Temporary Heating Safety

It is common for construction sites to use temporary heating devices to allow work to continue through Canada’s cold winters, so it is important to be aware of the safety hazards and prevention measures that can be applied to this device.  

While plenty of the safety regulations around temporary heaters may seem obvious, it appears that they can still pose as a serious potential safety hazard. It is of utmost important to realize that it is up to the person who rents the device to determine if it is approved and certified.

After confirming the certification of the heater, there are several conditions to consider about the implementation of the device. The location of the heater must be well ventilated and the area should have carbon monoxide detectors to indicate if there is a higher than normal presence of CO. The heaters should be turned off by the last person to leave the area; if the heater must be used throughout the night, there must be a fire watch authority on site.

Combustible and flammable materials (canvas, wood or debris) need to be stored a safe distance away from the heater. Gas cylinders also need to be stored outside in an upright position, secured, to ensure that they do not fall over. Keep cylinders protected from mobile equipment and ensure that the area is a non-smoking area.

When not in use, turn off the gas supply using the cylinder valve. Keep a fire extinguisher close in the case of emergency.

While these tips will help to keep a job site safer when using a temporary heating system, it is absolutely crucial that all employees working around the device should be properly trained on how to use the device safely. When introducing a temporary heating device, implementing frequent toolbox talks would be recommended. 

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