A field study assessing silviculture workers’ behaviour and the level of health and safety training, instruction, and supervision received in the workplace will cross the province this spring and summer.

An estimated 800 workers will be interviewed in 30 silviculture camps and job sites as part of the research project Health and Safety in the Tree Planting Industry. The study is integral to developing the BC Safe Silviculture Project’s baseline study of health and safety practices and education in the silviculture sector. Information will also be collected regarding job satisfaction and industry performance in order to assist in understanding current issues surrounding industry capacity and worker retention. Previous studies suggest the tree planting work force is becoming increasing younger and less experienced. This has important implications for safety training and supervision.

Jordan Tesluk, a veteran tree planter with a masters degree in criminology designed the study based on pilot research he undertook last year. Tesluk will conduct the field survey with the cooperation of silviculture contractors. The baseline study is a critical tool in guiding and measuring the BC Safe Silviculture Project’s effect on health and safety practices and behaviour in the silviculture industry.