2017-01-30 - Boom boat operator

Fatality Alert

On January 30th, a worker at a Kelowna sawmill drowned after the boom boat he was operating sank.

Our condolences go out to the family and co-workers of the deceased.

The RCMP, Coroners Service, Transportation Safety Board and WorkSafeBC are investigating this incident.

This is the 1st manufacturing fatality of 2017. Please review the information below with the objective of preventing similar incidents at your operations.

Although the details of this incident are still unknown, review the following safety information:

  1. Emergency Response – Consider all the types of emergencies that may occur in your operations. Conduct realistic drills to prepare all supervisors and workers to respond to those emergencies. For example: a boat taking on water, evacuation of a worker from an equipment rollover, and access roads blocked by landslides or avalanches.
  2. Regularly inspect all equipment, including personal protective equipment to make sure it is working properly. Floatation devices, pumps, and high visibility clothing all need to be inspected and replaced if necessary.
  3. Pre-shift inspections of mobile equipment are required. Complete a thorough inspection and repair deficiencies before starting the job.
  4. Take a look at your worksite with fresh eyes. Think critically about the operation, identify what potential incidents could occur and come up with an action plan to control those hazards.


  1. BCFSC’s Marine Safety Webpage
  2. Link to an article on the new Marine Forest Safety Advisory Group (page 13)
  3. Marine Safety Alert
  4. Print version of this alert for posting or safety meetings


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