Abatement Contractors Working in British Columbia
The Workers Compensation Act of British Columbia was created to protect all workers as governed by the BC Ministry of Labour. The Workers Compensation Board (WCB) also known as “WorkSafeBC” administers the Act on behalf of the Ministry of Labour. The Act gives WorkSafeBC the legal authority to create regulations such as the Occupational Health & Safety (OH&S) Regulation and enforce the regulatory requirements by WorkSafeBC officers.
As the property owner, employer, property management group and/or general contractor you have the responsibility or “due diligence” to provide and maintain a safe working environment for all workers because you are the owner of and responsible for any hazards that may exist. Being unaware of hazards, especially without looking (not showing due diligence) or being negligent of the law is never a defensible excuse.
Abatement Contractors need to get it right because they represent you and your interests. Anyone hiring an Abatement Contractor should ensure the contractor adheres to the following:
- Any quote or estimate you receive, except for removal of vermiculite insulation in an attic, is based off a Hazardous Material Survey conducted by a qualified person or Environmental Consultant. A Hazardous Material (HazMat) Survey is required prior to starting any construction work on your property. The requirement to have a Hazmat Survey is found in section 20.112 under Part 20 Construction, Excavation and Demolition of the Occupational Health & Safety Regulation.
- The contractor you hire is qualified to do abatement work. Proof of qualifications include: Commercial General Liability Coverage Insurance with added Special Risk Insurance for Asbestos, Mould, etc.
- Is Active and in Good Standing with WorkSafeBC. A clearance Letter may be obtained by anyone online at www.worksafebc.com/en/insurance/why-clearance-letter/get-clearance-letter
- Follows the regulations set out in the Occupational Health & Safety (OH&S) Regulations of the Workers Compensation Act of British Columbia.
- Provides the following documentation:
- Files on behalf of the registered property owner, a British Columbia Generator (BCG) number, with the Ministry of Environment for disposal of hazardous material exceeding 1000 kg
- Supplies and completes Waste Manifests as per Ministry of Environment Regulations for each bin leaving your property
- Conducts a Hazard Risk Assessment (HRA), prepares a Site-Specific Safe Work Procedure (SSWP) and submits a Notice of Project (NOP) to WorkSafeBC 48 hours prior to project start date.