Chapter 13 - Promote safe work practices

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It is the owner's duty to make sure that work on board and around the vessel is not dangerous to the health or safety of crew members.

The Safe Working Practices Regulations set out common sense requirements for preventing injuries and illness that apply to all small commercial vessels. These include making sure crew members:

  • receive proper training in the dangers of their job;
  • are aware of common hazards as well as ways to avoid accidents and injury;
  • wear protective clothing and use equipment where there is a risk of injury;
  • have competent supervision;
  • are not allowed to work if they are not in a fit state;
  • use tools and other items only for their intended purpose; and
  • follow established procedures for potentially hazardous activities, such as refuelling.

You must also make sure that:

  • only competent and qualified people carry out installation and repairs;
  • equipment and machinery is safe to operate;
  • guards are placed on moving parts and protection is in place on hot objects where people could come into contact with them; and
  • any unsafe conditions are made safe once again.

Training for workplace safety is also covered in the Marine Personnel Regulations. Among other things, you must make sure that new crew members are trained and aware of dangers on board before their first voyage.

For vessels operating under federal jurisdiction, the Canada Labour Code and the Marine Occupational Safety and Health Regulations are also applicable. Vessels under federal jurisdiction include vessels owned by a corporation established to perform any duty on behalf of the Government of Canada, vessels doing inter-provincial business, and vessels operated by a federal corporation other than a corporation doing local or private business in Yukon, the Northwest Territories or Nunavut.

Provincial and territorial workplace safety legislation may also apply to your operation. In some provinces the Workers' Compensation Board is active in the marine field.

More Information

To consult your local Transport Canada Centre, see Appendix 2.

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