2019 annual report - Occupational injuries amongst employees under federal jurisdiction

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List of abbreviations

AIRT
Air Transportation
BANK
Banking and Banks
BRID
Interprovincial Infrastructure (Bridges, Tunnels, Canals, and Causeways)
BROAD
Broadcasting (Television, Radio, and Internet)
COMM
Communications
DIFR
Disabling Injury Frequency Rate
EAHOR
Employer's Annual Hazardous Occurrence Report
ENER
Energy, Mining and Mineral Processing
FEED
Feed, Flour and Seed
FIFR
Fatal Injury Frequency Rate
GRAIN
Grain Handling and Grain Elevators
INDG
Indigenous, Aboriginal and First Nations
LONG
Longshoring, Stevedoring, Port, Harbour Operations and Pilotage
OHS
Occupational Health and Safety
PIPE
Pipeline Transportation
POST
Postal Services and Postal Contractors
PUBS
Federal Public Services, Public Service Departments and Crown Corporations
RAIL
Rail Transportation
ROAD
Road Transportation
WATER
Water Transportation (Shipping and Ferries)

List of charts

Overview

The data reported in this publication comes from the Employer's Annual Hazardous Occurrence Report (EAHOR) submitted by federally regulated employers to the Labour Program each year. The Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Regulations under the Canada Labour Code stipulate this reporting requirement.

Under the OHS regulations of the Canada Labour Code, federally regulated employers are required to submit the EAHOR report, no later than March 1 for the preceding 12-month period ending December 31, even if there are no hazardous occurrences to report. The EAHOR records the total number of disabling injuries, deaths, minor injuries, occupational diseases and other hazardous occurrences that have occurred in federally regulated workplaces.

Failure to comply with the requirement to submit the EAHOR by March 1 may result in a general inspection of workplaces to determine if there are other areas of non-compliance with obligations under the Canada Labour Code.

This publication presents both information and analysis on the Disabling Injury Frequency Rate (DIFR) and the Fatal Injury Frequency Rate (FIFR) for 2019. It also provides the statistics at the level of the industry sector and province/territory. The definitions of these rates and other relevant terms are found in the List of Terms of this publication. Information on all injury rates and historical data dating back to 2008 are available at the Government of Canada’s Open Data Portal.

Industry sectors under federal jurisdiction

According to the Canada Labour Code, federal jurisdiction encompasses any work and/or undertaking or business that is within the legislative authority of the Parliament of Canada. This includes all work deemed to be for the common good of at least 2 provinces and outside the exclusive authority of provincial legislatures. For a detailed list of federally regulated industries and workplaces visit the webpage.

Highlights: the federal jurisdiction work injury and fatality rates

  • There were a total number of 47,299 injuries (disabling injuries, fatal injuries and minor injuries) reported in 2019. This is a 4.2% decrease from 2018 (49,366)
  • Of the total number of injuries in 2019, 20,850 (44.1%) were disabling injuries, 66 (0.14%) were fatal injuries and 26,383 (55.8%) were minor injuries. All 3 types of injuries decreased from 2018
  • The 2019 federal jurisdiction DIFR is 9.39. This is an increase of 1.0% from the 2018 DIFR of 9.3. It is the third-highest DIFR in the past 10 years (2010 to 2019)
  • Of the 7 industry sectors with a DIFR higher than the 2019 federal jurisdiction DIFR, Feed, Flour and Seed underwent the most noted increase of 58.2%, rising from 7.65 in 2015 to 12.10 in 2019. See Chart 1.4 for the DIFR values for all industry sectors and Charts 3.1 (a) and Chart 3.1 (b) for historical trends for the 7 industry sectors with the highest 2019 DIFR values
  • Overall, 10 of the 16 industry sectors under federal jurisdiction reported fatalities in 2019. The Road, Air, and Rail Transportation, Indigenous, Aboriginal and First Nations, and Federal Public Services, Public Service Departments and Crown Corporations industry sectors reported fatalities in every year from 2015 to 2019
  • The 2019 federal jurisdiction FIFR is 29.64. This is a decrease of 13.4% from the 2018 FIFR of 34.24. This results from a decrease of 10 fatalities in the Road Transportation industry from 47 in 2018 to 37 in 2019. It is the third-highest FIFR in the past 10 years (2010 to 2019)
  • The 3 industry sectors with the highest FIFR values for 2019 were Road (112.93) and Rail Transportation (71.77) and Feed, Flour and Seed (54.02)
  • Since 2008, Road Transportation has consistently reported FIFR values above the federal jurisdiction rates. The fatality rate for Rail Transportation increased by 376.6% from 15.06 (1 fatal injury) in 2015 to 71.77 (5 fatal injuries) in 2019. See Chart 1.6 for FIFR values for all industry sectors and Chart 3.2 (a) and Chart 3.2 (b) for historical trends of the 7 industry sectors with the highest 2019 FIFR values

Note: More detailed and historical injury data is available at the Government of Canada’s Open Data Portal.

Occupational injuries amongst employees under federal jurisdiction by industry sector, 2019

Disabling injuries

In 2019, the total number of occupational injuries reported in the following 4 industry sectors made up 82.2% of all of the occupational disabling injuries in the federal jurisdiction:

  • Road Transportation (ROAD)
  • Federal Public Services, Public Service Departments and Crown Corporations (PUBS)
  • Air Transportation (AIRT) and
  • Postal Services and Postal Contractors (POST) (See Chart 1.1)

These industry sectors represented 60.3% of the total number of federal jurisdiction employees reported (See Chart 1.2), and contributed 60.2% of the total reported hours worked (See Chart 1.3).

Chart 1.1 Percentage of occupational disabling injuries within the federal jurisdiction by industry sector, 2019
Chart 1.1: description follows
Text description of chart 1.1
Industry sector Percentage of disabling injuries
Road transportation 33.1%
Federal public services, public service departments and crown corporations 17.9%
Air transportation 16.8%
Postal services and postal contractors 14.3%
*All others 17.8%

*All Others:

  • Banking and Banks (BANK): 3.9%
  • Communications (COMM): 3.8%
  • Rail Transportation (RAIL): 3.5%
  • Longshoring, Stevedoring, Port, Harbour Operations and Pilotage (LONG): 1.6%
  • Broadcasting (Television, Radio, and Internet) (BROAD): 1.6%
  • Water Transportation (Shipping and Ferries) (WATER): 1.3%
  • Feed, Flour and Seed (FEED): 1.1%
  • Grain Handling and Grain Elevators (GRAIN): 0.4%
  • Indigenous, Aboriginal and First Nations (INDG): 0.4%
  • Energy, Mining and Mineral Processing (ENER): 0.1%
  • Pipeline Transportation (PIPE): 0.04%
  • Interprovincial Infrastructure (Bridges, Tunnels, Canals, and Causeways) (BRID): 0.02%
Chart 1.2 Percentage of employees within the federal jurisdiction by industry sector, 2019
Chart 1.2 : description follows
Text description of chart 1.2
Industry sector Percentage of employees
Road transportation 13.5%
Air transportation 10.4%
Postal services and postal contractors 5.0%
Federal public services, public service departments and crown corporations 31.4%
*All others 39.7%

*All Others:

  • BANK: 21.1%
  • COMM: 6.7%
  • RAIL: 3.1%
  • BROAD: 2.5%
  • INDG: 1.8%
  • LONG: 1.1%
  • WATER: 1.1%
  • FEED: 0.8%
  • GRAIN: 0.6%
  • PIPE: 0.5%
  • ENER: 0.3%
  • BRID: 0.04%
Chart 1.3 Percentage of total hours worked within the federal jurisdiction by industry sector, 2019
Chart 1.3: description follows
Text description of chart 1.3
Industry sector Percentage of total hours worked
Road transportation 14.7%
Air transportation 10.3%
Postal services and postal contractors 4.2%
Federal public services, public service departments and crown corporations 31.1%
*All others 39.8%

*All Others:

  • BANK: 20.5%
  • COMM: 7.1%
  • RAIL: 3.1%
  • BROAD 2.5%
  • INDG: 1.7%
  • LONG: 1.4%
  • WATER 1.2%
  • FEED: 0.8%
  • GRAIN: 0.7%
  • PIPE: 0.5%
  • ENER: 0.3%
  • BRID 0.04%

Disabling Injury Frequency Rate (DIFR)

The DIFR is defined as the total number of reported disabling and fatal injuries per one million hours worked. It is considered the primary performance measure for the OHS program in the federal jurisdiction. In 2019, 7 of the 16 industry sectors under federal jurisdiction reported DIFRs higher than the federal jurisdiction rate of 9.39 (See Chart 1.4). These industries were:

  • POST
  • ROAD
  • AIRT
  • FEED
  • LONG
  • RAIL and
  • WATER

With the exception of RAIL, the remaining 6 industry sectors reported greater DIFR values than the federal jurisdiction rate in both 2018 and 2019. LONG, POST, WATER and AIRT reported a decrease in 2019 compared to 2018. FEED underwent the most noted increase of 58.2%, rising from 7.65 in 2015 to 12.10 in 2019 (See Chart 3.1 (a) and Chart 3.1 (b)).

Chart 1.4 Disabling Injury Frequency Rate (DIFR) by federal jurisdiction industry sector, 2019
Chart 1.4: description follows
Text description of chart 1.4
Industry sector Disabling injury frequency rate
Postal services and postal contractors 32.26
Road transportation 21.20
Air transportation 15.40
Feed, flour and seed 12.10
Longshoring, stevedoring, port, harbour operations and pilotage 11.16
Rail transportation 10.49
Water transportation (shipping and ferries) 10.11
Grain handling and grain elevators 6.13
Broadcasting (television, radio, Internet) 5.87
Federal public services, public service departments and crown corporations 5.39
Communications 5.05
Interprovincial Infrastructure (bridges, tunnels, canals, causeways) 4.76
Energy, mining and mineral processing 2.47
Indigenous, Aboriginal and First Nations 2.40
Banking and banks 1.80
Pipeline transportation 0.72
The federal jurisdiction rate 9.39

Fatal injuries

The total number of occupational fatalities has decreased by 16%, from 79 in 2018 to 66 in 2019. A key factor for this decrease is the reduction of fatalities in the ROAD industry sector, from 47 in 2018 to 37 in 2019.

Chart 1.5 Percentage of fatal work injuries in the federal jurisdiction by industry sector, 2019
Chart 1.5: description follows
Text description of chart 1.5
Industry sector Percentage of fatal work injuries
Road transportation 56.1%
Air transportation 16.7%
Federal public services, public service departments and crown corporations 7.6%
Rail transportation 7.6%
Broadcasting 3.0%
Communications 3.0%
*All others 6.1%

*All others include a fatality each for:

  • FEED
  • INDG
  • LONG, and
  • WATER

Fatal Injury Frequency Rate (FIFR)

The FIFR is defined as the total number of reported fatal injuries per one billion hours worked. In 2019, 10 of the 16 industry sectors that fall within federal jurisdiction reported fatalities. Amongst these, 7 industry sectors reported higher FIFR values than the federal jurisdiction rate (29.64):

  • ROAD
  • RAIL
  • FEED
  • AIRT
  • WATER
  • BROAD, and
  • LONG

ROAD, RAIL, WATER, FEED, BROAD and LONG were the 6 industry sectors having a higher FIFR value than that of federal jurisdiction in both 2018 and 2019. AIRT reported an increase of 113% from 2018 (22.54) to 2019 (48.10). RAIL increased by 376.6% from 15.06 (1 fatal injury) in 2015 to 71.77 (5 fatal injuries) in 2019. Since 2008, ROAD has consistently reported FIFR values above the federal jurisdiction rates. (See Chart 3.2)

Chart 1.6 Fatal Injury Frequency Rate (FIFR) by federal jurisdiction industry sector, 2019
Chart 1.6: description follows
Text description of chart 1.6
Industry sector Fatal Injury Frequency Rate
Road transportation 112.93
Rail transportation 71.77
Feed, flour and seed 54.02
Air transportation 48.10
Water transportation (shipping and ferries) 37.44
Broadcasting (television, radio, Internet) 35.90
Longshoring, stevedoring, port, harbour operations and pilotage 32.54
Indigenous, Aboriginal and First Nations 26.36
Communications 12.59
Federal public services, public service departments and crown corporations 7.23
The federal jurisdiction rate 29.64

Occupational injuries amongst employees under federal jurisdiction by province or territory, 2019

Disabling injuries

In 2019, 4 provinces (Ontario, Quebec, British Columbia and Alberta) accounted for 83.2% of all reported disabling injuries (see Chart 2.1). This can be attributed to these 4 provinces’ combined share of 84.4% of all reported federal jurisdiction employment (See Chart 2.2), and 84.1% of all the reported total hours worked (See Chart 2.3). The regional distribution of the total numbers of disabling injury numbers has seen little change compared to 2018.

Chart 2.1 Percentage of disabling injuries by province/territory, 2019
Chart 2.1: description follows
Text description of chart 2.1
Province/Territory Percentage of disabling injuries
Ontario 35.6%
Quebec 21.3%
British Columbia 15.4%
Alberta 10.9%
Manitoba 4.9%
*All Others 11.8%

*All others:

  • Saskatchewan: 3.5%
  • Nova Scotia: 3.4%
  • New Brunswick: 2.6%
  • Newfoundland and Labrador: 1.3%
  • Prince Edward Island: 0.3%
  • Nunavut: 0.2%
  • Foreign: 0.2%
  • Northwest Territories: 0.1%
  • Yukon: 0.1%
Chart 2.2 Percentage of federal jurisdiction employment by province/territory, 2019
Chart 2.2: description follows
Text description of chart 2.2
Province/Territory Percentage of employees
Ontario 45.2%
Quebec 19.2%
British Columbia 10.8%
Alberta 9.2%
Manitoba 4.1%
*All others 11.5%

*All others:

  • Saskatchewan: 3.0%
  • Nova Scotia: 2.8%
  • New Brunswick: 2.6%
  • Newfoundland and Labrador: 1.3%
  • Foreign: 0.6%
  • Prince Edward Island: 0.5%
  • Northwest Territories: 0.2%
  • Yukon: 0.1%
  • Nunavut: 0.1%
Chart 2.3 Percentage of total hours worked by province/territory, 2019
Chart 2.3: description follows
Text description of chart 2.3
Province/Territory Percentage of total hours worked
Ontario 44.8%
Quebec 19.5%
British Columbia 10.6%
Alberta 9.2%
Manitoba 4.3%
*All others 11.6%

*All others:

  • Saskatchewan: 3.0%
  • Nova Scotia: 2.8%
  • New Brunswick: 2.7%
  • Newfoundland and Labrador: 1.4%
  • Foreign: 0.6%
  • Prince Edward Island: 0.5%
  • Northwest Territories: 0.2%
  • Yukon: 0.1%
  • Nunavut: 0.1%

Disabling Injury Frequency Rate (DIFR)

In 2019, 6 provinces and 1 territory reported DIFR values higher than the federal jurisdiction DIFR of 9.39 (see Chart 2.4). Of these, British Columbia, Nova Scotia, Saskatchewan and Quebec reported a greater DIFR value in 2019 than in 2018. Nunavut and British Columbia remained with the highest DIFR values in 2019 when compared to 2018.

Chart 2.4 Disabling Injury Frequency Rate (DIFR) by province/territory, 2019
Chart 2.4: description follows
Text description of chart 2.4
Province/Territory Disabling Injury Frequency Rate
Nunavut 17.58
British Columbia 13.64
Nova Scotia 11.41
Alberta 11.13
Saskatchewan 10.82
Manitoba 10.73
Quebec 10.26
Yukon 9.34
Newfoundland and Labrador 9.18
New Brunswick 9.06
Ontario 7.46
Northwest Territories 6.02
Prince Edward Island 5.71
Foreign 2.8
The federal jurisdiction rate 9.39

Fatal injuries

In 2019, 4 provinces (Ontario, British Columbia, Alberta and Quebec) accounted for 75.8% of all reported fatal injuries in the federal jurisdiction (see Chart 2.5). In comparison to 2018, Ontario’s and Alberta’s share of fatal injuries decreased, while British Columbia’s and Quebec’s share of fatal injuries increased.

Chart 2.5 Percentage of fatal work injuries by province/territory, 2019
Chart 2.5: description follows
Text description of chart 2.5
Province/Territory Percentage of fatal work injuries
Ontario 25.8%
British Columbia 19.7%
Alberta 16.7%
Quebec 13.6%
Saskatchewan 6.1%
Manitoba 6.1%
New Brunswick 4.5%
Northwest Territories 3.0%
Nova Scotia 3.0%
Yukon 1.5%

Fatal Injury Frequency Rate (FIFR)

Only Newfoundland and Labrador, Prince Edward Island and Nunavut reported no fatalities in 2019 (see Chart 2.6). The Northwest Territories, Yukon, Saskatchewan, British Columbia, Alberta and Manitoba remained above the federal jurisdiction FIFR in both 2018 and 2019. Of note, the FIFR values for the Northwest Territories (376.40) and Yukon (333.57) are significantly higher than all the other provinces and territories. This is because the Northwest Territories reported 2 fatal injuries for approximately 5.3 million hours worked and Yukon reported 1 fatal injury for approximately 3.0 million hours worked.

Chart 2.6 Fatal Injury Frequency Rate (FIFR) by province/territory, 2019
Chart 2.6: description follows
Text description of chart 2.6
Province/Territory Fatal Injury Frequency Rate
Northwest Territories 376.40
Yukon 333.57
New Brunswick 66.72
Saskatchewan 59.15
British Columbia 55.00
Alberta 53.56
Nova Scotia 31.65
Manitoba 31.12
Quebec 20.78
Ontario 17.04
The federal jurisdiction rate 29.64

Annex 1: List of terms

The following definitions are used in this publication.

Disabling injury

Any employment injury or occupational disease that:

  • prevents an employee from reporting for work, or from effectively performing all the duties connected with the employee’s regular work, on any day subsequent to the day on which the occupational injury occurred, whether or not that subsequent day is a working day for that employee
  • results in the loss by an employee of a body member or a part thereof, or in a complete loss of the usefulness of a body member or part thereof, or
  • results in the permanent impairment of a bodily function of an employee

Disabling Injury Frequency Rate (DIFR)

Defined as the total number of disabling and fatal occupational injuries per one million hours worked. It is calculated based on the following formula: ((Total Disabling Injuries + Total Fatal Injuries)*1,000,000/Total Hours Worked).

Employee

Any person who has entered into or is employed under a contract of service or apprenticeship, written or oral, expressed or implied, whether by way of manual labour or otherwise. An employee is also any other person subject to the provisions of a workers’ compensation board act or any direction or order of a board.

Employment

  • All work or activities performed in carrying out assignments or requests made by the employer. It includes related activities not specifically covered by an assignment or request
  • Any voluntary work or activities undertaken while on duty for the benefit of the employer
  • Any activities undertaken while on duty with the consent or approval of the employer

Fatal injury

An occupational injury or disease resulting in death.

Fatal Injury Frequency Rate (FIFR)

Defined as the total number of fatal occupational injuries per one billion hours worked. It is calculated based on the following formula: (Total Fatal Injuries*1,000,000,000/Total Hours Worked).

Federal jurisdiction

Federal jurisdiction covers:

  • works, undertakings or businesses that are within the legislative authority of Parliament, and
  • work declared to be for the general advantage of 2 or more provinces outside the exclusive authority of the provincial legislatures

Federal jurisdiction defined under the Canada Labour Code covers specific industries and their infrastructures. Consult the section Industry sectors under federal jurisdiction for the list of federally regulated industries.

Full-time Equivalent (FTE)

Refers to the employment of one person full time. It may also refer to more than one person part time whose total working time is the equivalent of one person working full time. FTEs are measured in person-years. For example:

  • 100 people employed full time equals 100 FTEs
  • 10 people employed half time equals 5 FTEs
  • all 110 people combined represent 105 FTEs

Minor injury

An occupation injury or disease, excluding disabling injuries, for which treatment at a medical facility is provided.

Occupational injury

Any injury, disease or illness incurred by an employee in the performance of, or in connection with, his or her work.

Annex 2: Data charts

Chart 3.1 (a): Federally regulated industry sectors with the top 3 highest 2019 DIFR value, 2015 to 2019
Chart 3.1a: description follows
Text description of chart 3.1 (a)
Industry 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019
National rate (the federal jurisdiction rate) 9.42 9.13 9.17 9.30 9.39
Air transportation 16.71 15.92 16.03 16.29 15.40
Road transportation 17.59 16.26 18.32 19.76 21.20
Postal services and postal contractors 43.65 41.88 41.39 37.82 32.26
Chart 3.1 (b): Federally regulated industry sectors with the top fourth to seventh highest 2019 DIFR value, 2015 to 2019
Chart 3.1b: description follows
Text description of chart 3.1 (b)
Industry 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019
National rate (the federal jurisdiction rate) 9.42 9.13 9.17 9.30 9.39
Water transportation (shipping and ferries) 11.32 12.39 9.68 10.76 10.11
Rail transportation 8.3 8.12 8.87 8.71 10.49
Longshoring, stevedoring, port, harbour operations and pilotage 19.07 19.46 17.89 21.13 11.16
Feed, flour and seed 7.65 10.50 7.62 11.02 12.10
Chart 3.2 (a): Federally regulated industry sectors with the top 3 highest 2019 FIFR value, 2015 to 2019
Chart 3.2a: description follows
Text description of chart 3.2 (a)
Industry 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019
National rate (the federal jurisdiction rate) 26.44 30.33 28.08 34.24 29.64
Feed, flour and seed 0 0 101.62 98.81 54.02
Rail transportation 15.06 16.11 31.62 40.43 71.77
Road transportation 98.65 96.43 91 128.66 112.93
Chart 3.2 (b): Federally regulated industry sectors with the top fourth to seventh highest 2019 FIFR value, 2015 to 2019
Chart 3.2b: description follows
Text description of chart 3.2 (b)
Industry 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019
Air transportation 42.18 22.84 32.34 22.54 48.10
Water transportation (shipping and ferries) 20.72 61.56 0.00 38.02 37.44
Broadcasting (television, radio, internet) 0.00 16.35 52.54 87.80 35.90
Longshoring, stevedoring, port, harbour operations and pilotage 0.00 66.88 0.00 118.39 32.54
National rate (the federal jurisdiction rate) 26.44 30.33 28.08 34.24 29.64
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