Occupational Health and Safety Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. O.1


Occupational Health and Safety Act

R.S.O. 1990, CHAPTER O.1

Consolidation Period: From January 1, 2024 to the e-Laws currency date.

Last amendment: 2023, c. 15, Sched. 5.



1 (1) In this Act,

“Board” means the Ontario Labour Relations Board; (“Commission”)

“Building Code” means any version of the Ontario Building Code that was in force at any time since it was made under the Building Code Act, 1974, the Building Code Act of the Revised Statutes of Ontario, 1980, the Building Code Act of the Revised Statutes of Ontario, 1990, the Building Code Act, 1992 or a successor to the Building Code Act, 1992; (“code du bâtiment”)

“certified member” means a committee member who is certified under section 7.6; (“membre agréé”)

“Chief Prevention Officer” means the Chief Prevention Officer appointed under subsection 22.3 (1); (“directeur général de la prévention”)

“committee” means a joint health and safety committee established under this Act; (“comité”)

“competent person” means a person who,

(a) is qualified because of knowledge, training and experience to organize the work and its performance,

(b) is familiar with this Act and the regulations that apply to the work, and

(c) has knowledge of any potential or actual danger to health or safety in the workplace; (“personne compétente”)

“construction” includes erection, alteration, repair, dismantling, demolition, structural maintenance, painting, land clearing, earth moving, grading, excavating, trenching, digging, boring, drilling, blasting, or concreting, the installation of any machinery or plant, and any work or undertaking in connection with a project but does not include any work or undertaking underground in a mine; (“construction”)

“constructor” means a person who undertakes a project for an owner and includes an owner who undertakes all or part of a project by himself or by more than one employer; (“constructeur”)

“Deputy Minister” means the Deputy Minister of Labour; (“sous-ministre”)

“designated substance” means a biological, chemical or physical agent or combination thereof prescribed as a designated substance to which the exposure of a worker is prohibited, regulated, restricted, limited or controlled; (“substance désignée”)

“Director” means an inspector under this Act who is appointed as a Director for the purposes of this Act; (“directeur”)

“employer” means a person who employs one or more workers or contracts for the services of one or more workers and includes a contractor or subcontractor who performs work or supplies services and a contractor or subcontractor who undertakes with an owner, constructor, contractor or subcontractor to perform work or supply services; (“employeur”)

“engineer” means, subject to any prescribed requirements or restrictions, a person who is licensed as a professional engineer or who holds a limited licence under the Professional Engineers Act; (“ingénieur”)

“factory” means,

(a) a building or place other than a mine, mining plant or place where homework is carried on, where,

(i) any manufacturing process or assembling in connection with the manufacturing of any goods or products is carried on,

(ii) in preparing, inspecting, manufacturing, finishing, repairing, warehousing, cleaning or adapting for hire or sale any substance, article or thing, energy is,

(A) used to work any machinery or device, or

(B) modified in any manner,

(iii) any work is performed by way of trade or for the purposes of gain in or incidental to the making of any goods, substance, article or thing or part thereof,

(iv) any work is performed by way of trade or for the purposes of gain in or incidental to the altering, demolishing, repairing, maintaining, ornamenting, finishing, storing, cleaning, washing or adapting for sale of any goods, substance, article or thing, or

(v) aircraft, locomotives or vehicles used for private or public transport are maintained,

(b) a laundry including a laundry operated in conjunction with,

(i) a public or private hospital,

(ii) a hotel, or

(iii) a public or private institution for religious, charitable or educational purposes, and

(c) a logging operation; (“usine”)

“hazardous material” means a biological or chemical agent named or described in the regulations as a hazardous material; (“matériau dangereux”)

“hazardous physical agent” means a physical agent named or described in the regulations as a hazardous physical agent; (“agent physique dangereux”)

“health and safety management system” means a coordinated system of procedures, processes and other measures that is designed to be implemented by employers in order to promote continuous improvement in occupational health and safety; (“système de gestion de la santé et de la sécurité”)

“health and safety representative” means a health and safety representative selected under this Act; (“délégué à la santé et à la sécurité”)

“homework” means the doing of any work in the manufacture, preparation, improvement, repair, alteration, assembly or completion of any article or thing or any part thereof by a person for wages in premises occupied primarily as living accommodation; (“travail à domicile”)

“industrial establishment” means an office building, factory, arena, shop or office, and any land, buildings and structures appertaining thereto; (“établissement industriel”)

“inspector” means an inspector appointed for the purposes of this Act and includes a Director; (“inspecteur”)

“labour relations officer” means a labour relations officer appointed under the Labour Relations Act, 1995; (“agent des relations de travail”)

“licensee” means a person who holds a licence under Part III of the Crown Forest Sustainability Act, 1994; (“titulaire d’un permis”)

“logging” means the operation of felling or trimming trees for commercial or industrial purposes or for the clearing of land, and includes the measuring, storing, transporting or floating of logs, the maintenance of haul roads, scarification, the carrying out of planned burns and the practice of silviculture; (“exploitation forestière”)

“mine” means any work or undertaking for the purpose of opening up, proving, removing or extracting any metallic or non-metallic mineral or mineral-bearing substance, rock, earth, clay, sand or gravel; (“mine”)

“mining plant” means any roasting or smelting furnace, concentrator, mill or place used for or in connection with washing, crushing, grinding, sifting, reducing, leaching, roasting, smelting, refining, treating or research on any substance mentioned in the definition of “mine”; (“installation minière”)

“Minister” means the Minister of Labour; (“ministre”)

“Ministry” means the Ministry of Labour; (“ministère”)

“occupational illness” means a condition that results from exposure in a workplace to a physical, chemical or biological agent to the extent that the normal physiological mechanisms are affected and the health of the worker is impaired thereby and includes an occupational disease for which a worker is entitled to benefits under the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act, 1997; (“maladie professionnelle”)

“Office of the Employer Adviser” means the office continued under subsection 176 (2) of the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act, 1997; (“Bureau des conseillers des employeurs”)

“Office of the Worker Adviser” means the office continued under subsection 176 (1) of the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act, 1997; (“Bureau des conseillers des travailleurs”)

“owner” includes a trustee, receiver, mortgagee in possession, tenant, lessee, or occupier of any lands or premises used or to be used as a workplace, and a person who acts for or on behalf of an owner as an agent or delegate; (“propriétaire”)

“prescribed” means prescribed by a regulation made under this Act; (“prescrit”)

“professional engineer of the Ministry” means a person employed by the Ministry and who is licensed as a professional engineer under the Professional Engineers Act; (“ingénieur du ministère”)

“project” means a construction project, whether public or private, including,

(a) the construction of a building, bridge, structure, industrial establishment, mining plant, shaft, tunnel, caisson, trench, excavation, highway, railway, street, runway, parking lot, cofferdam, conduit, sewer, watermain, service connection, telegraph, telephone or electrical cable, pipe line, duct or well, or any combination thereof,

(b) the moving of a building or structure, and

(c) any work or undertaking, or any lands or appurtenances used in connection with construction; (“chantier”)

“regulations” means the regulations made under this Act; (“règlements”)

“shop” means a building, booth or stall or a part of such building, booth or stall where goods are handled, exposed or offered for sale or where services are offered for sale; (“magasin”)

“supervisor” means a person who has charge of a workplace or authority over a worker; (“superviseur”)

“trade union” means a trade union as defined in the Labour Relations Act, 1995 that has the status of exclusive bargaining agent under that Act in respect of any bargaining unit or units in a workplace and includes an organization representing workers or persons to whom this Act applies where such organization has exclusive bargaining rights under any other Act in respect of such workers or persons; (“syndicat”)

“worker” means any of the following, but does not include an inmate of a correctional institution or like institution or facility who participates inside the institution or facility in a work project or rehabilitation program:

1. A person who performs work or supplies services for monetary compensation.

2. A secondary school student who performs work or supplies services for no monetary compensation under a work experience program authorized by the school board that operates the school in which the student is enrolled.

3. A person who performs work or supplies services for no monetary compensation under a...

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