Occupational health and safety laws grant health and safety inspectors with exceptionally broad powers to inspect workplaces and enforce health and safety standards. They may attend a workplace as part of a routine visit or a targeted “blitz” checking for specific matters such as protection from falls, trenching, electrical hazards, machine guarding, material handling, young workers and other identified high risk issues. They can write demanding orders that may have rigid time requirements for compliance, require employers to engage professional services, or that stop work at part or all of the workplace. Health and safety inspectors also have the power to commence prosecution or impose heavy penalties and there is no need for an accident or injury to occur before a prosecution is commenced or a penalty imposed. In the current climate, any safety-related inspection by health and safety regulators may result in astonishingly high penalties, fines and fine surcharges. When faced with a health & safety inspection, it is critical that there is a managed and measured response in order to best protect the interests of the organization and its staff.
In this webinar, a former health and safety prosecutor will discuss:
- The circumstances that bring OHS inspectors to your door;
- Characteristics of OHS inspectors and their powers;
- Managing the heavy-handed inspector and over-zealous worker; and
- Risk reduction through effective management of an inspection.
Learn some helpful tips that could advance your organization’s response to a health and safety inspection.
Jeremy Warning – Heenan Blaikie LLP
Jeremy is a partner in the Labour and Employment Group and a member of the firm’s national OHS & Workers’ Compensation Practice Group. He advises the firm’s provincial, national and international clients on a full range of labour and employment issues with a particular emphasis on occupational health and safety matters. He provides proactive and strategic advice following workplace accidents and when regulators are at the door. Jeremy also represents the firm’s clients before the provincial and federal courts, administrative tribunals, boards of arbitration, and in Coroner’s inquests. Jeremy is a former Ministry of Labour prosecutor and has practiced health and safety law for more than 10 years. He is a co-author of the Annotated Occupational Health and Safety Act, a leading Ontario text, and is listed in The Best Lawyers in Canada directory as a leading occupational health and safety lawyer.