Identification and Analysis of Safety Hazards on the Virtual Construction Worksite

International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local Union 2085

The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 2085 in partnership with the boilermakers, pipefitters, painters and other affiliated unions of the Manitoba Building and Construction Trades Council will develop a series of virtual reality (VR) resources for youth and new entrants in construction. These resources will include: Slips and Trips, Falls; Electrocution; Struck By Objects; Caught in Between; Noise; Asphyxiation; Fire and Explosion; Elements of Weather Conditions; Toxicity from Exposures; and Ergonomics.

BIT Space Development will provide the technology for this project. The technology will allow a user to virtually explore the workplace through a 360 degree lens using a cell phone and an Oculus headset.

The knowledge transfer and exchange (KTE) plan for the project includes activities to share the project’s outcomes with other workplaces, key user groups and practitioners in the occupational health and safety community. The project’s resources will be made available to safety associations, at the worksite for new worker orientation, in high schools, technical colleges, immigrant settlement agencies, remote locations and adult learning centres. This project has the support of MacDonald Youth Services, Seven Oaks School Division, Centre for Aboriginal Human Resource Department and the Northern Manitoba Sector Council.

Occupations in the construction sector are inherently hazardous. The addition of VR resources will increase access to safety training, reduce risk and prevent workplace injuries. This project is consistent with Manitoba’s Five-Year Plan for Workplace Injury and Illness Prevention which affirms the government’s commitment to focus efforts in high hazard industries and workplaces that employ most-at-risk workers including new, young and immigrant workers.

A quick demo under best shows how it looks like in VR mode. Let’s check it out.