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A series of toolbox meeting guides on safety topics specific to road construction.
Standardizing B.C.'s traffic control trainingMore consistent, safer work practices are the expected outcomes of a new program intended to standardize the training of an estimated 6,000 traffic control persons (TCPs) across British Columbia.
The BC Road Construction and Maintenance Safety Network is implementing the comprehensive program under a WorkSafeBC administrative contract.
Based on a "train-the-trainer" concept, the program involves certifying instructors to deliver a new traffic control course whose graduates will earn "proof of completion of training" documentation. Trainers may come from existing training deliverers. This program is intended to provide a uniform quality of training delivery only and there is no intent to replace colleges or others now providing training, only to set the first clear standard for that training.
Completion of the course will satisfy the requirement of the Occupational Health & Safety Regulation that "Employers of traffic control persons must train and instruct those workers in a course acceptable to the board ...".
Eventually, gradual phase-in of all TCPs will be required to complete the newer, standardized training. Those who previously completed other programs can continue working during an initial phase-in period expected to last at least through 2003.
Meeting a clear need
Inconsistent training has been a longstanding concern. With no uniform approach, some TCPs could receive as little as 10 minutes' preparation. Compounding the problem across the province are growing traffic volumes, infrastructure up-grade and heavier loads leading to more roadwork.
The Safety Network initiative addresses the basic concern with:
A new year's start
The plan is to certify the first instructors in March - with ultimately 400 of them delivering the TCP course for colleges, private agencies, unions and companies with in-house training capabilities. The BC Safety Council has been contracted by the Safety Network to deliver the instructor training program, and afterward, provide a quality control audit of the TCP training. These "master" trainers come from industry and some were involved in the MOT advisory committee.
Funding comes from assessments on the employers that benefit from the improved training. Putting the program in place and running it is expected to cost $190,000 in the first year, with subsequent annual expenses expected to be no more than $130,000.
Before approving funding, WorkSafeBC consulted with utilities, municipalities, roadbuilders and MOT. The program parallels recommendations made in 1998 by a ministry TCP stakeholder committee.
WorkSafeBC is forming a new committee with union and employer representation specifically to provide advice on policy.
For more information:
Engineering Control Guidelines for Hot Mix Asphalt Pavers -- Part I: New Highway-Class Pavers
"This document represents the collaborative efforts of industry, labor, and government to protect the health of workers exposed to asphalt fumes during paving operations. Guidelines are presented for implementing engineering controls that reduce highway asphalt fumes at the source. Such primary prevention methods are the cornerstone of public and occupational health."
Source: NIOSH (National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health)
OSHA Technical Links: Asphalt Fumes
List of "technical links" to internal and external online resources.
Source: OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration)