Ontario safety blitz targets mine traffic

Ontario will focus on motor vehicles and mobile equipment during a two-month enforcement blitz at underground and surface mines across Ontario this summer.
In July and August mining inspectors and engineers will target traffic control hazards that could result in workers being injured or killed. Inspectors will check that employers are complying with the Occupational Health and Safety Act and its regulations. This includes checking that the mines have good traffic control policies and procedures in place to protect workers.

“Workers can be at risk of serious injury or death if hazards exist involving motor vehicles and mobile equipment at mines," said George Gritziotis, chief prevention officer. "We must all work together to improve the health and safety of mine workers."

Mines use motor vehicles such as locomotives and haulage trucks and mobile equipment such as loaders and excavators. Traffic control measures are used when the vehicle or equipment operator’s visibility is limited, a situation that can put “pedestrians” (workers on foot) at risk of injury.

Good preventative measures can include:

• proper reflective clothing for workers

• effective illumination

• monitoring work conditions

• good education and training.

Between 2000 and 2014, 12 workers died in Ontario mines as a result of incidents involving motor vehicles and mobile equipment.