On construction sites in Canada, falls are the main reason for accidents and safety problems. Falls, even those that happen from a very low height, can result in significant injury. Because of this, anyone who works at a height of three metres or more must pass a fall protection training course.
Employers have a responsibility to properly train their employees and to verify that employee training is up-to-date and verifiable. This training and the requirements for verification may vary between provinces.
Keep reading to find some advice on what courses ought to cover and the expiration date of fall protection training.
Workers at construction sites using fall hazards protection equipment are required to go through a high level of fall protection training. In order to reduce the risk of safety events, these courses educate participants on how to use fall hazards protection equipment, safety procedures, and expectations.
Although there is a federal requirement that employers make sure employees using fall protection equipment should be trained in its use by a qualified person, provincial regulations also exist with specific requirements based on the province in which you are operating.
For example, in Ontario, the specifications for working at heights training program are outlined in the Occupational Health and Safety Awareness and Training regulation. Employers are expected to have fall protection plans in place.
The employer is required to ensure that each employee who may use fall protection equipment has received written and verbal training from a qualified individual on how to use it. Additionally, the employee must adhere to working at heights regulations.
The person who conducts the training is required to create and maintain records. For specific rules for your province, you should refer to your local legislation.
The Ontario working at heights training program must be completed every 3 years. Work at heights training has a maximum duration of three years after completion. After three years, a worker must complete an effective safety training course to maintain validity for the next three years.
Like other provincial regulations, the validity period for working at heights training in other provinces may vary. Refer to local legislation for more information.
According to Ontario Regulation 297/13, any employee who is expected to use some sort of fall protection system is required to undergo fall protection training as part of a fall protection plan.
A fall protection plan should include training in the use of personal protective equipment, such as a fall arrest device. Refer to provincial legislation to see what your fall protection plan should include.
Federal law also stipulates in SOR/86-304 section 12.07 that employers must implement fall protection systems for employees that work at a height of three metres or more, as well as heights less than three metres over surfaces that present a greater risk than solid, flat ground.
Other provinces may have additional criteria for which workers require fall protection training and/or working at heights training. Refer to local legislation for more details.
Employers must verify training for employees in Ontario. The workers can download training records electronically by registering with SkillsPass. Workers completing fall protective training need to provide an accurate and complete Fall Protection Certificate issued to their employer from WorkplaceNL.
Other provinces may require different verifications for fall protection training. For more information, you should refer to the local legislation in your province.
Employers have to track each employee's education. For people who have completed fall protection training in Canada, you should have an employee's certificate. These are useful if you want to make a formal education report available to a government inspector.
Employers who fail to verify and track employees may face penalties, including imprisonment. Maximum fines for non-compliance with the Canada Occupational Health and Safety Regulations are between $100,000 and $1,000,000.
If your training record for the Ontario working at heights course was lost or damaged, you can either contact your training provider to acquire a copy of your fall protection training records and proof of successful completion documentation, or you can get your digital record online via SkillsPass.
When it comes to verifying worker training, employers are responsible to ensure the worker has received training. When a person changes employers, it is the employer's responsibility to verify that the person is qualified and properly trained.
Ontario has approved a fall protection training program through WorkplaceNL in Newfoundland. Newfoundlanders must demonstrate they have successfully completed the fall protection course and completed additional training before they can work in Ontario.