Workers Compensation Board of Prince Edward Island

Keeping Fishers Safe

June 07, 2019

With the fishing season in full swing, safety officials want to ensure that Island fishers are working safely. Over the coming weeks, there will be an education and compliance initiative, where Occupational Health and Safety Officials will be visiting wharves to ensure that fishers are wearing their Personal Flotation Devices (PFDs).


Under the, Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Act, a fishing vessel is considered a workplace.  Within the regulations under the Act, there are provisions set out to address worker and employer responsibilities where there is a risk of drowning.


“The goal of the initiative is to protect fishers by ensuring their compliance with the OHS Act and Regulations and raising awareness of the importance of workplace safety,” said Stuart Affleck, Chair of the Workers Compensation Board.


According to a 2017 study by the Globe and Mail, fishing has the single highest fatality rate of any sector in the country. Over the past few years, there have been a number of fatalities in the fishing industry on Prince Edward Island.


“Because the results of not wearing a PFD can be devastating, it is important that we do all that we can to reduce the risk for those working on fishing vessels,” said Tory Kennedy, Acting CEO for the Workers Compensation Board.  “We know that if there is a higher compliance with PEI’s safety legislation, the probability of workplace accidents is reduced.”


For more information about the OHS Act and Regulations, contact the WCB Occupational Health and Safety Division at 902-368-5680 or 1-800-237-5049, or visit the WCB website at


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