It is the responsibility of the employer to ensure facilities are maintained in safe working condition by regularly conducting inspections, and conducting preventive maintenance and corrective maintenance.
The employer must assign facility maintenance to competent employees who are experienced, trained and knowledgeable. Apprentices or new workers shall be trained, mentored and supervised by a competent person.
Workers involved with the facility should be consulted on the development of safe work procedures and lockout/tag-out programs.
What should be included in facilities inspections?
- Machine safeguards for all moving parts that may cause entanglement
- Safety features on all machines, equipment and devices (e.g., interlocks, emergency stop buttons, dead man's switches)
- Verifying that workers are using lockout/tag-out inventories
- Ensuring that workers are following safe work procedures while doing maintenance
- Verifying that preventive and corrective maintenance is being carried out by a responsible worker
- Ensuring there are no exposed electrical wires, splices or faulty electrical panels
- Ensuring that flammable materials are not stored near heat sources
- Ensuring that chemicals are stored properly and Safety Data Sheets (SDS) are available
- Verifying that worker training records are up-to-date
- Emergency equipment like first aid kits, eyewash stations and chemical spill kits
- Ensuring that warning signs and audio/visual alarms on equipment are working
Preventing breakdowns in facilities requires an effective preventive maintenance program in the workplace. Facilities maintenance will not only prevent production loss but ensure worker safety.
Please see Manitoba Workplace Safety and Health Regulation Part 16, Machines, Tools and Robots, for more information.