The city has been struggling with a growing number of construction-related injuries.
A study by the city and the University of Toronto found that just over half of the city’s buildings have been damaged by construction-induced injuries since 2015, and that a large portion of those injuries occur at construction sites.
A city-wide survey of construction sites found that the number of injuries in construction sites increased from 3,000 to nearly 6,000 from 2015 to 2020, and in 2021 it rose from 2,400 to 4,600.
A second survey of about 3,600 construction sites also found that construction-site injuries increased, from 1,000 in 2021 to 3,800 in 2020.
A third survey of more than 3,300 construction sites showed a slight decrease in construction- site injuries in 2021, with fewer than 1,500 injuries reported in 2021.
More than 1.5 million buildings have undergone construction-injury testing, according to the city, with more than half of those buildings in Toronto and the surrounding area.
But it’s not just the city that has a problem.
More and more, cities are starting to see the need for more buildings to protect against these injuries, and this could be an important part of the solution.
“The problem is that it’s become the norm for construction sites to be built up.
It’s becoming more common for buildings to be completed and then removed from public view,” says Scott Taylor, a senior architect and project architect at BNY Mellon, a financial services firm based in New York City.
“It’s a huge amount of land.
And it’s been built over.
So when we see buildings being constructed, it creates a problem.”
Building Safety and Health in Toronto The city’s building code, which was introduced in 2001, requires that all construction sites, including commercial and residential buildings, be inspected and inspected again every three years.
But in 2018, the city announced that it would only be conducting annual inspections for new construction sites after the third inspection, and would not be testing any buildings in the next two years.
“We’ve heard concerns from our clients about the impact of building safety and health on these projects, particularly in a city that is experiencing a lot of construction,” says Taylor.
“So we’re really focusing on the safety of the public as well as the health and safety of our workers.”
Construction site inspections, including site visits and the assessment of site conditions, are often performed by a team of building inspectors from the city.
The team is responsible for the overall health and welfare of the construction workers and the environment in the project site.
They’re also responsible for ensuring that the construction site is safe for the public.
They are also responsible to ensure that construction workers are trained in safe construction practices.
A team of four building inspectors are typically responsible for performing site inspections for every single project site in the city in a single year.
“There’s no doubt that if you have a lot more inspections, the inspections can be more thorough, and we can get a better picture of the safety and the health of the workers,” says Peter MacKay, a project manager at the city of Toronto.
“And then, if there’s more inspections we can take more steps to address these issues.”
Inspections can also be performed by third parties that have been hired by the contractor to perform inspections, such as health and occupational safety experts or construction unions.
“What’s really interesting about this is that this is not something that we’re seeing from our contractor’s perspective,” says MacKay.
“They’re looking at it from their perspective.
They have to make sure that their workers are safe, and they know that if there are any problems they can take corrective action.”
A team from the Ontario Municipal Board (OMB) was also hired to perform site inspections in Toronto in 2018.
“Our goal is to get as much information as we can and get as many inspections as we possibly can,” says Steve O’Sullivan, the OMB’s executive director of compliance.
“Once we have a more complete picture, we can then make recommendations to the contractor about what they should do to improve the safety, health and the welfare of their workers.”
Inspectors from the Omb also conduct site visits to verify the safety practices of contractors and workers.
“If they feel that there are some problems that have occurred that they can look into,” says O’ Sullivan, “they will look into it and make recommendations for what they can do to address the problems.”
Building safety and human rights In addition to the health concerns of workers and environmental impacts, there are also safety and labour issues that can come up when building construction takes place on public land.
“Construction workers have a certain level of respect and an expectation of safety.
They understand that if they do something wrong, they’re going to get penalized,” says Andrew Giese, a construction safety specialist and professor at Ryerson University.
“That is not