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Ontario launches safety blitz on roadwork hazards

By COS staff

Construction sites across Ontario should be ready for possible visit from Ontario Ministry of Labour safety inspectors as the province launches its latest safety blitz that focuses on safety of roadside workers.

Beginning June 1st, inspectors from the Ministry of Labour will visit construction sites to ensure proper traffic control measures are used when vehicles and large pieces of mobile equipment, such as asphalt pavers, backhoe loaders and cranes, are on site.

The inspectors will check that:

    •    traffic protection plans are kept on site and workers know how to carry out those plans;

    •    traffic control devices such as signs, cones and barricades are in good condition and correctly placed;

    •    traffic control workers are properly trained and do not perform any other work when directing traffic; and,

    •    high visibility clothing is worn by all workers who may be endangered by vehicle traffic.

Between 2009 and 2011, four workers died and 15 were seriously injured while trying to control traffic at road work projects. Since 2008, ministry inspectors have conducted more than 266,000 field visits, 36 inspection blitzes and issued more than 426,000 compliance orders.

Protecting construction workers on the job is part of the McGuinty government's continued commitment to preventing workplace injuries through its Safe at Work Ontario strategy, while creating jobs, the Ministry of Labour said.

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