City of Quinte West Case Study

City of Quinte West:

Huge Steps Towards Sustainable Chemicals Management with SDS RiskAssist™

The City of Quinte West is located on the shores of the beautiful Bay of Quinte, at the mouth of the Trent Severn waterway in Ontario, Canada. It is home to more than 40,000 people, thousands of businesses and one of Canada’s largest airforce bases, 8 Wing/CFB Trenton. The City employs hundreds of workers who use hundreds of chemicals across the City in their daily tasks.


When RilleaTech’s team first met Richard Anderson, Health and Safety Officer for the City of Quinte West, he was struggling to maintain control over the use of chemicals in the City. While Richard understood the critical need for chemicals, he also understood the hazards and that worried him. He had avoided “farming out” the management of the City’s WHMIS safety data sheets to online providers because he knew he would lose control of the collection if he didn’t make the effort to regularly manage the paper binders.


When Richard saw SDS RiskAssist™ in action, he knew he had found the solution to his challenges. SDS RiskAssist™ would enable him to more efficiently manage the upkeep of the safety data sheets while helping him prioritize the hazards in chemical collection. Further, it would enable him to share consistent and simple safe-handling instructions City-wide, which would support employee chemical-specific training.


Now in our 4th year of service with the City of Quinte West, the RilleaTech team has supported their progress from an outdated and unmanageable paper binder approach to a collaborative and responsible chemicals management system. SDS RiskAssist™ is now automatically deployed to all City electronic devices and employees have barrier-free access through single sign on. This came in handy when the pandemic force employees to work from home and the City was able to share all standard operating procedures through the already familiar SDS RiskAssist™ web platform.


The City has eliminated over 30% of the chemicals used City-wide and now purchases chemicals with their hazards in mind and not simply price.


Read more about the benefits of SDS RiskAssist™ for municipalities in the following case study.

  • Challenge
  • RilleaTech’s Solution & Results
Challenge
  • Over 300 chemicals city-wide
  • Paper binders for each department/location
  • Time-consuming to update
  • Hazards/risks tracking – an impossible task with limited resources
  • Overwhelming for managers
  • Difficult and intimidating for workers to access
  • Workers lacked specific chemical handling guidance

SDS RiskAssist™ allowed our Management Team to give clear, consistent chemical handling guidance to workers across the City.”

Richard Anderson,

Health & Safety Officer,

City of Quinte West

RilleaTech’s Solution & Results

Rillea’s Solution:

  • Completed city-wide chemical inventory, sourced and reconciled SDSs for all locations to obtain 93% compliance to WHMIS 2015 within 6 weeks of system implementation
  • Customized SDS RiskAssist™ website based on city chemical inventory, available personal protective equipment and city-specific directives
  • Automated hazards database developed as SDSs are uploaded
  • Database is searchable, sortable and filterable by products, hazards and ingredients

Results:

  • Rapid implementation had system functioning in under a week
  • City achieved 100% documentation compliance to WHMIS 2015 with 97% SDSs and status notations on remaining 3% of MSDSs, which are currently unavailable from suppliers
  • Instantly able to identify the following hazards: 5% of products contained designated substances,11% had carcinogenic classifications & 9% had reproductive classifications
  • City eliminated 33% of chemical products due to hazard or obsolescence
  • Conducted risk assessments on remaining 96% of products
  • Implemented single sign on so that employees now have barrier-free, electronic access to clear, consistent one-page chemical summaries with city-specific handling directives
  • Prioritized chemical hazards by department/location are now available for managers/supervisors
  • Identified procurement inefficiencies for similar products across various locations
  • Defined content for more relevant and focused worker chemical-specific training


“SDS RiskAssist™ allowed us to gain an overview of the city’s chemical-related hazards in a very efficient and cost-effective way. It will allow the City of Quinte West to provide precise, relevant chemical-specific training to employees in all departments while meeting the requirements of the Occupational Health and Safety Act thus ensuring good chemical-related workplace safety.


SDS RiskAssist™ grants our employees access to their department catalogue of Safety Data Sheets at any time electronically through the E-Binder. The “One-Page Summary” gives quick and accurate information pertaining to safe use including specific PPE, Incident Response, Special Instructions, storage and proper disposal of all hazardous products in their departments. This benefits employee health and wellness, builds employee morale and is great for our business and the community.”

– Richard Anderson, Health & Safety Officer, City of Quinte West

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