The Ontario Ministry of Labour (MOL) has announced that an inspection and enforcement “blitz” of chemical use is planned forindustrial and health care workplaces. MOL occupational health and safety inspectors will be concentrating on the use of chemical substances that are potentially “caustic, noxious, or allergenic” during workplace inspections in September 2009.
The MOL inspectors will ensure that sufficient employee training and education has been provided; appropriate personal protective equipment is available and used properly; chemical containers are labeled and stored properly; emergency eye-wash stations are available; and emergency procedures (such as spill control plans) are adequate.
Although chemical use in all workplaces will be of interest, the MOL inspectors will specifically focus on:
Swimming Pools and Spas (e.g. disinfectants)
Dry Cleaners (e.g. perchloroethylene and hydrocarbon solvents)
Metal Fabrication Shops (e.g. metalworking fluids)
Health Care Facilities (e.g. chemicals used in therapeutic pools and laundries)
Pinchin recommends that all our clients conduct a review of their:
WHMIS Programs (including training)
Occupational Hygiene Programs (including air sampling records)
Spill Response Procedures
Respirator (and other PPE) Programs
Chemical Safety Programs
For further information, or assistance in developing programs or procedures for chemical-related initiatives in your workplace, contact Steve Barnett, M.Eng., CIH, ROH, by phone or email via our Occupational Health & Safety Contact page.