Workers Health & Safety Centre

WHSC releases Suspended Access Equipment Installer & Operator program

Changes to regulations governing Ontario construction projects include new requirements to ensure the safe design and use of suspended access equipment including mandatory training.

The changes would come into effect a full seven years after a December 24, 2009 tragedy left four workers dead and another seriously injured when the scaffolding they were working from broke in half and fell 13 storeys to the ground. Company officials and the swing stage manufacturer were charged and convicted under the province’s Occupational Health & Safety Act (the Act) and federal Criminal Code, including a 3 ½-year prison sentence for a project manager, which was upheld upon appeal last year.  
Workers Health & Safety Centre now offers mandatory competency trainingfor workers who may be required to install or inspect suspended work platforms and boatswain’s chairs.
In addition to providing training to users of this equipment, employers must designate and provide additional training to ‘a competent worker’ who will install and inspect suspended work platforms or boatswain chairs before they are first put into service. WHSC’s new Suspended Access Equipment (SAE) Installer & Operator program is intended to address this training requirement for ‘competent workers’ (Reg 213/91, section 138 (2)).
Workers who install and inspect this equipment must have adequate oral and written instruction on: rigging, secure beams and equipment, fixed supports, principles of suspension lines, hoisting devices, load limits, manufacturing instructions for assembling, installing and disassembling suspended work platforms, reading and using roof plans and work plans and electrical systems. Designated competent workers must also demonstrate proficiency in installing and inspecting this equipment in accordance with roof plans, work plans and manufacturer’s instructions.
As with all WHSC operator competency programs, this new training program features demonstrations by the instructor. Participants must also successfully complete a practicum and rotate through specific activities related to safe operation of suspended access equipment. WHSC consulted with constituents and sought feedback through a pilot of this program to help ensure the training results in required learning.
WHSC will provide participants a training certificate after successful completion. Training must be renewed though every three years.

WHSC is also developing a new one-day program to meet requirements to train workers who use suspended access equipment, but are not designated competent workers. Stay tuned for updates on that program.
WHSC offers a range of training programs and information resources many of which are focused on the construction sector, and meet legal requirements for Equipment Operator Training and Working at Heights training.

WHSC Suspended Access Equipment Installer & Operator Training is now available for booking. Share the news with your contacts.
Contact a WHSC Training Service Representative for more details or to organize training.
Call:   1-888-869-7950