-Steve Knoke, SEAPARC Manager
In response to the tragic events involving an accidental ammonia release in Fernie, BC in October 2017, WorkSafeBC immediately started an inspection initiative focused on risk assessment, exposure control plans, and work procedures, as well as emergency response and evacuation plans for ammonia. These inspections took place in recreational facilities and ice arenas throughout BC.
To prevent releases and mitigate the risk of injury from ammonia exposure, owners and operators of ammonia refrigeration systems must ensure operation and maintenance safety programs are implemented at their facilities. Technical Safety BC and WorkSafeBC are both supporting the owners and operators of more than 200 arenas in the province to prevent accidental ammonia release.
SEAPARC (located at 2168 Phillips Road in Sooke) has undergone a complete review of arena refrigeration system as part of the WorkSafeBC and Technical Safety BC (TSBC) inspections. SEAPARC demonstrated to WorkSafeBC and TSBC that required operation and maintenance safety programs are in place.
A component of this safety review identified the need to conduct an annual drill and exercise with all coordinating agencies including the Sooke Fire Department, Refrigeration Contactor, and residents in close proximity (300 metres) of the arena.
The drill is scheduled to occur on November 29th at 7pm.
The goal is to simulate an uncontrolled ammonia release event and ensure a coordinated response. Safety and preparedness are priorities.
SEAPARC is partnered with local emergency response organizations, including the Sooke Fire Department, to ensure coordinated response plans are in place.