The Administrative Labor Tribunal requires road marshals to undergo more in-depth health and safety training

The Administrative Labor Court has just ruled that road marshals are “exposed to multiple dangers” and that as a result, they will have to undergo more in-depth training in health and safety at the construction site.

Administrative judge Yolande Bernier thus found herself in favor of the Steelworkers union, which represents road flaggers, as well as the Commission for Standards, Equity, Health and Safety at Work (CNESST) which advocated more in-depth training for these road marshals in health and safety on construction sites.

The employer, Signalisation de l’Estrie, argued that road marshals did not work “on” construction sites, but “around” construction sites. According to the employer, they were therefore not required to take the General Health and Safety on Construction Sites course.

The employer’s representative argued that “the requirement to follow the 30 hours of the General Health and Safety on Construction Sites course, spread over two weekends, would cause recruitment difficulties, since it would discourage candidates from applying.” as a traffic signalman,” reports the Court.

The employer also explained that the training given to road flaggers lasts approximately three hours, online, given by the Association québécoise des transports, and that it must be renewed every three years. The employer claimed to also have a five-day training and support program on current construction sites.

After hearing the evidence, the Court ruled that these road flaggers needed to be better trained, given the risks to their safety.

These are not only subject to the dangers posed by road users, but also to those linked to “the presence of trucks and heavy machinery entering and leaving the site, which pass close to the road flaggers”, underlines the administrative judge.

“The Court considers that road flaggers are exposed to multiple dangers around the work zone and exempt the employer from its obligation to ensure that they have followed the General health and safety course on construction sites would go against the purpose of the LSST” (Occupational Health and Safety Act).

He concludes that road marshals carry out their work on a construction site and “therefore must follow the General Health and Safety on Construction Sites course”.

The Court even encourages the industry to take more initiative in this area. “It would be interesting if those involved in the road signaling sector worked to develop specific training for road traffic signallers in order to reduce their exposure to the dangers they face. »

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