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Safety in the News: Hollywood edition

By Caitlin Kehoe

When I think about the film industry, I tend to think of glitz and glamour and how much fun it must be to live the life of a movie star. What I don’t think about as often— at least, I didn’t before I started this job—are the safety procedures and precautions that are in place on a film set.

I’ve become much more safety conscious of late and I fully appreciate that, as one of the news stories below illustrates, accidents can happen in the film industry just like they can anywhere else.

Remember, whether you’re a movie star or an (equally glamorous) summer student like me, you always have the right to refuse unsafe work. Safety is the top priority no matter how glitzy the job.

maze runner

Image source:

Have a look at what’s been going on in safety news:

Fox Productions failed to keep Maze Runner star safe on set. After conducting an investigation, WorkSafeBC has determined that the serious injuries Dylan O’Brien, lead actor of the Maze Runner film franchise, sustained during filming were the result of unsafe work practices. In March, O’Brien was rushed to a Vancouver hospital after he was struck by a car while performing what WorkSafeBC said was an unplanned and unrehearsed stunt.

Fatality at Alberta fertilizer plant. An investigation is underway at a plant north of Edmonton where a 30-year-old man died after being buried under the phosphate rock he was working with. A second employee was working with the man during the incident and is unharmed.

Edmonton worker seriously injured on the job. A 52-year-old man was rushed to the University of Alberta Hospital in serious condition after he was injured while disassembling an air-conditioning unit at an east Edmonton HVAC company. The incident is currently under investigation.

“Sleepidemic” affecting a third of Canadian youth. A recent study found that a combination of too much screen time and a lack of exercise is making it difficult for Canadian kids to fall asleep at night. Lack of sleep can cause hyperactivity, low IQ scores and depression. It also increases the risk of injury. According to the study, teenagers aged 14 to 17 should get between eight and 10 hours of sleep per night and younger kids require even more.

Canadian bus drivers rally for safer work environment. More than 100 transit workers from across the country rallied in Kelowna this month to proclaim their need for job safety. In order to protect themselves from the verbal and physical attacks they regularly endure, the drivers want all busses to be installed with barriers that can be lowered in the case of threats. On average, there are two physical assaults on Kelowna bus drivers each month. In May, however, four assaults occurred on one day.

New committee launched to ensure work safety at Samsung. An independent panel lead by three Korean university professors has been appointed to monitor work safety at Samsung factories. The launch comes after an agreement between Samsung and a group of former employees who contracted fatal diseases, such as leukemia, while working for the company. The panel, which includes 10 other academics and medical professionals, will recommend ways in which the technology giant’s safety practices can be improved. The work is expected to take three to six years.


Did you catch any other safety stories in the news lately? Let us know what you found in the comments below or tweet us @HeadsUpAB.

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