Tree Frog Forestry News

Category Archives: Health & Safety

Health & Safety

Health and safety year in review 2018

By Jeremy Warning
Canadian Occupational Safety Magazine
December 17, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada

Jeremy Warning

This year saw significant developments in occupational health and safety law across Canada. …Employers must now deal with the myriad of issues accompanying the legalization of recreational cannabis. …In West Fraser Mills Ltd. v British Columbia, the Supreme Court of Canada found that a site owner could be penalized under British Columbia’s Workers Compensation Act. …The majority… concluded that the involved provision of the OHS Regulation was a reasonable exercise of the power conferred by the act. It found that an owners’ duties are not limited to those set out in the Workers Compensation Act as the involved provision of the OHS Regulation is a “natural extension” of the owner’s Workers Compensation Board duty to ensure compliance. The majority also held that West Fraser Mills was an “employer” for the act’s purposes. The upshot is that the penalty section of the act may be applied broadly.

Read More

Dangers of logging, forestry not worth the risk: Report

Canadian Occupational Safety Magazine
November 22, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada

An inaugural report by personal finance comparison website Finder Canada has ranked 18 industries in terms of their risk and reward to find the most dangerous jobs and whether or not their salaries are worth the risk. Logging and forestry was found to be the most dangerous industry across Canada, with 11 fatalities and 1,324 claims, and only 48,100 people in the industry (2.8 per cent of employees injured or killed). Not only was it found to be the most dangerous industry, but it was also the least rewarding in terms of risk and reward, with an average weekly salary of $1,109, yielding a Finder job score of just 2.2. … “…this study puts into context the value of that risk and whether or not people are adequately compensated for the risk their job demands,” said Michelle Hutchison, money expert at Finder.com.

Read More

Combustible Dust Fires and Explosions: Recent Data and Lessons Learned

By Chris Cloney
Chemical Engineering
November 1, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada

Fires and explosions in facilities that handle combustible dust remain an ongoing focus of process safety efforts across many areas of the chemical process industries (CPI). But how many dust-related safety incidents occur each year? This question is a major driver behind the formation of the Combustible Dust Incident Database. Created in 2016, the CDID features a twice-yearly report on fires and explosions having to do with combustible dusts….The information collected… is now helping to determine trends and tendencies in the materials, industries and equipment involved with these hazards. …The CSB report shows an increasing trend in the number of combustible-dust incidents, injuries and fatalities, with the numbers almost doubling during the 20-year period from 1980 to 2001.

Read More

Fatigue responsible for 2017 occurrence in which a BC tug boat made bottom contact

By Transportation Safety Board of Canada
Cision Newswire
January 10, 2019
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada, Canada West

VANCOUVER – Today, the Transportation Safety Board of Canada released its investigation report into a July 2017 occurrence during which the tug Ocean Monarch made bottom contact while transiting the Princess Royal Channel south of Kitimat, British Columbia. The report underlines the need to effectively manage the risk of fatigue in the marine industry. On 9 July 2017… the tug Ocean Monarch, with three crew members on board, made bottom contact while towing the loaded cement barge Evco No. 15. No pollution or injuries were reported, but the tug’s hull, starboard propeller and nozzle were damaged. …The investigation determined that the mate, alone on watchkeeping duties, fell asleep while the tug and barge transited on autopilot through the channel’s confined waters. …The investigation also found that the tug’s operator had no strategies in place to mitigate crew fatigue, despite a previous occurrence in 2011 where fatigue played a role.

Read More

Worksafe BC says combination of human and manufacturer error led to Domtar worker’s death

By James Peters
CFJC Today
December 14, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada, Canada West

KAMLOOPS — Worksafe BC says a combination of human error and manufacturer’s mistake led to an accident that killed a Domtar employee last June. The accident on June 29, 2017 killed a crane operator and seriously injured another worker. A redacted incident investigation report released today (Dec. 14) refers to the fatality victim as ‘Operator 1’, but Unifor has identified the man as 57-year-old Jim MacLeod. The report says MacLeod and his co-worker were standing on a crane chassis, attempting to stow a jib — an extension to the boom of a crane — when the jib fell. The huge piece of equipment struck both men, causing them to fall more than two metres off the crane chassis and killing MacLeod. Worksafe’s report says the accident happened because the jib was not connected to the boom of the crane, and lists three contributing factors to the accident.

Read More

Safety board issues letters over rail crash that killed three Vancouver Island workers

The Canadian Press in the Province
December 12, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada, Canada West

RICHMOND, B.C. — The Transportation Safety Board has issued rail-safety advisories involving a crash in April of last year. A WorksafeBC report issued in October said decaying railway ties and the failure of a safety mechanism allowed rail cars at a Western Forest Products reload centre to run uncontrolled and hit two work equipment vehicles with the five men aboard. The board’s report issued Wednesday adds to the conclusion, saying the 11 cars loaded with logs rolled away after a locking device between the cars inadvertently released. The report also says a safety device meant to derail the runaway cars failed to work because the rail ties were deteriorating and the device hadn’t been adequately secured. …It says another advisory letter went to B.C.’s Ministry of Transportation saying it may want to review how the derail devices are installed, maintained and inspected on properties operated by Western Forest Products.

Read More

Unsuccessful coupling between rail cars and failure of a derail protection device led to April 2017 uncontrolled movement, collision and fatal derailment near Woss, BC

Transportation Safety Board of Canada
December 12, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada, Canada West

Richmond, BC – Today, the Transportation Safety Board of Canada released its investigation report into a fatal derailment that involved an uncontrolled movement of rail cars and a subsequent collision with engineering working equipment in April 2017 near Woss, British Columbia. Although the occurrence railway company was under provincial jurisdiction, the TSB conducted the investigation at the request of the British Columbia Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure. On the morning of 20 April 2017, a cut of 11 cars loaded with logs rolled uncontrolled out of the Woss Reload Centre, operated by Western Forest Products, near Woss, British Columbia.

Read More

Revelstoke man honoured for saving friend’s life (AND good info on CPR)

BC Local News
December 1, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada, Canada West

…Three years ago, Russell Davies and his friend Shawn Sanders were working on Davies’ property when Davies fell to the ground from a cardiac arrest. “He just went over into a slump. I rolled him over onto his back and he was gone. Eyes wide open. Boom. Basically all white,” says Sanders. …According to the CPR Certification HQ website, the chances of a victim surviving decreases seven per cent every minute CPR is not administered. …The 911 operator gave Sanders the rhythm for CPR to follow. Incidentally, it’s the same beat for the song Stayin’ Alive by the Bee Gees. …“I hadn’t had a first aid course in 15 years. Thank god for 911,” says Sanders. …Amazingly, Davies made a full recovery. …The BC Ambulance Service in Revelstoke presented Sanders with the Vital Link Award, for citizens who are involved in saving a life through successful CPR efforts.

Read More

BC Forest Safety Council December News

BC Forest Safety Council
November 26, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada, Canada West

Time to tell us what you think—and win a gift card! Did you know: Forest Safety News (FSN) has been produced for five years? That’s 30 editions, either 16 or 20 pages each. One person works on FSN as part of their role at the BC Forest Safety Council (BCFSC). All other contributions are from industry volunteer writers/ photographers. Every BCFSC department provides input…. Forest Safety News was introduced five years ago as a means to share regular safety-related information with SAFE certified companies and workers in the forestry industry. It’s time for you to tell us what you think and what you’d like to see in future editions. Please click here for the online survey. The goal is to help support continuous improvement in safety knowledge and performance, and to reflect our industry’s social license to operate sustainably safe, innovative and respected companies

Read More

Vancouver Island Safety Conference: Managing Risk—empowering good decisions

BC Forest Safety Council
September 29, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada, Canada West

Geraldine Manson, Snuneymuxw Elder, and Elder in Residence at Vancouver Island University, welcomed delegates at the 13th annual Vancouver Island Safety Conference to the traditional, unceded territory of the Snuneymuxw First Nation. …Rob Moonen, CEO of the BC Forest Safety Council (BCFSC), said he wanted to provide delegates with information about some of the industry accomplishments and some of the challenges in safety. Rob said the overall injury rate for harvesting in 2017 was the second lowest on record outside of 2009 (year of financial crisis and record low harvest levels). …Speaking from the heart, Minister Bains shared how he had worked at a Canfor sawmill and understood the many is- sues industry faces. He said that there had been both challenges and opportunities about health and safety at his time at the mill.

Read More

Pulp mills likely source of haze

The Prince George Citizen
November 22, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada, Canada West

The pulp mills are the likely source of the haze that settled over the Bowl area this morning, according to University of Northern British Columbia professor Peter Jackson. Jackson noted a light easterly wind and a spike in the reading for particulate matter at the Plaza 400 monitoring station, which jumped from about 17 micrograms per cubic metre at 10 a.m. to 61 at 11 a.m. “The high levels are most likely from the pulp mill area – a phenomena called ‘fumigation’ where there is a spike in air pollution levels in mid-late morning when the nocturnal inversion begins to break down and pollution-rich air mixes downward to the surface,” he said in an email shortly before noon. …B.C. Ministry of Environment air quality meteorologist Gail Roth confirmed Jackson’s assessment.

Read More

Worker buried in sawdust in a shavings bin at West Fraser B.C. Sawmill

By Max Winkelman
Castlegar News
November 22, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada, Canada West

A worker at the Chasm Sawmill division of West Fraser was buried to about head or chest depth in a wood shavings bin area and needed to be rescued, according to a WorkSafeBC report. “A worker performing clean up during maintenance type work inside a bin approximately 50 to 80 feet high, 30 feet wide, was engulfed by sawdust and/or wood shavings type recovery waste product,” according to the report. “The need for rescue did arise and the lone worker was engulfed and unable to self-rescue.” …West Fraser has since developed and performed a risk assessment, developed a safe work procedure for entering the shavings bin and as of Nov. 21 planned an emergency drill for confined space and/or enclosed space within the next 30 days.

Read More

Formalizing incident investigations in the pellet industry

By Gordon Murray
Canadian Biomass Magazine
November 22, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada, Canada West
The Wood Pellet Association of Canada (WPAC) held a workshop on conducting incident investigations at the Westin Vancouver Airport Hotel. …This workshop was part of the collaboration between WPAC and WorkSafeBC on implementing Process Safety Management (PSM) in the wood pellet industry. PSM focuses on preventing high-impact process catastrophes: fires, explosions, accidental chemical releases, and structural collapses. …During the workshop, participants prepared mock incident investigation reports for several real-life incidents. This enabled participants to analyze and discuss the root causes of these incidents and to recommend corrective actions to prevent their reoccurrence.

Read More

Preparing for winter driving

BC Forest Safety Council
October 15, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada, Canada West

Whether you are hauling logs, driving to and from the bush to operate a machine or conducting forest management activities, preparing for winter driving conditions is a must. …Year after year, incident data provided by log hauling contractors to the Trucking and Harvesting Advisory Group (TAG) shows increased incidents throughout the winter months. This is not surprising given the challenging conditions, but making the decision to drive to the conditions and chain up where required can reduce the risk of an incident. There is a safe speed for every load and road condition, including not going at all!  The Shift into Winter driving safety alliance has released updated information for all commercial carriers in all industries on “winterizing your safety plan”. The brochure includes employer responsibilities, dispatch/supervisor duties, drivers’ responsibilities, proper vehicle preparation and maintenance, pre-trip inspections as well as the roll of joint health and safety committees or worker representatives.

Read More

Loggers pull door off wreckage to get to Cariboo crash victim

BC Local News
November 13, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada, Canada West

Witnesses say a log truck driver is lucky to be alive after his truck crashed on Highway 20 Tuesday. “We called in for a Medevac and landed it on the highway,” said Mike Elvin, who lives at the Old Riske Creek School House. “It’s all still in place as we speak. We got the highway all cleaned off but there are logs on each side of the road, the truck’s completely dismantled inside and it’s an absolute miracle the man’s alive.” Elvin said it was just before noon when he heard a ‘massive bang,’ looked out and saw a logging truck was flipped upside down. “I’m right in front of where the accident took place. It blew a front tire and went off into the ditch. We had logs scattered across the highway and it took out the gates and fences out front of our place.”

Read More

Investigation into northern B.C. bus crash underway but all injured released from hospital

Canadian Press in Vancouver Sun
November 2, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada, Canada West

RCMP investigators say weather and a slippery road were possibly factors in a bus crash north of Prince George that put 18 people to hospital. RCMP Cpl. Madonna Saunderson says there’s nothing to suggest the driver was impaired or did anything wrong before the bus slid into a ditch Thursday on snow-covered Highway 97. The bus chartered by forest products company Canfor flipped partially on its side with 30 employees travelling from Prince George to the Polar Sawmill in Bear Lake. Northern Health spokeswoman Eryn Collins says 11 people had minor injuries and the rest were more seriously hurt but everyone has since been sent home from hospital. Canfor spokeswoman Michelle Ward says every worker had been released from hospital by 10 p.m., and operations at the Polar mill have not been affected.

Read More

Four seriously injured in Prince George area bus crash, 12 others stable

The Canadian Press in the Vancouver Sun
November 1, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada, Canada West

A bus carrying workers to a sawmill crashed Thursday afternoon north of Prince George, sending 16 people to hospital, three of them in critical condition. B.C. Emergency Health Services says one person was in serious condition and 12 others were stable. Sixteen others were uninjured and taken back to Prince George by bus, said Libby Brown of EHS. …Forest products company Canfor said the bus was chartered by them and was transporting employees from Prince George to its Polar Sawmill when it was involved in an accident. “The accident is currently under investigation by the local authorities,” Michelle Ward, director of corporate communications, said in a statement. “Our focus is on supporting our injured employees and their families.”

Read More

WorkSafeBC report cites safety failures in 2017 train derailment that killed three workers

By Dirk Meissner
The Canadian Press in The Globe and Mail
October 25, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada, Canada West

Decaying railroad ties and the failure of a safety mechanism to prevent a train derailment are cited in a report by British Columbia’s workers’ safety agency as factors in a crash that killed three people and injured two others. The accident in April 2017 happened on the now-abandoned Western Forest Products rail line at Woss. …“Besides the deficiencies related to the ties, WorkSafeBC investigators also found that an insufficient number of spikes were used to fasten the failed derail to the ties,” the report says. …Western Forest Products Inc., which was not available for comment, was cited with one violation of the Workers Compensation Act for the failure to ensure the health and safety of its workers. …The Transportation Safety Board is also investigating the crash.

Read More

Host of errors blamed in Woss derailment that claimed 3 lives

By Katie DeRosa
Victoria Times Colonist
October 25, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada, Canada West

Faulty equipment and a host of mechanical errors caused the 2017 logging train derailment in Woss that killed three people and injured two, WorkSafe B.C. has found. …On April 20, 2017, a faulty coupler, the mechanism that connects rail cars, caused 11 cars loaded with logs to detach and roll freely toward the community of Woss. …The train would have derailed well before it reached the maintenance crew, but a derail mechanism wasn’t working properly. …However, the derail device was attached to old rail ties that had rotted away due to wet conditions. The derail device, instead of diverting the cars, came free when it was hit by the first set of wheels, making it useless. As a result, the rest of the wheels stayed on the tracks and the rail cars barrelled toward the maintenance crew. …In a statement Tuesday, Western Forest Products said: “The safety and security of our employees has and always will be our number one priority.

Read More

Faulty coupling cited as cause of fatal 2017 logging train derailment in Woss

By Alistair Taylor
The Comox Valley Record
October 24, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada, Canada West

Eleven rail cars loaded with logs rolled unrestrained towards a crew of five workers sitting unsuspectingly in a “speeder” and a backhoe near Woss on April 20, 2017. …Three workers, Roland Gaudet, Jacob Galeazzi and Clement Reti were killed and two were seriously injured, a WorkSafeBC report into the incident says. The report was released after a Freedom of Information request by the Victoria Times-Colonist. The cause of the crash was determined to be faulty coupler components failing to engage on a car attached to a braked rail car that anchored the string of 12 cars. That coupling failed, releasing the 11 cars connected to it. In addition, a safety mechanism called a derail then failed to stop the free-rolling cars. …The incident happened on Western Forest Products’ Englewood Railway at Woss.

Read More

WorkSafeBC raising awareness about impairment in the workplace

WorkSafeBC
October 16, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada, Canada West

Richmond, B.C. — WorkSafeBC is launching an awareness campaign to educate employers and workers about impairment in the workplace, as the legalization of recreational cannabis takes effect October 17. “Impairment in the workplace isn’t a new issue in B.C., but it’s become top of mind as cannabis becomes legal for recreational use,” said Tom Brocklehurst, Director of Prevention Practices and Quality for WorkSafeBC. “We’re reaching out to employers and workers to remind them that they share responsibility for managing impairment in the workplace.” …WorkSafeBC is advising employers to develop policies and procedures that address impairment in the workplace. To assist, WorkSafeBC has created a guide for managing workplace impairment and developing a policy. The need for an impairment policy is even more relevant with the legalization of recreational cannabis.

Read More

Is Your Workplace Ready for Legalized Marijuana?

BC Forest Safety Council
June 15, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada, Canada West

The date for the legalization of marijuana in Canada is set for October 17, 2018. Employers may be concerned about the upcoming legalization of marijuana and how it is going to affect their business. Will it mean a big change for how forestry businesses run their operations? Not necessarily. Let’s look at six common questions and debunk some of the myths. 

  • Q: Does this mean that workers can now be impaired at work?
  • Q: My business already has a workplace alcohol and drug policy and procedures. Do I have to change anything?
  • Q: What about medical marijuana? Can an employee take marijuana at work if they have a prescription?
  • Q: Does removing the impaired worker mean that I can fire them?
  • Q: Is there a requirement to test workers for alcohol or drugs?
  • Q: What’s the bottom line here? How do I address legal marijuana at work without going broke?

Read More

Contractor working on Irving land in New Brunswick dies in logging truck accident

The Canadian Press in Global News
January 3, 2019
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada East, Canada

A contractor working on J.D. Irving, Ltd. land in northern New Brunswick has died after his logging truck left a road in Madawaska County. Irving spokeswoman Mary Keith says the truck left a woods road roughly 40 kilometres from Saint-Leonard at about 6 p.m. Wednesday. She says emergency services were called to the scene but that the driver, an employee of an independent contractor, died as a result of injuries sustained in the accident. Keith says Irving is actively co-operating with the investigation by police and WorkSafeNB. …Keith says the name of the driver is being withheld out of respect for the family. “Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of this driver at this difficult time,” she said. 

Read More

Ontario Northland freight train service interrupted after derailment in Hearst

By Benjamin Aube
CBC News
October 26, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada East, Canada

Four freight cars from an Ontario Northland train carrying lumber derailed Friday morning in Hearst. The derailment occurred at around 6:45 a.m., said company spokesperson Renee Baker. No injuries were reported. …”Right now it would be a little bit too premature to speculate on the actual cause,” said Baker. “We have crews in place working as quickly and safely as possible to re-rail the equipment, make necessary repairs to the track and inspect it for safety so we can resume our freight service as soon as possible.”

Read More

Workplace Health and Safety Award Winners

Workplace Safety North
October 21, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada East, Canada

Chris Serratore, Judi Tetro and Paul Andre

Each year, Workplace Safety North (WSN), the provincial health and safety association for mining, forestry, and paper, printing, and converting sectors, recognizes Ontario workplaces with a strong safety culture. “The President’s Award is our highest provincial health and safety honour, and recognizes exceptional commitment to the prevention of illness and injury, and to continuous improvement in occupational health and safety,” says Paul Andre, WSN President and Chief Executive Officer. …President’s Award winners for health and safety excellence—Forestry sector: Brinkman and Associates Reforestation Ltd., Thunder Bay; Workplace Excellence Award winners include: Brinkman and Associates Reforestation, Thunder Bay, Domtar, Dryden, Fleming’s Trucking and Logging, Hilton Beach, Resolute Forest Products, Thunder Bay Mill Operations

Read More

Ford government to upgrade Ontario’s public safety radio network

By Shawn Jeffords
The Canadian Press in Global News
October 11, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: Canada East, Canada

The Ontario government plans to rebuild the aging radio network first responders across the province rely on during emergencies, saying upgrades to the system are sorely needed. Premier Doug Ford said Thursday that the Public Safety Radio Network is prone to daily outages and must be modernized. The network covers 750,000 square kilometres across the province, including areas in the north where cellphone service is not available, and helps first responders communicate and co-ordinate during forest fires, police operations and medical emergencies. “You need modern, reliable equipment,” Ford said while speaking to a group of first responders near Alliston, Ont. “Sadly, Ontario’s public safety radio network is outdated. It’s falling apart.”

Read More

2019 Wildfire Mitigation Award Winners Announced

Occupational Health and Safety
January 21, 2019
Category: Health & Safety
Region: United States

The Wildfire Mitigation Awards committee announced Jan. 17 the recipients of the 2019 Wildfire Mitigation Awards, the highest commendation given to individuals and organizations for their outstanding leadership and innovation in wildfire mitigation. The awards, established in 2014, are co-sponsored by the National Association of State Foresters, the International Association of Fire Chiefs, the National Fire Protection Association, and the USDA Forest Service. …”State forestry agencies know firsthand that it’s always wildfire season somewhere in the United States,” said Lisa Allen, NASF president and Missouri state forester. “The 2019 Wildfire Mitigation Awardees know this, too. Year-round, they contribute to wildfire mitigation efforts that ensure the safety of thousands of communities nationwide. We congratulate them for receiving this honor and thank them for their dedication to this critically important work.” …The 2019 Wildfire Mitigation Awards will be presented at the Wildland-Urban Interface Conference in Reno, Nevada on March 27.

Read More

Wildfire smoke is becoming a nationwide health threat

By Richard Peltier
The Conversation US
November 22, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: United States

The impacts of recent forest fires in California reach well beyond the burned areas. Smoke from the Camp Fire created hazardous air quality conditions in San Francisco, more than 170 miles to the southwest – but it didn’t stop there. Cross-country winds carried it across the United States, creating hazy conditions in locations as far east as Philadelphia. …Forest fires do not discriminate about what they burn. Along with woody materials from forests and homes, they consume homes’ contents, which may contain plastics, petroleum products, chemicals and metals. This produces thick plumes of smoke that contains very large quantities of particles and gases. Many of these airborne chemicals are known to be quite toxic to humans. …Research has shown that many health effects from air pollution occur well after exposure has occurred. …This means that people may not feel the impacts of smoke inhalation until well after the smoke clears.

Read More

Protecting Construction Workers’ Lungs is a Safety Issue

By Molly McGuane
For Construction Pros
October 26, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: United States

Although air quality often takes a backseat to occupational safety, lung cancer mortalities are 50% higher among construction workers than the general population. The Center for Construction Research and Training (CPWR) and Duke University found that nearly one-fifth of lung diseases among construction workers may be a result of harmful emissions on site. While some of these toxins are considered respiratory irritants, others are long-known carcinogens directly linked to lung cancer. …As of late, silica has been referred to as the “new asbestos” because of its prevalence throughout the building trade and its ability to cause silicosis, an incurable lung disease. OSHA reports that 2 million construction workers are exposed to crystalline silica and over 800,000 workers exposed to levels beyond the recommended limit. Often a result of sawing or cutting concrete products, it has been found that these workers are twice as likely to develop chronic obstructive lung diseases like chronic bronchitis and emphysema.

Read More

Firms to pay $9M to settle suit over 2012 California fire

The Associated Press in the Seattle Times
December 10, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: United States, US West

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Officials say a construction company and a logging firm have collectively agreed to pay $9 million for damages resulting from a 2012 wildfire that burned more than 1,600 acres of national forest land in Northern California. The U.S. Attorney’s office in Sacramento says Monday that the agreement settles a lawsuit brought by the federal government against Kernen Construction and Bundy & Sons Logging. Prosecutors say Bundy logging equipment hauled by Kernen became unsecured and dragged along a highway, causing sparks that ignited dry vegetation. The resulting blaze charred a swath of brush and timber within the Shasta-Trinity National Forest. Neither company admits liability for the fire under the settlement. [END]

Read More

Two men die in separate logging accidents

Statesman Journal
October 27, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: United States, US West

Two men died in logging accidents Friday morning, one in Benton County near Alsea and the other in Linn County near Lyons. Hector Rodarte , 27, was working for Wiest Logging off Lobster Valley Road near Alsea when a log rolled onto him and co-worker Ricky Payton, 29, of Independence at 8:40 a.m. An air ambulance was requested but declined because of bad weather. Emergency personnel declared Rodarte dead at the scene. Payton was hoisted out of a steep ravine and taken to Good Sam Regional Medical Center in Corvallis; as of Saturday morning, officials said he is in stable condition. Corvallis Mountain Rescue, Corvallis Fire Department, Alsea Rural Fire, Weist Logging Employees and Benton County Sheriff’s Office Deputies assisted in the rescue.

Read More

Deputies: Falling stack of wood kills worker at West Fraser mill

By Crystal Chen
News4JAX
December 1, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: US East, United States

MAXVILLE, Fla. – One person died Friday morning in an accident at the West Fraser sawmill in Maxville, according to the Clay County Sheriff’s Office. Deputies and firefighters were called to the workplace accident at 6640 County Road 218 just after 8 a.m. Deputies said a stack of wood materials fell on a worker, killing him. “Our detectives are investigating and actively working this unfortunate incident,” the Sheriff’s Office wrote in a Tweet. [END]

Read More

Hornbeck man killed in job related accident

KTBS News
November 18, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: US East, United States

FLORIEN, LA – A Hornbeck man died early Sunday morning in a job-related accident at Boise Cascade in Florien. The victim, 24-year-old Tory L. Rainer, was pronounced dead in the scene despite life-saving efforts, Deputy Coroner Ron Rivers said. An autopsy will be performed to determine the cause of death. Rivers said the accident happened shortly after Rainer clocked in at 3 a.m. He headed to his assigned work area, which was down for maintenance, and began helping co-workers with changing out a lathe blade. That’s when the lathe swung down and pinned Rainer. Employees hoisted the lathe off Rainer and began CPR. They continued until paramedics arrived. Death was called on the scene, Rivers said. 

Read More

Fatality under investigation at Boise Cascade plywood manufacturing facility

By Boise Cascade
Global Newswire
November 19, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: US East, United States

BOISE, Idaho – Boise Cascade is working with local authorities to investigate a fatal accident that occurred at the company’s plywood manufacturing operation in Florien, Louisiana. At approximately 3:20 a.m. on November 18th, an employee was performing maintenance repair on a piece of equipment. The details surrounding how the accident occurred is under investigation. …”We are saddened to report this tragic accident,” said Larry Hataway, Southern Region Human Resources Manager. “We offer our deepest condolences to his loved ones. Counseling and support resources will be made available to his coworkers.” The Florien location employs approximately 420 people. Occupational Safety and Health Administration has been notified of the incident. Boise Cascade has suspended operations at the site until further notice.

Read More

With workplace fatalities up, BOCES buckles down on safety with ‘model’ forestry program

By Colleen Wilson
The Journal News
November 14, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: US East, United States

The first thing John Madden shows his urban forestry students is how to properly adjust a hard hat and how to identify a worn one that could get a worker hurt. “There’s so few highly-skilled young people coming out to get into the industry and these industries are so dangerous, so without any skills it’s very easy to get seriously injured,” he said. Madden oversees the Urban Forestry and Arboriculture Career and Technical Education program offered at Putnam/Northern Westchester (PNW) BOCES. The program has been around for 50 years but is getting new notice. Last month, a state agency recognized the program as a statewide model for other technical education programs.

Read More

Researchers race against extinction to uncover tree’s cancer-fighting properties

By Purdue University
Science Daily
January 17, 2019
Category: Health & Safety
Region: International

Three Chinese fir trees on a nature reserve in Southeastern China are the last of their kind. As their existence is threatened by human disturbance and climate change, researchers are hurrying to learn everything they can about the tree — [including] ways to treat various cancers. Chemists in China were initially studying the tree, Abies beshanzuensis, to …treat diabetes and obesity. …The tree’s healing powers looked grim until Mingji Dai, an organic chemist at Purdue University, started tinkering with some of its molecules in his lab. His team created synthetic versions of two, and then a few analogs, which have minor structural modifications. In collaboration with Zhong-Yin Zhang, a distinguished professor of medicinal chemistry at Purdue, he found that one of the synthetic analogs was a potent and selective inhibitor of SHP2, an increasingly popular target for cancer treatment. The findings were published in the Journal of the American Chemical Society.

Read More

The silent killer in our homes: Wood-burning stoves emit six times as much pollution as a diesel truck… and they’re ruining your health even if you don’t own one

Dr Gary Fuller, Leading Pollution Scientist
Daily Mail
November 17, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: International

Wood-burning stove may be doing the British atmosphere more harm than good. The smoke they produce is almost invisible, particularly when compared with smogs. Scientists measuring air have proven that wood-burning is not a thing of the past. …wood fires are choking the British atmosphere, adding to the smoke particles from traffic, industry and farming that cause thousands of preventable deaths. Although barely discussed, the evidence is shocking: just one of the latest ‘eco-friendly’ wood-burning stoves – those meeting all European tests – can produce about six times more particle pollution than a modern diesel lorry, or 18 times more than a modern diesel car. Worse, still, they release their fumes into residential areas and at times when people are likely to be at home. …As we suspected, a great deal of wood was being burned and it was making up ten per cent of the particle pollution that Londoners were breathing during winter.

Read More

Person dead at sawmill, near Masterton, circumstances unclear

Stuff.co.nz
November 9, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: International

A person is dead after an incident at a Wairarapa sawmill on Friday morning.  Kiwi Lumber confirmed the incident happened at its mill near Masterton on Norman Ave, Waingawa in the Carterton district.  Spokeswoman Liz Read said “the staff and the site manager are extremely traumatised”.  The person died at 8.35am Friday, police said. … The circumstances which led to the worker’s death have not yet been publicly released.  … According to Kiwi Lumber’s website, the sawmill is “a structural mill focussed on producing framing timber primarily for domestic construction”.  …WorkSafe said it was notified of the fatality and was investigating.

 

Read More

Improving farm safety: standards for agricultural machinery just updated

By Clare Naden
The International Organization for Standardization (ISO)
November 5, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: International

Tractors and self-propelled ride-on machines used in agriculture and forestry have evolved over the years since Old MacDonald’s days and now feature as many electronic parts and systems as your modern car. A number of these are designed to reduce risks by preventing unintended movements and recognizing errors and other possible hazards, because ensuring the vehicles function correctly is as important as the functions themselves. The series of standards ISO 25119Tractors and machinery for agriculture and forestry – Safety-related parts of control systems, is widely used by the agricultural industry and its suppliers and has recently been updated. It sets out the general principles for the design and development of safety-related parts of control systems on tractors and self-propelled ride-on machines used in agriculture and forestry. It can even be applied to mobile equipment used in municipalities such as street-sweeping machines.

Read More

Maintenance work leads to crush injuries

By WorkSafe NZ
Scoop Independent News
November 2, 2018
Category: Health & Safety
Region: International

WorkSafe New Zealand says businesses must learn from previous health and safety failings to ensure workers are protected. Carter Holt Harvey Limited appeared in Whangarei District Court yesterday following an October 2016 incident at their Ruakaka plant. A worker suffered life changing injuries after he was crushed by part of a machine he was working on. The worker was undertaking maintenance work on the machinery that makes laminated veneer wood products. Believing the machine was secured against inadvertent movement, the worker leaned into the machine to make adjustments. Part of the machine moved and collided with his chest and shoulders, resulting in significant crush injuries.

Read More