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If you disagree with a claim-related decision, you can request a review by the IRO by:

  • Completing the Issues Resolution form and forwarding it to the IRO at WorkSafeNB at:
    1 Portland Street,
    P.O. Box 160,
    Saint John, N.B.
    E2L 3X9
  • Contacting the IRO directly by phone or email. 1 800 999-9775 (option#5)

Date: May 22, 2018

Jack Callaghan, a professor in University of Waterloo’s department of kinesiology, has found that the ideal sit-stand ratio lies somewhere between 1:1 and 1:3. It is recommended that you begin using your standing desk slowly − start with 20 minutes at a time. Also make sure you’re using a gel mat. 

The ideal is to listen to your body. The key to success in any sedentary workplace is to avoid staying in the same position for extended periods of time.

Date: May 15, 2018

The OHS Act requires the employer to post a copy of the OHS Act and regulations, which include:

First, you should note that WorkSafeNB accepts "electronic" postings for the Act and regulations, provided that workers have easy access to these documents. WorkSafeNB has a web link to all of its OHS legislation, readily available for anyone with Internet access.

In addition, you also need to post the joint health and safety committee (JHSC) minutes and the names of the JHSC members or health and safety representatives, as well as any code of practice established or adopted by the employer.

With respect to First Aid Regulation 2004-130, you are required to post an emergency communication plan, the names of your trained first aiders and signs indicating the location of first aid kits.

The posting requirements outlined in General Regulation 91-191 are task-specific. They can be found in sub sections 51(4), 76(3), etc. You should review the regulations to determine which ones apply to you.

In summary, WorkSafeNB will accept electronic access of the Act if:

  • all reasonable steps are taken to keep the computers in active working order,
  • paper copies of the legislation and other required documents are made available on the request of an employee, and
  • training is provided in accessing computer-stored information to the affected employees including members of the joint health and safety committee, if any, or a health and safety representative, if any.

Date: April 17, 2018

Legislation under the Occupational Health and Safety Act requires every employer with 20 or more employees regularly employed at a place of employment to have a JHSC. Although it refers to ‘place of employment,’ the requirement is specific to an individual employer. If employers in a building are not related – like a commercial complex with many small retail outlets – then we would not require a JHSC for that workplace, provided none of the employers has more than 19 employees. In your case, even though the owner of the two firms is the same, we would not require a JHSC if they have different employer names and numbers.

Date: March 26, 2018

First, you need to determine whether or not your workplace requires an eyewash station. If the answer is yes, then Sections 11(1) and 11(2) of Regulations 91-191 apply. The regulation requires employers to provide emergency showers or eyewash fountains when a worker’s skin or eyes may come into contact with harmful chemicals. It also requires the shower or fountain comply with the requirements of ANSI Z3 58.1-1990, American National Standard for Emergency Eyewash and Shower Equipment, or an equivalent standard. This standard describes the specifications and requirements for emergency eyewashes and showers in New Brunswick. Our Emergency Showers and Eyewash Stations Guide and poster may also be helpful.

Date: March 26, 2018

Requirements of the New Brunswick Occupational Health and Safety Act require employers to address health and safety hazards at the workplace, including buildup of ice and snow. Section 102(8) of the General Regulations 91-191 states: “An employer and a contractor shall each keep outdoor passageways from becoming slippery by removing ice or snow and using materials such as ashes, sand or salt where necessary.” If an employee were to fall and injure themselves because the outdoor passageways were not kept from becoming slippery, they could be eligible for compensation. If you have raised the matter with your employer and it still has not been resolved, you can contact WorkSafeNB by calling 1 800 999-9775 and file a complaint. Normally, a health and safety officer would investigate. If you wish for your complaint to remain anonymous, we will respect your wish.

Date: March 26, 2018

Section 8 of General Regulation 91-191 specifies the requirements for food and rest periods: “An employer shall allow an employee at least one-half hour for food and rest after each five consecutive hours of work.” We have developed three interpretations for Section 8. They are:

These interpretations should answer your question. You can also share this information with your employer to help you reach an agreement on breaks.

Date: March 26, 2018

The Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Act requires the employer to post a copy of the OHS Act and regulations, which include General Regulation 91-191, Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System 88-221, First Aid 2004-130 and Code of Practice for Working Alone 92-133. In addition, the first aid regulation requires you to post an emergency communication plan and the names of your trained first aid providers. You also need to post the joint health and safety committee (JHSC) minutes and the names of your JHSC members, as well as any reports from a WorkSafeNB health and safety officer. While these are the common posting requirements, you can consult the regulations to see if others apply to your workplace. Please note that WorkSafeNB allows you to post these documents electronically under certain provisions.

Date: March 26, 2018

Yes, you can lock your office door. Since your company requires you to work by yourself, it must have a procedure on working alone, according to New Brunswick’s Occupational Health and Safety Act  Code of Practice for Working Alone. In addition, every employer with 20 or more employees regularly employed must have a joint health and safety committee (JHSC). If your workplace has a JHSC, it must be involved in developing the company’s code of practice for working alone. Our Health and Safety Orientation Guide For Employers has a sample of a working alone policy. You should also raise your concern with the JHSC, if your company has one. You can also find useful information on working alone in the Guide to OHS Legislation.

Date: March 26, 2018

It is difficult for us to answer whether a company would be liable in the example you provide. You and your employer may want to seek legal advice. However, the employer should give the employee the option of taking a vacation day or making up time lost if the employee chooses not to come to work for safety concerns.

A workplace can be proactive by developing policies and procedures to guide both employees and the employer when situations like this occur. They could include information as to when the office may close (for example, when universities or government offices close or when the Department of Transportation snowplows are removed from service). They could also address available options to employees when the office remains open but local road conditions are too treacherous to travel home, as well as remuneration for lost work days. WorkSafeNB can provide examples of policies to address this matter on request.

Finally, driving in adverse weather conditions may be unavoidable. In this case, you may want to consider supplementary driver training that addresses driving in bad weather. Most driver training schools have specialized programs. A well-maintained vehicle equipped with winter tires will also improve safety in circumstances where driving in poor weather conditions cannot be avoided.

Date: March 26, 2018

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