Reminder: CVSA Safe Driver Week July 12 to 18, 2020

Operation Safe Driver is a CVSA program aimed at reducing deaths and injuries involving large trucks, buses and cars due to unsafe driver behaviors.

The Alliance intends to accomplish this goal by educating all drivers about ways to share the roads safely.

The Operation Safe Driver program has two main campaigns to educate drivers.

Teens and Trucks – Our Teens and Trucks program aims to educate youth drivers about how to drive safely around a large truck or bus.
Defeat Distracted Driving – Defeat Distracted Driving is our campaign aimed at educating commercial vehicle drivers about the dangers of distracted driving and ways to avoid becoming distracted while on our roadways.
In addition, there is an annual one-week enforcement and educational blitz, Operation Safe Driver Week, that spotlights unsafe driving behaviors by both commercial motor vehicle drivers and car drivers in an effort to combat the number of deaths and injuries from crashes.

Operation Safe Driver holds activities across the United States, Canada and Mexico to increase commercial vehicle and non-commercial vehicle traffic enforcement, safety belt enforcement, and driver roadside inspections; improve driver regulatory compliance; implement commercial driver educational and awareness programs to the motor carrier population; educate youth about safely sharing the roads with large trucks and buses; and increase awareness to the general motoring public about safe operations around commercial motor vehicles.

CVSA – in partnership with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), state, provincial and local law enforcement, and industry – launched the Operation Safe Driver campaign in 2007 to reduce the number of deaths and injuries resulting from crashes involving large trucks, buses and cars.

Source: https://www.cvsa.org/program/programs/operation-safe-driver/

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A Business Readiness Playbook For Trucking and Logistics Employers

Trucking HR has created the following Employer Playbook to help businesses prepare post COVID-19

The past few months have been extremely challenging as organizations, in all sectors, were forced to react to COVID-19 and the associated business implications it presented. We are particularly sensitive to the fact that our industry has played a key role, as an essential service, in keeping our economy moving. This has not been without the hard work and dedication of our fleet employers and in particular, the HR professionals within our Top Fleet organizations.

Now, as businesses prepare to re-open all on-site operations, it’s important to take a planned approach so as not to jeopardize the health and safety of your workforce. At Trucking HR, our intention is to supply valuable information that informs your Human Resources policies and to provide practical and innovative HR tools. This guide offers insight into some of the important considerations that you will need to make when re-opening your on-site operations.

We hope that this guide will help lighten the burden of the unknown and provide you with guidance and direction.

Trucking HR Employer Playbook

 

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Consultation on Proposed Amendments to Part 8 of the Occupational Health and Safety Regulation

WorkSafeBC

Our Policy, Regulation and Research Division is requesting feedback on proposed amendments to Part 8, Personal Protective Clothing and Equipment, section 8.11(1) – safety headgear, of the Occupational Health and Safety Regulation. The consultation phase provides stakeholders an opportunity to share feedback prior to the proposed amendments being taken to public hearing.

All stakeholder feedback is carefully considered and analyzed, and provided to WorkSafeBC’s Board of Directors as part of their decision-making process

http://www.worksafebcmedia.com/enews/prrd/200630-part8/200630-part8.html

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Helping Truck Drivers Keep on Trucking During COVID-19

Organizations and individuals are coming together to support the “Highway Heroes” delivering the essential goods we rely on during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Please take a moment to think about how much we rely on commercial truck drivers — especially during the COVID-19 pandemic as they deliver our groceries, medical supplies, and so much more.

But truck drivers’ jobs have gotten tougher as more and more businesses along their routes have shut down. With so many businesses closed, it’s been hard for drivers to get food at their usual places. In response, a group of B.C. business owners and the BC Trucking Association (BCTA) launched the Meals for Truckers program on April 20. Its goal is to ensure that commercial truck drivers have the resources and support they need to continue doing their jobs. The program points drivers to food truck locations where they can pick up a meal, as well as find restroom facilities, truck-friendly hotels and motels, and other resources.

I spoke with Dave Earle, president of the BCTA, who described how successful the program has been.

“When you think about where we are today, compared to the problems we were having in the first two weeks, when drivers were unable to find food anywhere, it’s been absolutely remarkable,” Dave says, adding that the vast majority of the meals have been at no charge to truckers.

A number of corporate sponsors have stepped in and paid food truck owners to fund meals. So have private individuals. (See sponsorship opportunities for more information if you’re interested.)

Not only does this service benefit truck drivers, it’s also good for food truck operators. Many are looking for new opportunities after losing business from cancelled festivals and events.

Says Dave: “They’re the smallest of small businesses and we have so many of them throughout the province. Now they can sign up on our website and we’ll work to find them a site. We want to help them get involved.”

Keeping truck drivers safe as well as fed
In addition to feeding drivers, industry has been brainstorming ways to protect them, since they can potentially encounter a lot of people. Using electronic signatures and other virtual technologies are among the solutions for minimizing contact between truck drivers and workers at companies when products are picked up and dropped off.

“We have been getting the industry together to come up with some best practices and solutions to solve the day-to-day issues that have come about as a result of COVID-19,” says Suki Singh, a transportation OHS consultant with WorkSafeBC. “Drivers need simple protocols on how to reduce touch points, keep them safe, and make things easier.”

Suki worked with the BCTA and SafetyDriven to create the COVID-19 Safe Drivers Communication Tools Package. It offers resources for helping trucking companies and their customers communicate about their new safety protocols and processes.

“It’s been tough but the industry has come together to try to help in as many ways as they can,” says Suki, describing the growing support he has seen in communities throughout the province. “I think it’s good how humanity seems to have come to the forefront again. People are saying: ‘You know what? I’m in a difficult spot, so is somebody else. What can I do to help?’”

Learn more about individual Highway Heroes honoured on the Meals for Truckers website, and nominate your own Highway Hero in your family or community.

Source: https://speakingofsafety.ca/

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Long Road to Recovery for BC Goods and Passenger Transporters

Langley, British Columbia—Statistics the BC Trucking Association (BCTA) has gathered for May 2020 indicate that all members surveyed – trucking and motor coach companies and the suppliers and service providers supporting them – don’t expect to return to pre-COVID-19 business levels for another 10 to 11 months and longer for motor coach companies, who expect to face up to another 20 months of recovery from the harsh changes imposed by the pandemic. Some may not make it that far.

BCTA conducted a third COVID-19 Impact Survey of its members between May 27 and June 9, focusing on data for May 2020, following surveys for March and April. In this latest survey, looking only at the next three months, 92 percent of motor coach company respondents indicated they are concerned about the survival of their business (an increase of 7 percent over April). For trucking, 32 percent of respondents are concerned about survival (a decrease of 5 percent) and for suppliers, the number of respondents concerned for survival in the short term has risen by 7 percent since April, to 25 percent overall.

“The majority of our members support government measures to deal with COVID-19, things like closing the border and following stringent health protocols to keep drivers and customers safe,” says Dave Earle, BCTA president & CEO. “What BCTA is looking at now is how to address changes to operations and find ways to help companies survive until BC’s economy starts to recover. Our own concern is that business will take longer to rebound than we’d like, putting some BC road carriers in jeopardy.”

BCTA’s motor coach members, in particular, have good cause to worry about fallout from the pandemic. BC as yet has no date for a return to international travel, concerts, or conventions, the lifeblood of seasonal support operations like charter coach services. Trucking companies are affected by steep drops in retail sales, housing starts, exports to the US and imports from China and other global supply chain members.

Results of the third COVID-19 Impact Survey indicate that:

  • Trucking companies have, on average, experienced a 23 percent drop in revenue, a slight improvement of 7 percent from our previous survey in April, when revenue fell, on average, by 30 percent;
  • Motor coach companies saw an average 97 percent drop in revenue, a slight increase over April (about 1 percent); and
  • Suppliers and service providers realized a 39 percent drop in revenue, a further 3 percent drop compared to April.

As employers, BCTA members are also struggling to keep staff working, and layoffs continued through May, in spite of government wage subsidy and other programs:

  • For trucking companies:
    • In April, 53 percent reported an average 22 temporary layoffs per company, and 24 percent reported an average of 2 permanent layoffs.
    • By May, 54 percent reported 9 temporary layoffs per company and 21 percent reported 2 permanent layoffs.
  • For motor coach companies:
    • In April, 92 percent reported an average of 41 temporary layoffs, with 15 percent reporting an average of 17 permanent layoffs.
    • For May, 83 percent reported an average of 42 temporary layoffs, and 8 percent reported an average of 5 permanent layoffs.
  • For suppliers and service providers:
    • In April, 40 percent of respondents reported temporarily laying off an average of 34 employees, and 7 percent reported permanent layoffs of an average of 11 employees.
    • For May, 42 percent of employers temporarily laid off an average of 21 employees, while 16 percent permanently laid off an average of 27.

BCTA is assisting our members by developing health protocols and guidance for the use of personal protective equipment (PPE), approved by the Provincial Health Office, to ensure that our trucking and motor coach members are equipped to effectively address working within parameters imposed by COVID-19. Until supplies of PPE improved, we obtained and distributed thousands of bottles of hand sanitizer to our members at cost, as well as non-medical face masks for truck drivers and other employees. While charter bus services will depend on a return to travel options and demand, they also face, more than trucking, the need to build consumer confidence.

BCTA continues to keep members informed about government programs available to assist businesses, including loans (including for commercial rent), wage subsidies, and payment deferrals. With the Canadian Trucking Alliance, we’re advocating changes to the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy, so that more companies are eligible to benefit.

Background

BCTA’s third COVID-19 Impact Survey (May 2020) had a response rates of 21 percent for trucking company members and 57 percent for motor coach company members. The second survey (for April 2020) received response rates of 24 percent and 62 percent, respectively.

For suppliers and service providers among our membership, the response rate for the third survey was 18 percent (compared 23 percent for the second survey). Almost half of these respondents (44 percent) were truck/trailer manufacturers, dealers, and/or dealt with sales, service, repair and rentals. The remaining respondents included insurance, driver training schools, safety or environmental consultants, HR or employment services, financing, transportation management systems, communications, marketing or legal services.

Percentages regarding expectations for economic recovery quoted above are based on weighted averages for responses from each survey group.

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WorkSafeBC Deferring Quarterly Premium Payments for an Additional Quarter

Richmond, B.C. (June 8, 2020) — WorkSafeBC today announced that it is extending the deferral period for quarterly premium payments for an additional three months, without penalty or interest.
In order to ensure account balances are correct, employers will still be required to report their payroll for the first and second quarters by July 20, 2020. However, the payments for the first and second quarters will not be due until October 20, 2020, when third-quarter payments are due.
The deferral only impacts employers who are required to report payroll and pay premiums on a quarterly basis. Employers who report annually will not be impacted because they do not report payroll or pay premiums until March 2021.
WorkSafeBC recognizes the challenges many employers are facing amid the COVID-19 pandemic, and has taken several measures to support them, including:

• On March 27, WorkSafeBC announced that first-quarter premiums were deferred until June 30, 2020, without penalty or interest. Approximately 27,000 employers in the province opted to take advantage of the premium-deferral measure.
• On May 26, WorkSafeBC announced it was waiving premiums on wages paid to furloughed workers of employers receiving the Canadian Emergency Wage Subsidy. This change was retroactive to the March 15, 2020 start date of the CEWS and will continue for the duration of the program.

Preliminary Base Premium Rates for 2021
WorkSafeBC is postponing the release of its 2021 preliminary rates — and the associated rate consultation sessions — until the fall of this year.
The release of the preliminary rates and consultation sessions were originally scheduled to occur in July, but WorkSafeBC has determined that additional time is required due to the economic uncertainty resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic.
The additional time will provide a better perspective on the prospects for the investment markets and the economy, which is required to complete the year-end forecasting, an integral element in determining next year’s rates.

About WorkSafeBC

WorkSafeBC engages workers and employers to prevent injury, disease, and disability in B.C. When work-related injuries or diseases occur, WorkSafeBC provides compensation and support to people in their recovery, rehabilitation, and safe return to work. We serve approximately 2.4 million workers and 245,000 employers across B.C.

For more information, contact:
Media Relations, WorkSafeBC
Email: media@worksafebc.com
Tel: 604-276-5157

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Adding Diseases Caused by Communicable Viral Pathogens, Including COVID-19, to Schedule 1 of the Workers Compensation Act

Source: WorkSafeBC

The Policy, Regulation and Research Division is releasing a discussion paper on adding diseases caused by communicable viral pathogens, including COVID-19, to Schedule 1 of the Workers Compensation Act with options and draft amendments to stakeholders for comment.

If a disease is identified in Schedule 1 and the worker was employed in the corresponding process or industry listed in the Schedule, then WorkSafeBC presumes the cause of the disease is work-related, unless the contrary is proved.

Proposed deletions are identified with a strikethrough and additions are identified in bold.

Discussion paper

There are a number of ways for stakeholders to provide feedback on the options and draft amendments:

(a) Comment link: Through the Comment link below, you will be able to provide immediate feedback by completing an online submission form.

Please note: Once you click the “submit” button at the bottom of the form you cannot access it again to make additional comments. Therefore, if you wish to make detailed comments in the feedback section, you may want to draft your comments using a word processing format and then cut and paste them into the submission form.

Comment

Alternatively, submissions can be submitted as follows:

(b) Email: policy@worksafebc.com
(c) Mail: Louise Kim
Senior Manager
Policy, Regulation and Research Division
WorkSafeBC
P.O. Box 5350, Stn. Terminal
Vancouver BC V6B 5L5

The consultation period for this item will end at 4:30 p.m. on Friday, June 12, 2020 (consultation has been expedited and will end on June 12th, in order for the Board of Directors to consider the proposed amendments at its July meeting). The Board of Directors will consider stakeholder feedback before making a decision on the draft amendments.

Please note that all comments become part of the Policy, Regulation and Research Division’s database and may be published, including the identity of organizations and those participating on behalf of organizations. The identity of those who have participated on their own behalf will be kept confidential according to the provisions of the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act.

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Labour Program Hazard Alert: Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS) – Temporary changes Related to COVID-19

Temporary changes and legislative requirements

In order to address a possible shortage of cleaning supplies containing chemicals effective against the COVID-19 virus in Canada, Health Canada has put in place an interim policy that will allow quicker imports of products from the United States (U. S.).

Continue to read full announcement.

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Remember to be Safe

Brushing up on safe practices

SafetyDriven offers this reminder of good habits. Watch your speed and watch for hazards!

While operating under COVID-19 restrictions, you may have gotten used to highways with little traffic. Seeing that broad open road, maybe you saw a clear shot to put the hammer down and gain some time. Stop! As COVID-19 restrictions loosen, the traffic will be back. This SafetyDriven refresher will help you be ready. And remember—when it comes to safety, SafetyDriven – Transportation Safety Council of BC has your back.

Remember Not to Speed
According to ICBC, 89,000 people are injured and 287 killed in vehicle crashes in BC each year. Of those, 82 die from speed-related crashes (exceeding the speed limit, driving too fast for conditions; excessive speed over 40 km/h). Remember not to become a statistic.

Remember Your Good Habits
The COVID-19 protocols and practices have been around long enough to become habit. It takes 18 to 254 days to create a new habit. On average, a new habit becomes automatic behaviour in two months. You’ve built good habits through your training and experience. During this unprecedented time, you could find bad habits creeping into your work performance, especially if the pandemic is affecting your mental health. Be aware; remember your good habits.

Remember to Watch for Wildlife
Spring typically increases the amount of wildlife close to roads, especially young animals that haven’t learned to be wary. With less traffic, there is more than usual wildlife along the highways. It takes a lot of road to stop, so watch your speed. Remember: slowing down by as little as 5 km/h can make the difference between completing your trip or replacing your front end.

Remember to Watch for the Other Guy
A lot of people haven’t been driving much for the past few months, so their skills may be a little rusty; you’ll need to remember for them. With summer coming and typically more vehicles on the road, that lack of practice will combine with lost or confused drivers of overloaded vehicles distracted by kids and trying to listen to their GPS instructions. Remember to expect the unexpected and keep as much space around your truck as possible.

Remember to Stay Focused
It’s easy to let your mind wander when you’re behind the wheel. Remember to focus on the job and don’t let yourself be distracted by problems at home, loose stuff in your truck, hunger, discomfort and the other issues that filter into your mind. ICBC reports that an average of 76 people die each year in distracted driving crashes. A few seconds of inattention can be fatal to you or someone else, especially if you’ve increased your speed. And remember the hazards of stopping roadside. Between 2009 and 2018, four of the 13 roadside workers killed by vehicles were truck drivers.

The pandemic is still here
In your truck and at work sites, follow the COVID-19 protocols to keep you and your colleagues safe. These practices will be in place for awhile yet.

And remember— SafetyDriven – TSCBC provides free health and safety program building, training, and resources to the general trucking and moving and storage industries.

Visit SafetyDriven.ca for free online resources to help you make your company safer.

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Connecting Workers with Safety—From a Safe Distance

Finding new ways to communicate about safety and stay safe in an uncertain time.

We are all adjusting to the “new normal.” The COVID-19 situation is still changing. It is an uneasy background to businesses reopening after the shutdown and requires essential services, like transport, to work within distancing regulations and strict hygiene procedures.

But one thing that hasn’t changed is the importance of workplace safety. The challenge is to engage workers and provide safety information when physical distancing rules out face-to-face meetings.

We wanted to learn more about communicating safety under COVID-19 restrictions. We contacted three safety advisors at SafetyDriven — Shay Ryan, Darshan Gill, and Brad Zall. They agree that there are advantages to methods such as signage, handouts, conference calls, emails, texts, and online meetings.

“Different tools appeal to different audiences. Find out what catches the attention of your workers, making sure to keep the message brief and on-point,” says Ryan.

“While there is no one perfect solution, a combination of methods is likely what will be the best way to communicate,” Gill adds. “For industries such as trucking where workers are widespread, emails/newsletters or pre-recorded video messages are effective tools.” He echoes Ryan’s point about making communication focused and brief. “Keep the message clear and concise. There is so much information available these days that workers may have a hard time sorting through it all. By consistently delivering a clear and concise message, safety managers provide a trustworthy and consistent source of reliable information for workers to follow.”

Many businesses are replacing in-person meetings with online meetings or video conferencing.

“Zoom has become a very useful tool for meetings,” says Zall. He suggests becoming familiar with your video conferencing tools before a meeting. “And don’t forget to use the mute button when not speaking to limit noise interference,” he adds. Your colleagues probably won’t hold it against you if they can hear a child or pet, but it is distracting.

It is still important to have an agenda for your virtual meeting.

“Keep to the agenda; don’t drag out the meeting. Many find these kinds of meetings stressful and uncomfortable,” Ryan points out. “If an issue is brought up during the meeting that isn’t on the agenda and doesn’t need immediate attention, use a ‘parking lot’ to make note of issues for the next meeting and/or hold a special meeting for just that issue.”

“While the social aspect of being able to see your coworkers can certainly be a good thing, it is important to be aware of overdoing Zoom meetings,” Gill cautions. “As with in-person meetings, some online meetings can and should be replaced by emails. Not every meeting needs to be a Zoom meeting.” He also suggests that organizers send follow-up emails to add value to video meetings. “Very few attendees in Zoom meetings take notes and if the information is relevant and important, having it available after the meeting for reference can be an effective tool.” Soliciting feedback is still key.

“Whether through video meetings or emails/memos, provide workers with an opportunity to communicate their concerns and ask questions they may have about items related to the discussion,” says Gill.

Zall suggests that safety managers ask workers to confirm that they received the communication. Review the information with the worker to be sure there is no misunderstanding.

“Ask questions about the feedback they give you, take notes, and copy them in on all documentation based on their specific feedback,” says Ryan. “Keep going back to them to make sure any suggestions/issues/solutions they have provided remains from their perspective. If they have provided a solution for a safety issue, make sure to also get their feedback after the solution has been put in place, ensuring a control measure actually works for those who face that hazard.”

Finally, with all the distractions right now, how can safety managers ensure that safety remains everyone’s top priority?

Maintaining a presence with regular communication is vital, Zall says. “As a safety manager, you may not be meeting face-to-face with employees, but it’s important for workers to know you are still available.”

Ryan agrees: “Be present and available. Take the time to talk to people on both a professional and personal level, demonstrating that safety isn’t just legislated policies and procedures. Be mindful that everyone’s mind is elsewhere and not everyone will be convinced they can be at work without fear.”

Gill says safety managers can address fear by demonstrating they take the pandemic seriously and are taking measures to keep everyone safe. “When this is done effectively and workers are able to see that their health is being looked after, they are able to spend more time focusing on the safety/hazards of their actual job.”

For COVID-19 resources for trucking and moving and storage, visit SafetyDriven’s COVID-19 page.

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