Inspectors should look at flatbed safety: OTA

TORONTO, ON – The Ontario Ministry of Labor’s falls blitz is coming, and the Ontario Trucking Alliance (OTA) is urging them to pay special attention to flatbed truck safety.

The falls blitz, which covers ladder safety, slips, trips, and falls, in the mining, industrial, construction, and health care industries, will be running from Oct. 2 to Nov. 30.

Building off a campaign started by the Canadian Trucking Alliance (CTA), the OTA is particularly concerned with unsafe practices of loading and unloading flatbed trucks. Improperly securing loads has led to them falling on drivers, leaving a high risk of injury or even death.

The CTA says its concerns also include inadequate lighting, improper maintenance of grounds, and that many sites require drivers to tarp their loads off-site, which could put drivers at risk on the roadside.

Often unsafe conditions occur at places not under the control of the driver’s employer, such as third-party suppliers. OTA is asking the MOL to pay special attention to these facilities during their up-coming inspections.

“We know that some shippers and receivers take health and safety very seriously, but unfortunately not all supply chain partners share this as a major priority,” said OTA president Stephen Laskowski.

The issues came to the attention of the CTA after a hazard warning was issued by the Occupational Health and Safety Directorate at Employment and Social Development Canada.

The OTA is urging inspectors to prioritize the inspection of conditions for drivers at certain facilities and keep an eye out for the conditions of grounds and lighting, while conducting their blitz.

The OTA is also asking drivers to report facilities in the supply chain they believe are not safe to operations&, so they can alert the ministry.

A complete list of the ministry’s scheduled blitzes can be found here.

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