wearing personal protective equipment;

(b) mechanical equipment in the confined space is

(i) disconnected from its power source, and

(ii) locked out and tagged;

(c) pipes and other supply lines whose contents are likely to create a hazard are blanked off;

(d) measures have been taken to ensure that, where appropriate, the confined space is continuously ventilated;

(e) liquid in which a person may drown or a free-flowing solid in which a person may become entrapped has been removed from the confined space;

(f) adequate explosion-proof illumination is provided where appropriate; and

(g) adequate barriers are erected to prohibit unauthorized entry.

Section 515 Explosives or flammable atmosphere

515. An employer shall ensure that a worker does not enter or remain in a confined space that contains or is likely to contain an explosive or flammable gas or vapour, unless

(a) the worker is performing only inspection, work that does not produce a source of ignition and, in the case of an explosive or flammable gas or vapour, the atmospheric concentration is less than 25% of its lower explosive limit, as determined by a combustible gas measuring instrument;

(b) the worker is performing only cold work and, in the case of an explosive or flammable gas or vapour, the atmospheric concentration is less than 10% of its lower explosive limit as determined by combustible gas instruments; or

(c) the worker is performing hot work and all of the following conditions are satisfied:

(i) in the case of an explosive or flammable gas or vapour, the atmospheric concentration is less than 5% of its lower explosive limit, as determined by a combustible gas instrument,

(ii) the atmosphere in the confined space does not contain, and is not likely to contain while a worker is inside, an oxygen content greater than 23%,

(iii) the atmosphere in the confined space is monitored continuously,

(iv) the entry permit includes adequate provisions for hot work and corresponding control measures, and

(v) an adequate alarm system and exit procedures are provided to ensure that workers have adequate warning and are able to exit the confined space safely where either or both of the following occur, in the case of an explosive or flammable gas or vapour

(A) the atmospheric concentration exceeds 5% of its lower explosive limit, or

(B) the oxygen content of the atmosphere exceeds 23% by volume.

Section 516 Rescue from confined space

516. An employer shall ensure that emergency rescue procedures are established and followed where workers are trained in the event of an accident or other emergency in or near the confined space, including immediate evacuation of the confined space.

Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS) Regulations, 2018
C.N.L.R. 34/18

Section 2 Definitions

2. In these regulations

(a) "bulk shipment" means a shipment of a hazardous product that is contained, without intermediate containment or intermediate packaging, in

(i) a vessel that has a water capacity equal to or greater than 450 litres,

(ii) a freight container, a road vehicle, a railway vehicle or a portable tank,

(iii) the hold of a ship, or

(iv) a pipeline;

(b) "CAS registry number" means the identification number assigned to a chemical by the Chemical Abstracts Service, a division of the American Chemical Society;

(c) "category" includes a subcategory;

(d) "container" includes a bag, barrel, bottle, box, can, cylinder, drum, storage tank or similar package or receptacle;

(e) "education" means the delivery of general information to workers including information applicable to more than one workplace or job;

(f) "fugitive emission" means a gas, liquid, solid, vapour, fume, mist, fog or dust that escapes from process equipment or from emission control equipment or from a product to which workers may be readily exposed;

(g) "hazard information" means information on the proper and safe use, storage and handling of a hazardous product and includes information relating to its health and physical hazards;

(h) "hazardous product" means a product, material, mixture or substance classified by the regulations made under subsection 15(1) of the Hazardous Products Act (Canada) in a category of a hazard class listed in Schedule 2 of that Act;

(i) " Hazardous Products Regulations " means the Hazardous Products Regulations under the Hazardous Products Act (Canada) ;

(j) "hazardous waste" means a hazardous product in the workplace that is acquired or generated for recycling or recovery or is intended for disposal;

(k) "health professional" means

(i) a physician who is registered and entitled under the laws of a province to practise medicine and who is practising medicine under those laws in that province, and

(ii) a nurse who is registered or licensed and entitled under the laws of a province to practise nursing and who is practising nursing under those laws in that province;

(l) "label" means written, printed or graphic information elements relating to a hazardous product which are designed to be affixed to, printed on or attached to the hazardous product or the container in which the hazardous product is packaged;

(m) "laboratory sample" means a sample of a hazardous product packaged in a container that contains less than 10 kilograms of the hazardous product and is intended solely to be tested in a laboratory but does not include a sample that is to be used

(i) by the laboratory for testing other products, materials, mixtures or substances, or

(ii) for education or demonstration purposes;

(n) "manufactured article" means an article that

(i) is formed to a specific shape or design during manufacture, the intended use of which when in that form is dependent in whole or in part on its shape or design, and

(ii) when being installed, if the intended use of the article requires it to be installed, and under normal conditions of use, will not release or otherwise cause a person to be exposed to a hazardous product;

(o) "proceedings" has the same meaning as in subsection 19(3) of the Hazardous Materials Information Review Act (Canada) ;

(p) "product identifier" means, in respect of a hazardous product, the brand name, chemical name, common name, generic name or trade name;

(q) "readily available" means

(i) present in an appropriate place that is known to the workers,

(ii) accessible to workers at all times, and

(iii) in the form of either a physical copy that can be handled or an electronic copy that is easily available in hard copy to workers likely to be exposed to a hazardous product;

(r) "research and development" means a systematic investigation or search carried out in a field of science or technology by means of experiment or analysis, other than the disclosure of source of toxicological data under section 25;

(s) "safety data sheet" means a document that contains the headings required under the regulations made under subsection 15(1) of the Hazardous Products Act (Canada) and information about a hazardous product, including information related to the hazards associated with the use, storage or handling of the hazardous product in the workplace;

(t) "significant new data" means new data regarding the hazard presented by a hazardous product that changes its classification in a category of a hazard class or results in its classification in another hazard class, or changes the ways to protect against the hazard presented by the hazardous product;

(u) "supplier label" means a label provided by a supplier that contains information elements as required by the Hazardous Products Act (Canada)

(v) "supplier safety data sheet" means a safety data sheet provided by a supplier that contains information elements as required by the Hazardous Products Act (Canada) ;

(w) "training" refers to the delivery of workplace and job specific information to workers; and

(x) "workplace label" means a label which discloses

(i) a product identifier which is identical to that found on the safety data sheet of the corresponding hazardous product,

(ii) information for the safe handling (ii) information for the safe handling of the hazardous product which is conveyed in a manner appropriate to the workplace, and

(iii) that a safety data sheet for the hazardous product, where one has been obtained from a supplier or prepared by the employer, is available.