Happy Holidays from Actsafe!

Season’s Greetings!

From all of us at Actsafe, we wish you happy holidays and a peaceful new year filled with good health, happiness and safety knowledge!

The Actsafe office will be closed from 3pm Friday, December 21st and will re-open on Wednesday, January 2nd at 9.00am.

If you experience a worksite emergency, contact WorkSafeBC, their Prevention Information Line is 1.888.621.7233.

Safety Scene – December 2018 Edition

In the December 2018 issue:

  • Actsafe’s Event Safety Conference 2019.
  • New AEDs available in January.
  • Working in cold weather conditions.
  • Actsafe seeks new Executive Director.

Also, in this month’s edition, be in with a chance of winning one of five $10 Starbucks vouchers by completing our short Newsletter Feedback survey.

View The Actsafe Safety Scene here.

Actsafe Seeks New Executive Director

For the full opportunity description, click here.

The Executive Director is responsible for the effective administration of Actsafe Safety Association, and for achieving the goals of the mission statement and the objectives set by the Board of Directors. Appointed by the Board of Directors and reporting to the Chair, the Executive Director provides leadership in the management of Actsafe, the facilitation of stakeholder input, and directs the staff in the planning and development, administration, finance, management, and mentoring of all Actsafe activities.

Julian Manchon or Tony Kirschner
BC V7Y 1G5
Phone: (604) 688-8422

Actsafe Launches Injury Prevention Initiative

To celebrate Actsafe’s 20th year in the business of helping to keep workers safe we’ve launched a new digital safety initiative, Actsafe Injury Prevention Week (AIP Week).  Each year AIP Week will highlight preventable industry injuries within different sectors of production work. This year’s week long campaign is entitled Back Here, Safety Matters and puts a focus on the leading causes of injury in BC’s motion picture industry and its workers, working on and around trucks.

Actsafe’s inaugural AIP Week begins the week of November 5th. During campaign week, Actsafe will provide productions with additional resources, with an aim to help employers, supervisors and workers address the theme of the campaign. In addition, film studios will feature large art installations drawing attention to, and creating conversations around, the resources necessary to keep a production’s crew safe around trucks.

For further info check out our page dedicated to AIP Week here.




Cannabis Legalization in Canada, October 2018

Recreational marijuana officially became legal in Canada on Oct. 17, 2018.

Impairment from substance use can cause physical and behavioural changes that affect a person’s ability to work safely. Workplace impairment as an occupational health and safety issue is of increasing concern to British Columbia employers, workers, and other stakeholders.

Employers are encouraged to develop policies and procedures that address impairment in the workplace. An impairment policy that takes a fitness-to-work approach to impairment can help you to meet your workplace safety obligations. You should also communicate your impairment policy clearly to workers.

Further resources;

Actsafe’s Executive Director Steps Down

Geoff Teoli has accepted an exciting new position with the City of Vancouver so, unfortunately, this means that his last day with Actsafe will be October 5th, 2018.

Over the past five years Geoff has led Actsafe through significant innovation and growth, enhancing our organization’s delivery of services and support to the motion picture, television, performing arts and live event industries. He will leave a legacy of strong leadership, collaboration and passionate commitment to Actsafe’s health and safety mission.

We would like to take this opportunity on behalf of the Actsafe Team, Board of Directors, Standing Committees and our communities at large, to thank him for his support throughout his tenure with Actsafe. Please join us in wishing Geoff tremendous success in his future endeavours.

You can find Actsafe Safety Association’s Board Chair, Nancy Harwood’s, official announcement of this news here

Air Quality Advisory – August 2018

If an Air Quality Advisory has been issued because of high concentrations of fine particulate matter due to smoke from wildfires around the region, the following information should be considered;

The Ministry of Environment recommends that strenuous outdoor activities be avoided. If you are experiencing any of the following symptoms while working outdoors, contact your First Aid or Craft Services person: difficulty in breathing, chest pain or discomfort, and sudden onset of cough or irritation of airways. Exposure is particularly a concern for workers who have underlying medical conditions such as diabetes, and lung or heart disease. People with heart or lung conditions may be more sensitive to the effects of smoke and should watch for any change in symptoms that may be due to smoke exposure. If any symptoms are noted, affected individuals should take steps to reduce their exposure to smoke and should go to their health care provider, walk in clinic or emergency department depending on severity of symptoms.

How to reduce your personal risk when working outdoors.

•Use common sense regarding outdoor physical activity – if your breathing becomes difficult or uncomfortable, stop or reduce the activity.

•You may be able to reduce your exposure to smoke by moving to cleaner air. Conditions can vary dramatically by area and elevation.

•Stay cool and drink plenty of water.

•Take shelter in air-conditioned buildings which have large indoor volumes and limited entry of outdoor air. Smoke levels may be lower indoors. However, elevated levels of smoke particles will still be present. If you stay indoors, be aware of your symptoms.

•Continue to manage medical conditions such as asthma, chronic respiratory disease and heart failure. If symptoms continue to be bothersome, seek medical attention.

Maintaining good overall health is a good way to reduce health risks resulting from short-term exposure to air pollution.

Pay attention to local air quality reports, air quality may be poor even though smoke may not be visible.

For more information on current Air Quality, please visit or Metro Vancouver’s AirMap at

Extreme Hot Weather Ahead

Heat-related health and safety hazards increase when temperatures rise, and workers and employers must take precautions to prevent serious medical distress.

Actsafe has compiled some resources for workers and employers to use when crews are scheduled to work outdoors in extreme hot weather conditions.

The Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety’s Working in Heat infographic packs lots of useful information into a small package to help employers protect workers from heat stress.






Actsafe’s Safety Bulletin on Working in Extreme Hot Conditions is also a valuable resource for workers and employers alike.









As part of Actsafe’s upcoming Online Safety Awareness Course, we have produced a number of videos dealing with hazards workers may encounter on the worksite.  Click on the image below to watch our video on working in extreme hot conditions to find out what to look for when workers may be in a heat-related emergency, and what to do to protect them and yourself.







WorkSafeBC’s Heat Stress resource page also has information available to help workers and employers deal with working outside in high temperatures. Click on the image below to see what they have to offer.










The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) has developed a great smartphone app that can tell you what the heat index is in your area, what the signs and symptoms of heat stress are, and what first aid treatment should be administered to someone suffering from a heat-related emergency. The downside of this app? Heat indexes are only automatically available for locations in the United States.  If you’re located in Canada, you can manually enter the temperature and humidity (simply check your built-in weather app for these details) without inputting a location. Check out the app, available for iOS and Android devices, by clicking on the image below.








The bottom line is that working in hot temperatures for an extended period of time can lead to serious medical emergencies.  If you find that you are working outdoors in these conditions, make sure you:

  • Drink plenty of water even before you feel thirsty and stay in a cool place.
  • Seek a cool place such as a tree-shaded area or air-conditioned spot like a public building.
  • Take regularly scheduled breaks out of the sun, in a cool place.
  • Notify your supervisor and seek medical assistance if you suspect you may have the symptoms of heat illness.

Mental Health & Addiction Resource

The Calltime Mental Health campaign has been developed to support BC motion picture workers and their families, reduce the stigma related to mental health and substance use concerns, and to ensure that BC motion picture workers are aware of the services and benefits available to them through their Union Health Benefit Plans and broader resources that are available to the public.

Calltime: Mental Health is an initiative created by British Columbia’s motion picture industry unions, driven by their vision statement:

We envision a future where motion picture industry workers come together as a Community of Care to help those with mental illness and substance abuse issues; a culture where everyone feels safe at work; and supported and empowered to ask for and offer help; where union staff and department managers and supervisors have access to training and resources to adequately address issues as they arise; and where impairment at work is seen as an occupational health and safety issue and is neither accepted nor condoned. provides important information such as:

Union resources;
Mental health and addiction resources which are available through the British Columbia motion picture industry unions and guilds. Here you can find information for the appropriate organization for you, your friend or colleague, or your family member.

Publicly available mental health and addiction resources for;

  • General mental health
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Sleep
  • Alcohol and addiction
  • Suicide
  • For youth and young adults
  • Canadian mental health resources

For more information head to the Calltime: Mental Health website here

A Message to BC Employers

Employers have an obligation to comply with Occupational Health and Safety Regulations and the Workers Compensation Act of British Columbia. This means that workers have the right to a safe and healthy workplace. They have the right to be properly trained, and the right to refuse unsafe work. But it’s more than a legal obligation. It’s the right thing to do. You owe it to your workers to ensure they go home to their families, friends, and loved ones healthy and safe at the end of the day.

Please see WorkSafeBC’s reminder to employers of their responsibility for the health and safety of their workers here.

Industry acts quickly to certify live performance electrical workers

March 3, 2011

Less than a month after Actsafe launched its new Live Performance Electrical Certificate (LPEC), the organization is getting strong signals that the program will be a success.

“Our goal is for 100% of our eligible techs to hold this certification,” stated Matt Lees, Personnel Director for Riggit Services Inc. “It’s the first step in people understanding the concept of power and shows one’s skill set with regard to an understanding of technology and theory. The certification not only provides the knowledge to ensure safety, but also legitimizes the work.”

The BC Safety Standards Act requires certification of electrical and audio-visual technicians working in theatres, concert halls and other live performance venues.

But until February 1 this year, only the Full Entertainment (FE) and Limited Entertainment (LE) certifications were available. Though the FE and the LE are required for work in film and television, both credentials exceeded the level of expertise needed in the live performance industry.
Industry raised the issue of a certification gap, and in response Actsafe worked with electrical professionals in the areas of live events, concert tours and theatre to develop an online test for the LPEC certification.

Nik von Schulman, Director of Production with Patrick Roberge Productions, is one of five industry specialists who helped develop the test. He confirms that safety and liability were important concerns in the industry.

“When you are tying in to feeder cables with high amperage, people can be injured,” says von Schulman. He credits the live entertainment industry for being “proactive in this area of health and safety.”

Broad implementation of the LPEC is also great news from a community relations perspective: audiences attending a theatre or a special event like a fashion show expect those involved to understand how to do the work safely and prevent accidents.

Dustin Burns, an entertainment industry technician, has taken the test, found the study guide expanded his knowledge of power, and was easy to digest. “Safety being paramount, I really respect the fact that an association like Actsafe can put together a program, for free mind you, to create a baseline skill-set for working around electricity that is potentially fatal,” stated Burns.

Of those who have taken the test, 93% passed on their first attempt. The certification has no expiry or requirement for renewal.

Filming in the Down Town East Side (DTES)

Please Note: it is currently required that an experienced community film liaison with overdose (OD) intervention training be hired when filming on the DTES.

In 2017 the City of Vancouver experienced an overdose crisis largely in the DTES. Fentanyl-laced drugs are commonplace and, therefore, more people are choosing to do drugs in public spaces (streets, alleys) where they are more likely to be noticed and receive life-saving help.

Productions filming in the DTES should:

  • take note of and immediately notify authorities of people in crisis,
  • clear impediments to any volunteer or emergency agency providing assistance to those in crisis and:
  • be aware that witnessing and/or helping with overdoses can potentially be traumatic to production staff. the Director’s Guild of Canada (DGC) will be working with DTES outreach workers to revise training and education material regarding this issue.

This is applicable to filming North of Pender and South of Railway and East of Columbia, West of Princess.

The City of Vancouver and DGC believe these measures are in the best immediate and long-term interests of the industry and the DTES residents and it’s outreach organizations. The DGC location Caucus will help productions connect with providers of liaison services. The City of Vancouver reserves the right to apply this requirement in other adjacent or identified areas at its discretion.

Please contact Sandi Swanigan, Senior Manager of Film and Special Events, with questions or comments.

Wild Fire Air Quality Advisory

When wildfires burn in the areas surrounding Metro Vancouver, the air quality decreases significantly.

Due to the increase in smoke particulate from these wildfires, the B.C. Ministry of Environment, Metro Vancouver and Vancouver Coastal Health may issue an Air Quality Advisory for Metro Vancouver, the Sea-t0-Sky corridor (Howe sound through Squamish, and Whistler to Pemberton) and the Fraser Valley.

We have created this information advisory in hopes that it will give workers and employers some insight on how to deal with working outdoors during the wildfires burning around British Columbia.

Air Quality Advisory 2015 PDF


Planting A Seed For A Safer Future

A forum held February 5, 2011 in Vancouver brought together 45 leaders in the Motion Picture industry to discuss how to build a stronger culture of safety. Billed “A Conversation that Matters”, department heads, producers, supervisors and production managers from across the industry identified several themes over the course of the day using a Word Cafe format.

Actsafe brought in Graphic Recording Artist Avril Orloff to produce an illustration of the event.

Browse through our gallery to see photos of the event.

Extended Work Hours DGC Guidelines

Fatigued? Worried about driving home after a long shift? Collective agreement guidelines may provide options to help.

The following guidelines from The Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) and Canadian Media Producers Association (CMPA) set forth common sense measures which should be considered when extended work days are necessitated, including how to recognize the danger signs of sleep deprivation, and an understanding of how your supervisor will assist anyone experiencing tiredness.

Extended Work Day Guidelines DGC

Carbon Monoxide Exposure During Film Shoots WorkSafeBC Bulletin

This bulletin discusses the hazards of carbon monoxide exposure during film shoots and how to manage the risks. It outlines what employers must do in planning shoots and training workers and supervisors, as well as maintaining equipment, conducting assessments, and implementing controls. It also outlines the need to coordinate work activities and support the joint health and safety committee.

Download WorkSafeBC’s booklet here.

West Nile Virus Info Sheet

As of August 2009 there have been confirmed contracted infections recorded in the Southern Okanagan. The West Nile Virus is spread to humans and other mammals from mosquitoes that have fed on infected birds. While the risks of being infected and becoming seriously ill are low, anyone exposed to mosquitoes in an area that has West Nile Virus could potentially become infected.

West Nile Virus Fact Sheet PDF

Transmission Brake Hazard Alert

Trucks without a designated “park” position indicator on the truck’s transmission-box can be the source of a unique rolling hazard.  Read our 2015 hazard alert poster on trucks with this type of transmission for further details, which includes a check-list for easy reference.

Transmission Brake Alert PDF

Safety Scene – February 2017 Edition

We’ve dedicated the February 2017 issue to the inaugural Actsafe Event Safety Conference.

Plus, in the February 2017 issue:

  • View our complete conference program
  • Complete conference schedule
  • Dancer Transition Resource Centre ‘on the MOVE’ event dates
  • Top 10 most viewed Motion Picture bulletins 2016
  • Full publication of our ‘Recommendations for Fighting Fatigue’ document

and a whole lot more!

View The Actsafe Safety Scene here!

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