Beginning April 1, 2017, the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations will be applying Safety Accord Forest Enterprise Certification Standard, known in the B.C. forest sector as SAFE, to specific contract areas.
Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations Steve Thomson made the announcement this morning during his presentation to the annual Truck Loggers Association convention in Vancouver.
SAFE is an industry standard developed by those in the B.C. forest sector and administered by the BC Forest Safety Council. The program uses industry recognized audit protocols to improve participating companies’ safety cultures and to evaluate their current safety programs.
Upon meeting the standard, companies receive SAFE certification numbers and are listed on the BC Forest Safety Council website.
Contractors interested in bidding on affected ministry contracts on or after April 1, 2017, should immediately begin preparing themselves to meet the standard by contacting the BC Forest Safety Council to get started: http://www.bcforestsafe.org/safe_companies/registration.html
For wildfire emergency and other emergency response, SAFE will be treated as a preferred requirement.
The ministry also holds itself to the same standard, achieving SAFE certification last year. BC Timber Sales has applied SAFE certification requirements for those bidding on contracts for almost seven years. Expansion of SAFE certification requirements across the ministry fulfils an action item in B.C.’s forest sector competitiveness agenda. Read more about how the Province is working to keep B.C.’s forest sector competitive: http://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/industry/forestry/competitive-forest-industry.
More information on public and worker health and safety and ministry areas affected by the new SAFE certification requirements can be found here: http://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/industry/natural-resource-use/doing-business-on-the-land-base/public-and-worker-health-and-safety