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Underground Mines the Focus of Winter Safety Blitz

Ontario Committed To Preventing Workplace Injuries

  • Issued: January 30, 2014
  • Content last reviewed: January 2014
  • See also: Backgrounder | Mining

Ontario has launched a two-month, province-wide safety blitz on hoisting plants in underground mines.

In January and February, Ministry of Labour inspectors will visit and inspect underground mines to ensure hoisting plants have proper locking and tagging procedures in place to protect workers and help keep them safe.

Hoisting plants, which carry miners, materials, and equipment from the surface and underground in mines, will be checked to ensure:

  • Safety measures are in place when performing repairs or other work to hoisting equipment.
  • Written procedures are in place for locking and tagging.
  • Workers are trained on various lockout devices and personal protective equipment needed when working on electrical equipment.

Ontario continues to make mine safety a priority. Thirteen blitzes focused on the mining sector have been conducted in the past five years, including two in the past nine months. This proactive enforcement builds on the government's recently announced comprehensive mining safety review to further improve health and safety in the sector.

Protecting the health and safety of miners and all of the province's workers is part of the Ontario government's plan to invest in people, build modern infrastructure and support a dynamic and innovative business climate.


"Mine safety is something that our government is focused on every single day. That is what our comprehensive mine safety review and these blitzes are all about — making sure miners and all workers across Ontario go home to their families and loved ones at the end of their shift."
— Yasir Naqvi, Ontario Minister of Labour

"Safety is a significant issue for underground mines. Mines with good locking and tagging procedures for hoisting equipment generally have fewer incidents involving injuries. We're working to improve health and safety at Ontario mines."
— George Gritziotis, Chief Prevention Officer


  • Ontario has about 40 underground mines, employing about 25,000 workers. Most mines are located in Northern Ontario.
  • Since 2008, Ministry of Labour inspectors have conducted more than 345,000 field visits, 52 inspection blitzes and issued more than 560,000 compliance orders in Ontario workplaces across all sectors.


Read more about the province's Safe At Work Ontario strategy.

Learn about the ministry's Mining Sector Plan 2013-2014.

Winter Blitz Targets Underground Mines

Jonathan Rose, Minister’s Office, 416-326-7709

Bruce Skeaff, Communications Branch, 416-326-7405
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