29 October 2013

Final Approval Granted for Limited Scope Electrical Work Practitioner Training Program

New Westminster, BC, October 29, 2013—BC Safety Authority (BCSA) today announced that the association for Applied Science Technologists and Technicians of BC (ASTTBC) has completed development of its Electrical Work Practitioner (EWP) training program. The Provincial Safety Manager has reviewed the materials submitted by ASTTBC on October 16th, 2013, and has determined that the programs for EL1 and EL2 certification meet all conditions imposed by BCSA. The Provincial Safety Manager has concluded that these training programs will promote enhanced safety for the electrical industry and the public, and allow uniform enforcement and compliance with the Safety Standards Act. Final approval has been granted to ASTTBC to operate its EWP training programs for Class EL1 and EL2 certification.

Final recognition of the ASTTBC program means that ASTTBC will now be able to implement its processes and procedures for registered ASTTBC technologists and technicians to become certified as having completed training that will allow them to be eligible to apply for a BCSA credential to perform a restricted scope of electrical work within specialized fields.

In authorizing this program, the Provincial Safety Manager has stated that individuals who obtain a BCSA credential under a recognized training program will not be granted broad certification as electrical workers, and will not be a replacement for electrical workers who have obtained credentials issued under existing training programs, such as the electrical Red Seal program. ASTTBC-trained workers will only be granted permission to perform tasks involving electrical work being performed under a permit and under the supervision of a Field Safety Representative, and only where the work is within the scope of specialized training for technologists and technicians. Employers will still be required to utilize qualified electrical workers where the work requires the broad scope of training and experience gained by qualified electrical workers.

Under the terms and conditions for approval, ASTTBC will be required to continue consulting with industry stakeholders to identify opportunities for continued program enhancement. ASTTBC will also be required to conduct education programs for employers of technologists and technicians to promote improved understanding on the scope and restrictions for performance of electrical work by technologists and technicians. Requirements for continued education and professional development promote an improved understanding for employers, supervisors, and workers, and allow employers to make informed choices about electrical safety at their facilities.

“The ability to recognize and identify technologists and technicians who are authorized to perform this limited scope of work, enables uniform monitoring and enforcement of regulatory requirements for performance of electrical work under the Safety Standards Act,” said Ulrich Janisch, Provincial Safety Manager – Electrical. “These training programs will promote enhanced safety for the electrical industry and the public.”

ASTTBC members completing the ASTTBC’s EWP training program will be required to apply for and obtain permission from BCSA before they will be authorized to perform electrical work in accordance with Electrical Safety Regulation, Section 4(1)(b). BCSA will recognize proof of completing the ASTTBC training program to qualify for permission. To further address industry’s concerns about safety, BCSA will set terms and conditions on the work that may be performed. Development of BCSA’s application and credentialing processes is under way and is expected to be completed in early 2014. BCSA will make an announcement as to when ASTTBC technologists and technicians will be able to begin applying for the new, limited scope BCSA credential.

For more information regarding this process, the previous update (from September 25th, 2013) along with Frequently Asked Questions can be accessed at: http://safetyauthority.ca/news/limited-scope-electrical-work-practitioner-training-program-recognition-update

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About BC Safety Authority

BC Safety Authority is an independent, self-funded organization mandated to oversee the safe installation and operation of technical systems and equipment. In addition to issuing permits, licences and certificates, it works with industry to reduce safety risks through assessment, education and outreach, enforcement, and research.

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