Emergency events such as severe flooding and landslides can occur with very little warning. When creating an emergency response plan for the workplace, considerations need to include planning for evacuation, rescue, and re-entry, when safe to do so.
All employers in British Columbia are required to plan, prepare, and train their employees for emergencies. The Occupational Health and Safety Regulation specifies what is required in sections 4.13 through 4.16
, and Part 32.
WorkSafeBC has highlighted the following key requirements:
- Conducting a risk assessment to determine the most likely emergency situations in the workplace. Engaging workers in the risk assessment.
- Developing appropriate written procedures for evacuation, rescue, and re-entry once it is safe to do so.
- Providing well-marked means of escape in the event of an emergency.
- Ensuring that emergency procedures consider the safety of disabled workers.
- Conducting drills at least once every year.
- Making sure all workers on site know how to respond to an incident. Providing training to employees in emergency procedures and fire prevention.
- Assessing and providing adequate first aid coverage.
- Providing appropriate personal protective equipment for workers doing the rescue, evacuation, and subsequent re-entry into workplaces.
- Ensuring a sufficient number of workers are available to implement rescue procedures.
Please visit WorkSafeBC for additional health and safety information and resources including emergency preparedness and flood response resources.