Blog Post #820 – Mutual Aid Strengthened

Excerpt from the OH&S Canada magazine

The Canadian Energy Pipeline Association (CEPA) has launched a Mutual Emergency Assistance Agreement (MEAA) for its member companies, aimed at strengthening the existing emergency response process.

President and chief executive officer of the CEPA Brenda Kenny says the agreement would formalize and existing practice whereby member companies share resources during an emergency. “It would allow employees to get the job done by removing legal barriers that can sometimes cause delay,” she explains.

The agreement which came into effect January 01, 2014, means that during an emergency situation, member companies can call upon each other to share additional human resources, specialized response advice, equipment and tools that can increase their existing emergency response capabilities. “This industry agreement will help facilitate and even quicker response for protecting people, the environment and property, if necessary,” the CEPA said in a statement.

Under the agreement, the company that is requesting the assistance would have the primary responsibility of planning and directing the overall emergency response, with secondary responsibility on the assisting company. In addition, member companies have agreed to compensate the assisting company for all reasonable expenses, including travel, lodging, meals, wages, salaries and maintenance. The agreement will be used for major incidents, unless specific expertise is required.

“This MEAA is the full-meal deal,” said Zaid Saad, vice-president of safety and sustainability with CEPA.

My opinion

This seems to be a good call in the pipeline sector. More resources are made available to aid and assist an emergency situation and I think the other sectors can take this as an example to better emergency responses when one arises in their area. Mind you, the oil industry is a very collaborative group so to see this as an example of mutual cooperation, well, and it seems the right way to go.

Could you picture the same type of cooperation in the construction industry (I hope you are smiling here) or the industrial sector?

There is one in the mining sector and accidents/incidents around the world are published to the select few if they want to sign up and I have, personally, seen pictures of minor and major accidents as far away as Norway. Yes, cooperation it the right way to go. I wonder if Ontario will get to the same level of cooperation. Since I live here I do hope so.

Ensure your workplace is a safe place.

Remember – In Canada, “ALL Accidents are Preventable”

HRS Group Inc. has a great team that can help you with all your health and safety needs including ‘Due Diligence’ and ‘Standard Operating Procedures’. Contact Deborah toll free at 1-877-907-7744 or locally at 705-749-1259.

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‘Work’ and ‘Play’ safe.

Daniel L. Beal
CHSEP – Advanced Level
VP & Senior Trainer
HRS Group Inc.

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