Safety level

Did you know that the top three injuries in the forestry industry are:

  • Sprains and strains
  • Fractures & dislocations
  • Concussions and head injuries

The forestry sector has been a significant part of Nova Scotia’s economy for generations.

Thanks to an ongoing focus on workplace safety from employers and workers, the number of serious injuries in the forestry sector has steadily declined.

In 2022 there were 14 time-loss injuries in the forestry sector. There were 19 time-loss injuries in 2020. The number of serious injuries has been steadily trending downward. For example, in 2006 and 2007 there were about 60 lost-time injuries in the forestry sector.

The Forestry Safety Society is working to reduce the impact of workplace injury in Nova Scotia’s forestry industry.

Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety

Working to Well - Return to Work website

Physical Hazards

Rough, uneven, unstable, slippery or elevated work surfaces or areas? Understand and follow industry codes of practice
Working alone? Assess areas for stability
Machinery with moving parts? Set up a communication system
Getting in and out of elevated cabs or seats? Provide slip-resistant floor surfaces
Compressed air and hydraulic equipment? Proper maintenance and guarding of equipment
Working on or operating loaders? Proper handling of materials and tools
Driving in extreme weather or on uneven terrain? Proper personal protective equiment (PPE) and proper work clothing
Roadside adjustments or repair to vehicle? Safe work practice for traffic control and visibility
Moving and coupling heavy equipment? Proper lift and transfer tools and practices
Exposure to the hazards of other work sites? Get safety orientation to customer hazards
Securing awkward and unstable loads? Proper load-securing tools and practices


Ergonomic Hazards

Repetitive work motions? Understand and follow safe work practices
Forceful motions of the hands and wrists,,arms and shoulders, knees and legs? Training, safe work practice and PPE
Akward working positions? Proper maintenance of tools and equipment
Equipment/tools that vibrate? Hazard assessment process for work areas and tasks
Uneven/unstable work areas? When lifting and moving heavy objects, keep load between shoulders and knees
Long periods of standing or sitting? Involve workers in the design of safe work processes
Heavy and awkward loads to lift and transfer? Proper lift and transfer tools and practices


Environmental Hazards

High noise levels? PPE for eyes, ears and head
Temperature extremes? Safe work practice and dress for extreme outdoor conditions, including presence of biting insects and animals
Wet environments? Rest periods in comfortable areas
Chemicals or toxic fumes? Water supply for drinking and washing
Biting insects, rodents or wildlife? Toilet facilities
Breathing and lung irritants? Adequate airflow
Working around unstable objects? Signage and proper load-securing tools and practices
Skin irritations? Safe work practice, training, PPE and water supply for washing