May 30, 2011


Public Services Health & Safety Association (PSHSA) was saddened by the news that Grade 12 student, Eric Leighton was killed by an explosion in the automotive shop/tool room area at Mother Teresa Catholic High School, Ottawa on May 26. Several students and a teacher were also injured, suffering non-life threatening injuries. Our thoughts are with Eric’s friends and family.


This tragedy is currently under investigation by the police, as well as the Ministry of Labour, whose role is to investigate fatalities and health and safety incidents at workplaces. Working with the local police service who is the lead on this investigation, the Ministry’s priority in this investigation is to ensure that the occupational health and safety act is followed and enforced.


In response to this tragedy, PSHSA is mobilizing to assist clients with school shop safety. We have will be developing a number of tools available in the near future including webinars Chemical Safety in the Shop Environment, Due Diligence for Shop Teachers and Job Hazard Analysis and Risk Assessment. PSHSA also offers numerous resources for the education sector including WHMIS training,  Workplace Specific Hazard Training (e.g. Chemical, Fire & Explosion, Environmental, Machine Guarding, etc.) in a variety of formats including CDs, DVDs, workbooks, on-site and regional training, webinars and free downloadable fast facts. Look to our website for a new Risk Assessment Fast Fact and other tools coming soon.