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Key Amendments to the BC Occupational Health & Safety Regulation

Date: 12th April 2017

As well as updates pertaining to Asbestos, WorkSafeBC announced a number of amendments to the British Columbia Occupational Health & Safety Regulation.   Please see this summary of changes and for more information visit here.

Combustible and Flammable Liquids

✓   Update to Section 1.1

  • Definitions updated to remove outdated WHMIS 1988 terms
  • The flashpoint temperature criteria will remain the same and continue to be consistent with BC Fire Code definiti

Area Guards and Handrails

✓   New subsection in section 4.56

  • Easier to have compliant movable work platforms and scaffolds aligned with CSA and ANSI standards.

Environmental Tobacco Smoke and E-Cigarette Vapour

✓   Update to sections 4.80.1, 4.81, 4.82 & 28.9

  • Now include e-cigarette vapour

✓   No smoking buffer zone increased from 3 meters to 6 meters

  • Effective since 01-Sep-16
  • Regulation now brought into alignment

Combustible or Flammable Air Contaminants

✓   Update to section 5.71 (2) Chemical Agents and Biological Agents

  • Addition of combustible air contaminants
  • Ensures compliance with BC Electrical Code for related equipment contacting the airstream of a ventilation system

Inventory of Asbestos Containing Materials

✓   Update to section 6.4-6.66 & 6.32 Substance Specific Requirements

  • Makes it clear that both Owner and Worksite are responsible;
  • Adds obligation for Owner to ensure asbestos inventories are completed;
  • Clarity on information required for inventories and retention of inventory rec


✓   Expansion of Sections 6.58-6.69

  • Clearer more detailed instructions on handling of lead containing products and prevention of worker exposure;
  • Allow a qualified person to determine whether peer-reviewed research exposure data, or previous exposure monitoring data, may be used to estimate worker exposure during equivalent work operations — either to evaluate the effectiveness of existing controls or to develop effective control

Rock Dust Silica

✓   Updates to Part 6

  • New heading, indicating the provisions apply to respirable crystalline silica (RCS) and rock dust;
  • Sections 6.110 to 6.112 being repealed and replaced with new provisions designed to protect workers from risks of RCS;
  • Sections 6.113 to 6.115 will be maintained with minor edits;
  • Changes will  allow  a  qualified  person  to  determine  whether  peer-reviewed research exposure data, or previous exposure monitoring data, may be used to estimate worker exposure during equivalent work operations — either to evaluate the effectiveness of existing controls or to develop effective control

Chassis dynamometer

✓   Addition to section 12.83.1

  • Safeguarding requirements  for  the  testing  of  motor  vehicles  on  chassis dynamomet


✓   Addition to Section 13.11

  • Require scaffolds that support powered hoists or cranes be constructed, installed, and used according to a professional engineer’s instructions

Cranes and hoists

✓   Update to Part 14

  • Unnecessary definitions removed from Section 4.1;
  • Addition of one line of text to 14.2(8) to exclude light duty portable material hoists from the requirement to meet the CSA Standard;
  • Changes to sections 14.5 and 14.11 clarify the rated capacity of cranes, hoists, and monorail cranes;
  • o Changes to section 14.81 incorporate the Prevention Manual policy on how testing should be performed for limit and warning devices on tower c

Notice of Project for Construction

✓   Amendments expand the scope of the NOP submission responsibility to also include employers, in addition to owners and prime contractors;

✓   The notice period to submit an NOP to WorkSafeBC has increased from 24 to 48 hours before the work activity begins at the worksite;

✓   The amendments require that information be resubmitted to WorkSafeBC as soon as possible if any of the information in the NOP changes significantly.

Underground Supervisors

✓   Revision of Section 22.12 (1) and (2)

  • clarity to what the role of the underground supervisor is, and how to be considered qualified for the job.

Saw Chain Shot

✓   Addition of Section 26.13.4

  • Provides details on safety controls for saw chain

Additional Amendments

Joint Health and Safety Committee Regulation Changes (In Force Apr 3)

As of April 3 2017 there were changes to the Joint Health and Safety Committee requirements, which involved changes to:

✓    Section 3.26

  • Annual Evaluation to assess the committee’s effectiveness

✓   Section 3.27

  • Mandatory  minimum   training   and   education   for   the   committee   and representatives

✓   Section 3.28

  • Clarifies  the   meaning   of   “participation”   in   section   174   of   the   Workers Compensation Act.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding these amendments, please feel free to contact us or visit the WSBC site.

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