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WorkSafeBC visiting B.C. wineries to help employers prepare for seasonal re-opening

Published on: May 14, 2021

Richmond, B.C. — WorkSafeBC has launched an inspectional and consultative initiative at wineries, cideries, and craft breweries in B.C.’s interior, in advance of the upcoming tourist season.

The initiative will be primarily completed in B.C.’s interior and will focus on establishments with tasting rooms that may see an increase in customers in the workplaces. The inspections and consultations will confirm that up-to-date COVID-19 Safety Plans are in place and implemented effectively, and controls are in place to protect workers from COVID-19 transmission.

"With warmer weather here and summer fast approaching, these businesses will likely see increased activity in all three areas of their operations: agriculture, manufacturing, and customer visits," says Al Johnson, Head of Prevention Services at WorkSafeBC. "As the number of workers increases, manufacturing ramps up, and tasting rooms attract more visitors over the summer, we need to ensure these employers have updated and effective COVID-19 Safety Plans in place to protect their diverse workforces."

WorkSafeBC will conduct approximately 40 field inspections and 35 consultations in the sector over the next three weeks.

Since the beginning of 2021, WorkSafeBC has been conducting inspectional initiatives targeting specific industries. These initiatives are informed by WorkSafeBC risk assessments and employer effectiveness surveys, as well as COVID-19 claim numbers, information from B.C.’s health authorities, and seasonal and temporal factors.

"We want to ensure we are working with B.C. wineries, cideries and brew pubs in order to help these businesses prepare for a safe and successful summer," says Johnson.

All employers in B.C. are required to have a COVID-19 Safety Plan in place that assesses the risks to workers and implements measures to prevent the transmission of COVID-19 in the workplace. The plan must be reviewed and updated as conditions change.

To assist employers, WorkSafeBC has developed the resource: Reviewing and updating your COVID-19 safety plan: A guide for employers.

Key Facts

  • As of May 8, 2021, WorkSafeBC has conducted 27,248 COVID-19-related inspections and 4,887 consultations.
  • A total of 3,099 COVID-19-related orders have been issued for health and safety violations.
  • WorkSafeBC has received 34,755 COVID-19-related enquiries to its Prevention Information Line since the start of the pandemic.

For more information, contact:

Media Relations, WorkSafeBC
Tel: 604.276.5157