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Canadians say trade standards important for safety: survey

Toronto - When it comes to safety, Canadians trust expert industry approval. According to a recent survey commissioned by the Canadian Welding Bureau (CWB), 97% of Canadians agree that construction work, including welding contractors and steel...


Toronto – When it comes to safety, Canadians trust expert industry approval. According to a recent survey commissioned by the Canadian Welding Bureau (CWB), 97% of Canadians agree that construction work, including welding contractors and steel fabricators, should be overseen by a national organization and held to a common Canadian standard.

CWB is the regulator of welding professionals and companies throughout Canada, and works to ensure that each project involving welding is completed and overseen by certified and accredited professionals.

Craig Martin, vice-president of public safety at CWB, said, “Since founding CWB in 1947, Canadians have taken a position of leadership in the global welding industry and developed one of the first welding certification standards to ensure that the welding process provided consistent and high quality results. We are a standard Canadians should be proud of.”

But there is a contradiction amongst survey recipients. When asked to rank importance of features when it comes to keeping Canadian buildings, bridges and other key infrastructure, such as pipelines safe — design comes out on top (39% ranking it as important) while certified tradespeople comes out near the bottom (13% ranking this as important). Quality of materials comes in second (26%) and regular inspection third (21%).

“Most people assume that if a bridge or building is designed to meet the standards, it is being built to those standards,” says Martin. “Unfortunately that is not always the case. Industry needs to continue to enforce those standards from design through to building and maintenance.”

When considering the safety of a product, nearly all Canadians feel that expert industry approval is important, and three in four (76%) view it as very important. Almost half of us consider products made in Canada to be safer than those made elsewhere (44%).

“Welding is all around us, so being able to count on an industry standard should be important to all Canadians,” said Martin.

CWB’s certification programs have expanded beyond the welding of steel to offer programs for aluminum welding, resistance welding, welding electrodes and welding inspectors, among others. In all cases, the programs are based on standards produced by the Canadian Standards Association.

For more information on CWB or to find out how to become certified, visit www.eng.cwbgroup.org.

About the Survey

As part of a national online omnibus survey, Canadian residents were asked a series of questions regarding the safety of products and infrastructure, accreditation for internationally trained workers, and the need for national oversight and standards.

Surveys were conducted with 1,017 residents over the age of 18. Sample quotas were set and the data were statistically weighted to ensure the sample’s regional, age and gender composition reflects that of the actual Canadian population according to the 2011 Census. The survey took place from November 26 to 30, 2012.