Cowichan mills prepare for safety assessments
Sawmills in the Cowichan Valley will be looking at safety procedures as part of WorkSafeBC's order following the explosion at the Lakeland mill in Prince George that killed two men.
Western Forest Products owns several mills in Cowichan, and a company spokesperson, Mackenzie Leine, said they have been assessing the risks since the explosion in Burns Lake four months ago.
“After the Babine fire, we did an extensive amount of work on fire risk," she said. "We’re continually improving, it’s not just developing a plan and then implementing that plan, it’s developing a plan, implementing a plan and continually improving it.”
And now, as investigators delve into the dangers of milling trees affected by the pine beetle, there’s a new fear about combustible dust. Leine said they are aware of it and will wait to hear more from WorkSafeBC.
“From a safety perspective, dust was originally seen as a respiratory risk, and is now being seen as a fire risk and we’re doing everything we can to ensure proper maintenance and housekeeping in our facilities mitigates any of those risks.”
The investigation into the Prince George explosion continues.
SunFM News is waiting to hear from WorkSafeBC how Cowichan mills may be affected by the safety inspection orders.
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