Toronto – (October 10, 2013) – Three industry leaders were recognized by Professional Engineers Ontario (PEO) during a reception at Queen’s Park Wednesday evening for their commitment to putting worker safety and process reliability first.
Bruce Power L.P., COM DEV International Products and Vale Canada Ltd. are among a group of Ontario businesses who are taking proactive efforts to voluntarily comply with the pending repeal of section 12(3)(a) of the Professional Engineers Act.
This past June, the Ontario government deferred its September 1, 2013 proclamation date for this legislation, despite three years of transition planning with stakeholders since the legislature approved the change. Although a new effective date has yet to be set, PEO has invested nearly $500,000 to support Ontario businesses in becoming ready for the change.
Section 12(3)(a) currently allows non-engineers to do certain work that only an engineer is qualified to do. Ontario is the only jurisdiction in Canada with an exception that allows non -licensed employees without engineering supervision to do certain acts of engineering on equipment or machinery used to produce products for their employer in their employer’s facilities.
“Despite the government’s recent decision, these three organizations have shown a tremendous commitment to increasing workplace safety and process reliability standards by having accountable, PEO licence holders in place to oversee their process equipment design,” said PEO President Annette Bergeron, MBA, P.Eng.
"Bruce Power applauds the leadership exhibited by PEO with respect to driving for continuous improvement to make Ontario’s workplaces safer”, said Chief Engineer and Senior Vice President Engineering Gary Newman, P.Eng.
“These improvements are consistent with our core value of ‘Safety First’ at Bruce Power and it was principally for this reason that Bruce Power chose to continue to embrace the need to pro-actively transition to this new licensing structure”, added James Scongack, Vice President Corporate Affairs.
“Once the changes to the engineers act were announced, the management team at COM DEV recognized the opportunity presented by PEO to facilitate licensing at both the P.Eng. and limited licence levels to the maximum number of people”, said Vice President Engineering & Quality Nigel Doran, P.Eng. “COM DEV highly values the diversity of our workforce reflected by the large number of foreign-trained engineering graduates and with the assistance of PEO we are now in a position where most of our foreign-trained and Canadian-trained people have submitted licence applications and are proceeding through the licensing process. PEO has supported this initiative through on-site workshops, waiving of application fees and a willingness to listen to the needs of both the employees and the employer.”
“At Vale, our most important value is ‘Life Matters Most,’ and our first and most important priority is the health and safety of our workers,” said Joel Montgomery, P.Eng., manager of central & specialty engineering at Vale’s Ontario Operations. “Through the leadership and partnership of organizations such as Professional Engineers Ontario, we continue to put measures in place to achieve our goal of zero harm in our workplace.”
Only PEO licence holders have the experience and training to design and oversee the most complex manufacturing processes – efficiently and safely. With more workplace injuries in Ontario’s manufacturing sector than in any other industry in Ontario and with more workplace fatalities in Ontario manufacturing than in the rest of Canada, more has to be done to prevent industrial accidents. Recently Health and Safety Ontario issued a safety bulletin in response to a worker death at RJM Farms Inc in Essa, Ontario, earlier this year. The bulletin’s five steps to prevent injuries within farming operations call for the involvement of an engineer in both the design and installation of farm machinery. This is a positive step forward and implementing the repeal of section 12(3)(a) will further bolster production safety in all industrial facilities.
“Engineering is regulated to serve and protect the public interest, and PEO licence holders are accountable to PEO for doing just that by maintaining a high quality in their work and also by considering its overall implications. Bringing this mindset into the design of the production process should be cost -effective for industry by lessening workplace illness or injury and associated workplace insurance claims, and by minimizing retrofitting, downtime and equipment replacement,” said Michael Price, P.Eng., MBA, FEC, acting chief executive officer and registrar of PEO.
About Professional Engineers Ontario
Through the Professional Engineers Act, PEO governs over 80,000 licence and certificate holders and regulates professional engineering in Ontario to serve and protect the public. Professional engineering safeguards life, health, property, economic interests, the public welfare and the environment. Professional engineers can be identified by the P.Eng. after their names. Visit www.peo.on.ca.
For additional information, please contact:
David Smith, Manager, Communications
Tel: 416-840-1068; 800-339-3716, ext.1068