NEVER AGAIN - Since the 2012 dust explosions in the northern interior, combustible dust is on everyone’s radar and the BC Forest Industry is taking it seriously and so have their employees mostly represented by the United Steelworkers (USW). Joint Health & Safety Committee can help if they are provided the tools and training.
LOOKING AHEAD - A SAFER Combustible Dust Advisor will offer training on combustible dust management and assist your Joint Health & Safety Committee to better understand what you need to do to with respect to combustible dust mitigation and control. The SAFER Combustible Dust Advisor will help to identify where wood dust might accumulate both in close proximity to typical primary and secondary machine centres, and where wood dust accumulates away from the processes that produce the dust. These might be in the general work area, in concealed areas like attics, false ceilings, crawl spaces, electrical panels and wall spaces, and within the various components of the dust collection system.
LEADING THE WAY - During recent forest industry collective bargaining, the negotiating parties recognized an opportunity to further involve employees—USW members—in efforts to control combustible dust in the workplace. As a result, SAFER Combustible Dust Advisors have been selected from four regions in the BC Southern Interior and BC Coast. These individuals were selected to receive combustible dust recognition training for their role as SAFER Combustible Dust Advisors based on their involvement as safety advocates within their operations and a Occupational Health & Safety Committee background.
INVOLVING JOINT HEALTH & SAFETY COMMITTEES - The SAFER Combustible Dust Advisor Pilot Project was created to promote awareness and compliance of the evolving dust standards for the purpose of enhancing safety and productivity. And involvement of the Joint Health & Safety Committee is paramount. Committee involvement will enhance their knowledge base on combustible dust management and will promote a sense of meaningful participation with regard to combustible dust mitigation and control.
MANAGEMENT OF CHANGE PROCESS IMPORTANT - A management of change policy should be implemented in all lumber manufacturing operations handling combustible dust and be understood by Joint Health & Safety Committee members. The goal of the Joint Health & Safety Committee is to make sure that no change occurs that could increase the severity or consequence of an existing dust hazard or introduce a dust hazard where none previously existed. SAFER Combustible Dust Advisors will also urge Joint Health & Safety Committees to become familiar with the resources offered by Fire Inspection & Prevention Initiative (FIPI) which offers education on the science behind combustible dust explosions and the steps that can be taken to mitigate and/or control combustible dust a its source.
Purpose of Guidelines
Provide a structure to follow when examining lumber manufacturing operations for accumulations of primary and/or secondary combustible dust (CD) in a way that draws attention to instances that require attention and gives feedback when positive cleanup practices are observed.
These guidelines represent a starting place for ad-hoc combustible dust management assessments and do not represent the entire scope of a combustible dust regulatory inspection.
Ground Level Combustible Dust Management Assessment
Production Level Combustible Dust Management Assessment
Upper Level Combustible Dust Management Assessment (Filing Room)
More SAFER Combustible Dust Advisor Resources
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SAFER is jointly
It is pretty clear to someone just hearing about SAFER that safety is the chief concern of this organization. The name, SAFER, stands for Safety Advisory Foundation for Education and Research. SAFER was created through broad negotiations between the IWA Canada (now United Steelworkers) and FIR on the coast and the IFLRA in the southern interior for the 1988-1991 master collective agreements in both regions.
SAFER continues to be jointly managed by USW, FIR, and the IFLRA where the industry and the union enjoy equal representation. Under the leadership of two Co-Chairs selected from the union and industry ranks, the SAFER Council coordinates its safety activities and initiatives under the guidance of eight safety advocate board members and six trustees.