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What Matters Most Quiz

Both workers and employers have a responsibility to work together when it comes to safety in the workplace. What actions will you take to make your workplace safe?

Are you:

or
Click if you're a worker
Click if you're an employer

Question 1

As you walk into work in the morning, you hear a few co-workers chatting about how things seem more dangerous at work lately, and that as far as they're concerned it's the employer's fault. The IRS (Internal Responsibility System) is a part of health and safety law. Does it say that everyone at your workplace shares responsibility for keeping each other healthy and safe?

Yes
No

Your answer: Yes

That's correct! The IRS principle says we all have a level of shared responsibility for health and safety.

Your answer: No

It's 'Yes.' The IRS principle says we all have a level of shared responsibility for health and safety.

As you arrive at work in the morning, you are greeted by an email from head office. There's a print budget reduction and they ask if you really need to post the safety policy - after all, you only have eight workers. How do you respond?

No problem, we can email it.
Yes, we must post - it's required.

Your answer: No problem

Actually, it must be posted. A policy is required in any workplace of five or more workers, and must be prominently posted.

Your answer: Yes

Yes, exactly. A policy is required in any workplace of five or more workers, and must be prominently posted.

Question 2

Going into your work area you notice that a co-worker isn't wearing his hardhat. There is a clear overhead hazard. What should you do?

Remind him to wear it
Give him your hardhat

Your answer: Remind him to wear it

Yes. Part of a healthy culture is looking out for each other. Remind your co-worker about the fact PPE is needed. In fact, he could be fined for refusing to wear it.

Your answer: Give him your hardhat

In doing so, you'd be putting yourself at risk. Gently remind your co-worker to put on a hardhat.

Your first meeting of the day is an investigation of a serious incident from last week - exploring a piece of equipment and a guard that was propped open. As the employer, is the main reason for an investigation finding out who's to blame?

Yes – finding who's at fault and applying a penalty is required for a workplace investigation.
No – a proper investigation shows all the breakdowns and how they'll be corrected

Your answer: Yes

The right answer is 'no'. Investigating how health and safety measures failed will never be about one person, or one rule, or one piece of equipment. These incident investigations need to be about finding fixes, not fixing blame. To learn more visit worksafeforlife.ca and the OHS Division's website.

Your answer: No

That's correct! A good investigation strives to examine the root causes of all of the factors that resulted in the incident. The outcome of any investigation needs to be about finding fixes, not fixing blame. To learn more visit worksafeforlife.ca and the OHS Division's website.

Question 3

Later in the morning you have coffee with a friend from another section – you're surprised he hasn't been trained yet on new equipment that he has to use. Safety training is both a requirement and an expectation in Nova Scotia safety law. True or False?

True
False

Your answer: True

True. Safety training is an expectation of some sections of the OHS Act and a requirement of some others, including the First Aid and Workplace Safety Regulations.

Your answer: False

The answer is true. Safety training is an expectation of some sections of the OHS Act and a requirement of some others, including the First Aid and Workplace Health & Safety Regulations.

You have a rare lunch meeting with the owner of your business. Given the serious incident about the guard being propped open, what should you discuss with her?

The details of your investigation
The quality of the equipment
The need for a stronger safety culture in the first place

Your answer: The details of your investigation

While your business owner may well be interested in the details, especially in a small workplace, you can likely handle those at the management level. As a business owner, she is in a position to build real cultural change, where safety is a core competency for all managers.

Your answer: The quality of the equipment

Quality equipment is key, and you can address that sometime. But the key focus for your workplace leader is the underlying issue – what is it about the safety culture that led to the guard being propped open, and how can your business owner demonstrate leadership in changing that?

Your answer: The need for a stronger safety culture in the first place

Yes. Safety starts at the top. A visible response from your leader, supported by a commitment to build a culture of safety in the workplace where shortcuts are not an option, is where your workplace's leadership focus should be – while you focus on the actual incident.

Question 4

On your way to a meeting you walk past that piece of equipment and notice that one of the guards has been removed. What do you do?

Lock out the machine
Put it back in place, if you are qualified to do so
Report it to your supervisor
All of the above

Your answer: Lock out the machine

Yes, that's a good start. Machinery should never operate without proper guards in place.

Your answer: Fix it immediately

It's true that you need to address the hazard – but only once the machine has been locked out.

Your answer: Report it to your supervisor

Yes, a serious issue like this needs to be reported. But first, you need to lock out the machine and address the immediate hazard.

Your answer: All of the above

That's right. Hazard identification and control hinges on addressing the immediate hazard safely and then reporting it so that it can be investigated and prevented from occurring again.

In the afternoon, you're leading a toolbox talk on fall protection. Your summer students are starting and you want to train them on fall arrest. Why is this important?

It could save their life
Young people may not be aware of the hazards in their job
It's the law – training is mandatory
All of the above

Your answer: It could save their life

Yes, it could, and that's the most important reason. But there are other reasons, too.

Your answer: Young people may not be aware of the hazards in their job

It's true that young workers may not have the experience of others, and may need more support with everything related to the job, including safety. But there's a better answer.

Your answer: It's the law – training is mandatory

Yes, that's true, it is. As of June 12, 2013, companies on a worksite with a risk of falling from a height of more than three metres, must show proof of adequate fall-protection training. But that's not the only reason it's important.

Your answer: All of the above

Of course. It could save their life, and, all new workers must be trained about anything that can hurt them in the workplace. And fall protection regulations were strengthened in 2013 - companies on a worksite with a risk of falling from a height of more than three metres, must show proof of adequate fall-protection training.

Question 5

At the end of the day, you notice some stiffness in your back and realize it's from working in the same position for extended periods of time. You make a note to:

A. Vary your position more often
B. Talk to your boss about an ergonomics assessment of your workstation
C. Book a massage
D. Both A and B

Your answer: A. Vary your position more often

This is good practice, along with taking breaks, stretching, changing the table height, and moving tools and equipment within easy reach.

Your answer: B. Talk to your boss about an ergonomics assessment of your workstation

You are your employer's most valuable asset. An ergonomic assessment allows for quality work to be completed safely and easily by fitting the job to the worker. Together, employers and workers can help make workplaces safer.

Your answer: C. Book a massage

Workplace safety is about getting to the root of musculoskeletal issues, or strains and sprains. Simple changes in workplace design can reduce the likelihood of injury in the first place, eliminating the need for treatment. There's a better answer.

Your answer: D. Both A and B

On their own, each answer is correct, but both are better! Simple changes reduce the likelihood of injury, improve the job at hand and allow quality work to be completed safely and easily.

As your day wraps up, you notice a hardhat that an employee turned into you, because he felt it was defective. You'd given him a replacement at the time, but he wasn't struck on the colour, and is rather attached to the one he feels is defective. As you inspect the hardhat, you determine that it's a minor issue with the sizing strap that would be relatively easy to fix.

Train the employee in the use of the hardhat he prefers, and take back the one he doesn't like
Do nothing, and give the hardhat to the next employee that needs it

Your answer: Train the employee

Yes. Further, under the Occupational Health and Safety General regulations, where a person identifies any defect in personal protective equipment or devices that may impair the adequacy of the equipment or devices, the employer shall ensure that the personal protective equipment or devices are not used until they are repaired. While repair wasn't necessary in this case, you do have a requirement to train the worker on the use of PPE.

Your answer: Do nothing

Technically, you could do this, as you've replaced the hardhat. But your response here speaks to your company's safety culture. There's always a chance the worker will be less likely to wear it. Formally, under the regulations, where a person identifies any defect in personal protective equipment or devices that may impair the adequacy of the equipment or devices, the employer shall ensure that the personal protective equipment or devices are not used until they are repaired.

All Done.

You got them all correct!

Not bad, but you might want to review some aspects of your safety knowledge.

Safety awareness and knowledge leads to safer outcomes. Under the Internal Responsibility System, both workers and employers have a responsibility to work together when it comes to safety in the workplace. It's rarely one action that leads to an injury - there are always contributing factors.

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