Safety Inspections

The requirement for doing workplace inspections is specified in the Workers Compensation Act Part 130(h) and in the Workers Compensation Board, Occupational Health and Safety Regulation, Part 3 Section 3.8. To meet this requirement, all employees, supervisors and principal investigators are required to inspect their work areas for safety. The frequency of inspections is based on the level of hazard, and should be conducted at intervals that will prevent the development of unsafe conditions.

The objective of inspections is to identify safety hazards for the purpose of eliminating or mitigating them. All inspections should be documented. Templates have been developed to assist with documentation and reporting. These templates can be modified to meet your needs.

General Safety Inspection Checklist 

Use for  annual inspections of shared spaces.
Laboratory Safety Inspection Checklist Use for annual inspections of laboratories.
General Safety Inspection Guidance Document Provides guidance for Local Joint Health & Safety Committees on conducting inspections.
Laboratory Safety Inspection Guidance Document Provides guidance for departments on conducting laboratory inspections. 
Laboratory Monthly Safety Inspection Checklist
Use for monthly inspections of laboratories.
Inspection Summary Report Template Use to generate a summary report of inspection findings

Inspections are undertaken by:

  • The supervisor directing individuals to do a specific task
  • Employees required to perform work tasks
  • Local Joint Health & Safety Committees.

Reporting Inspection Findings

The purpose of reporting is to ensure that the individual responsible for the area is advised about the required action and the urgency for action.  Actions include flagging recurring hazards, establishing a means for follow-up and ensuring that the hazardous situation is corrected.

Department/Unit Inspections

Inspections of laboratories and shops where tools, machinery and equipment are used are the responsibility of departments.  The supervisor and employees in the unit determine the frequency for inspections, based on potential risk. EHRS staff is available to provide guidance in establishing the inspection protocol and reporting format. Recommendations for corrective action are forwarded to the unit supervisor. Follow-up is required to confirm that corrective action has been taken.

Safety Committee Inspections

Management and worker representatives from the Local Joint Health & Safety Committees perform safety inspections of shared spaces within their areas of responsibilities.  Deficiencies, if any, are forwarded to the area supervisor for corrective action. The inspection team(s) will summarize all inspection findings and provide a summary report to the Local Committee. If necessary, inspections can be scheduled on a rotating basis.  A summary of findings and items acted upon will also be forwarded to EHRS for information.

Where the committee deems it necessary, a written response requesting compliance status can be specified.  In such cases, the department head must respond within 21 days.  Follow-up is required to confirm corrective action has been taken.

Failure to Take Corrective Action

Should there be a failure to address the safety concern, the reason for lack of action must be determined and, if necessary, the safety concern will be elevated to the next management level.