New Farm Building Code to Be Monitored Closely

CANADA - Manitoba's labor and immigration minister says her department will be closely monitoring the effectiveness of the province's new agricultural building code when it takes effect this fall, according to Bruce Cochrane.
calendar icon 8 September 2010
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Effective from 1 November Manitoba's first agricultural building code is scheduled to take effect.

The new code mirrors what is in place for industrial buildings and applies to new construction over 600 square metres or to buildings undergoing extensive renovation.

Labor and Immigration Minister Jennifer Howard says officials have tried to be sensitive to the fact that there are unique challenges on the farm to create a safer environment while recognizing that some standards that haven't been in place before are necessary.

Jennifer Howard-Manitoba Labor and Immigration Minister

We have, through the Fire Commissioner's Office and the Building Standards Code Committees, they have been talking to all kinds of producers, vegetable growers and pork producers, people that work in the poultry industry and we've worked with them as well as animal welfare groups and fire fighters about how can we protect the lives and safety of all of those people that are involved in farming.

I think it's been a very constructive process.

It's taken awhile to hopefully get it to a place where we think we've got a reasonable approach to farm safety but we're also going to continue to talk to producer groups as we move forward because I think often you bring in a new regulation you don't really know how it's going to work until you start testing it out, until people start building new buildings and working with the regulation so we're going to watch as it comes into effect and we're going to be aware if there are questions or concerns.

If things aren't working the way we thought then we'll have to take a new look at it.

But I hope that, by really involving all of those producer groups in advance, that we've come to a farm building code that's going to work for farmers, it's going to work for fire fighters and it's going to hopefully protect the lives and safety of everybody involved in farming.

Ms Howard says officials will be monitoring the new code as people work with it and will be open to suggestions to make it work even better.

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