How to Begin the PSR Process

We are often asked: “How is a Pre-Start Health and Safety Review (PSR) begun?”  We can refer our clients to Section 7 of Ontario Regulation 851, but often we are asked whether it applies to their situation or not.

As can be seen within Section 7, there are several circumstances in industrial settings which “trigger” a PSR to be performed.  Once a PSR is triggered, a Professional Engineer licenced by the Association of Professional Engineers Ontario (PEO), is authorized to conduct the PSR and begin the process.

The engineer should begin by visiting the site and reviewing the equipment or process for which the PSR is being conducted.  This would include; the equipment, its controls, its location within the building and the manner in which it operates.  He or she should then enumerate the Hazards which are present, both evident and predicted.  The hazards, once enumerated, enable the engineer to develop a plan of measures which when instituted, eliminate the risks associated with the hazards.

The plan should be extensively reviewed with the client to ensure constructability, operability and maintainability are considered.  This process is often iterative and may take several attempts to “tweak” it until it satisfies the client’s concerns.

All of this information should be included in the formal PSR report.  Once the report is transmitted to the client, the PSR process is complete.
Often, we are asked to return to site during or after implementation of the measures to ensure the requirements of the regulation are being met.  This in our opinion is a worthwhile step, although not strictly required by the regulation.