On Friday, May 5, the County of Stettler hosted its annual Safety Day at Stettler Legion, organized by Quinton Beaumont, manager of health and safety and his team of health and safety coordinators, Ryan Hallett and Cara McKenzie.
With May 7 to 13 being the Emergency Preparedness Week, the county ensured that its staff was reminded of all safety measures and the importance of safety in the workplace.
“There are many measures that the county must follow,” Beaumont said. “Occupational Health and Safety Act, Code, and Regulation has set out minimums that must be followed and we strive to ensure that we at the County are setting our policies, safe work practices, and job procedures above those standards.”
Beaumont added that at the county’s joint health and safety committee meetings, they are continuously reviewing their manuals and procedures to keep them current with today’s methods.
At the event, Hallett spoke about hazard assessments and county incidents, which was followed by a three-part breakout session which included Hallet’s talk, “Spot the Hazards,” Beaumont’s “Workplace violence, and how to diffuse a bad situation,” and a first-aid refresher by Marty Rowland, manager of health and safety and training officer for the Emergency Response Team at Westermoreland and Sheerness mines. Rowland is also the training officer at Castor Fire Department.
Besides this there were three external speakers.
There was a talk on mental health awareness by Stettler FCSS’s Kirby McKnight; Gord Winkle who spoke on risk assessment weighing productivity and safety; and David and Jamie Dyck, speaking about the tanker explosion that David was involved in.
“Today’s message was about making safety real, taking risk management to the next level,” Winkle said. “When we set up to do work, we set up to do it well, and when we do it safely, it’s just a win-win proposition.”
Beaumont said that safety measures in the county are followed through mentoring, and ensuring that the improvements that are suggested are being looked into and followed up on.
“One of the challenges that I face on a regular basis is taking into stride everyone’s perspective of safety, because not everyone takes safety as seriously as it should be taken,” Beaumont explained. “I keep telling my co-workers ‘I want you to go home to your family with ten fingers and ten toes, and come back the next day to me the same way.’”