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State of Safety 2017 - Incidents

Incidents involving work or equipment regulated by the Safety Standards Act are required to be reported to the appropriate provincial safety manager. We investigate many of these incidents to gain an understanding of safety hazards in BC and what actions can be taken to manage them. 

In 2017, Technical Safety BC received notification of 475 incidents involving regulated equipment or work. The causes of incidents vary greatly; however, the following are the influences we identified most frequently from our incident investigations:

Report and incident or hazard

  • Wear-out failures caused by owners operating equipment beyond its useful life contributed to more than 30% of incidents we investigated in 2017.
  • Approximately 20% of incidents were associated with users' failure to follow established procedures.
  • Over 15% of incidents in 2017 were attributed to ineffective servicing of regulated equipment. Owners or the qualified maintenance persons didn't complete the necessary tasks to keep equipment functioning properly.
  • Less frequent but often associated with serious consequences are those cases where safety circuits are defeated by operators and therefore cannot mitigate the impact of other failures.

Technical Safety BC uses the learnings from these failures to inform our risk prevention strategies. Incidents identified as UNDER INVESTIGATION were open at the time of report compilation.

Severe Incidents in 2017

Qty   Incident Type
5 Railway incidents
1 Carbon monoxide exposure
1 Conveyor incident
1 Ammonia release incident

Major Incidents

Qty        Incident Type
7 Fire incident
6 Railway incidents
2 Contact with energized high voltage equipment
2 Uncontrolled gas release
2 Component failure
1 Conveyor entanglement
1 Elevator entrapment
1 Fall from escalator handrail
1 Passenger carrier (gondola) collision with return station
1 Rider injured at waterslide exit area
1 Uncontrolled elevator acceleration

Incident Data

Incidents are defined as a failure of a regulated product, work or operation that caused damage or injury. Incidents involving work or equipment regulated by the Safety Standards Act are required to be reported to the appropriate provincial safety manager. Incidents reported to Technical Safety BC over the past three years are provided below:

Year Incident Data
2017  Incidents - All Technologies except Rail  (.CSV) | Incidents - Rail only (.CSV)
2016 Incidents - All Technologies   (.PDF)
2015 Incidents - All Technologies (.PDF)


Incident Investigations

Technical Safety BC investigates many of the incidents reported to us to learn of safety hazards in BC and what actions can be taken to manage those hazards. Technical Safety BC focuses its investigation effort on incidents where there is sufficient evidence to illustrate learning opportunities. In 2017, we completed a total of 68 incident investigations, compared to 48 in 2016. The results of these investigations are documented in our enhanced incident investigation summary report and organized by technology. We share the results of our incident investigations on our website, through our technical newsletters, and on social media to improve learning and engagement opportunities with the public and regulated workers. (Learn more about when we investigate an incident.)