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Designated Substances

A designated substance is a biological, chemical, or physical agent (or combination thereof) to which the exposure of a worker is prohibited, regulated, restricted, limited, or controlled. According to the Designated Substances regulation (O. Reg. 490/09) under the Occupational Health and Safety Act (OHSA), the following chemical agents are prescribed as designated substances:

  • 1. Acrylonitrile
  • 2. Arsenic
  • 3. Asbestos (includes the following)
    • Actinolite
    • Amosite
    • Anthophyllite
    • Chrysotile
    • Crocidolite
    • Tremolite
  • 4. Benzene
  • 5. Coke oven emissions
  • 6. Ethylene oxide
  • 7. Isocyanates
  • 8. Lead
  • 9. Mercury
  • 10. Silica
  • 11. Vinyl chloride.

See the Chemical Hazards web page for links to information on the following topics:

  • Asbestos
  • Lead
  • Silica.

W150 – Health and Safety Advisory: Scleroderma

Inhaling silica can not only cause silicosis or lung cancer, but also scleroderma, a disorder of connective tissue that holds various body parts together. This advisory contains helpful advice to reduce your risk of exposure.

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W152 – Health and Safety Advisory: Heat Stress and Type 3 Asbestos Operations

In Ontario, asbestos remediation requires full-body protective coveralls, head coverings, and other personal protective equipment such as respirators, gloves, and boots. These types of protective clothing can put workers at increased risk of developing heat-related illnesses.

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W157 – Health and Safety Advisory: Gaskets, Boilers, and Asbestos

If you work around boilers and pipes, you should know that friable asbestos (asbestos that is easily crumbled, pulverized, or powdered) was installed in some boiler components until around 1985.

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W158 – Health and Safety Advisory: Asbestos in Elevator Components

Elevator mechanics may be exposed to asbestos-containing material during the course of their work. Asbestos-related illnesses such as mesothelioma and asbestosis are the number-one cause of occupational disease-related deaths for workers in the construction trades.

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W117 – Occupational Health Risks: Carpenters

This four-page booklet contains prevention information for carpenters and a diagnostic toolkit for physicians and primary health providers. For workers, it lists tasks and possible hazards and outlines ways carpenters can protect their health. For physicians, it lists occupational diseases and hazardous agents encountered by carpenters, and provides diagnostic criteria for screening, early detection, and diagnosis.

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W120 – Occupational Health Risks Booklet

This booklet is a collection of 15 occupational health risk brochures for workers in trades that are at an increased risk of exposure to hazardous agents and the development of occupational diseases. These brochures include prevention information for workers and a diagnostic toolkit for physicians and primary health providers.

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W106 – Occupational Health Risks: Acoustic and Drywall Trades

A four-page booklet with prevention information for workers in the acoustic and drywall trades and a diagnostic toolkit for physicians and primary health providers.

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W103 – Occupational Health Risks: Boilermakers

A four-page booklet with prevention information for workers and a diagnostic toolkit for physicians and primary health providers.

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W111 – Occupational Health Risks: Electrical Workers

A four-page booklet with prevention information for electrical workers and a diagnostic toolkit for physicians and primary health providers.

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W107 – Occupational Health Risks: Elevator and Escalator Trades

A four-page booklet with prevention information for elevator and escalator workers and a diagnostic toolkit for physicians and primary health providers.

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W112 – Occupational Health Risks: Insulation Trade

A four-page booklet with prevention information for insulation workers and a diagnostic toolkit for physicians and primary health providers.

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W113 – Occupational Health Risks: Ironworkers

A four-page booklet with prevention information for ironworkers and a diagnostic toolkit for physicians and primary health providers.

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W104 – Occupational Health Risks: Masonry and Allied Trades

A four-page booklet with prevention information for workers in the masonry and allied trades and a diagnostic toolkit for physicians and primary health providers.

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W102 – Occupational Health Risks: Millwrights

A four-page booklet with prevention information for millwrights and a diagnostic toolkit for physicians and primary health providers.

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W114 – Occupational Health Risks: Operating Engineers

A four-page booklet with prevention information for operating engineers and a diagnostic toolkit for physicians and primary health providers.

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W116 – Occupational Health Risks: Painters

A four-page booklet with prevention information for painters and a diagnostic toolkit for physicians and primary health providers.

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W101 – Occupational Health Risks: Pipe Trades

A four-page booklet with prevention information for workers in the pipe trades and a diagnostic toolkit for physicians and primary health providers.

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W115 – Occupational Health Risks: Refrigeration Workers

A four-page booklet with prevention information for refrigeration workers and a diagnostic toolkit for physicians and primary health providers.

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W109 – Occupational Health Risks: Rodworkers

A four-page booklet with prevention information for rodworkers and a diagnostic toolkit for physicians and primary health providers.

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W108 – Occupational Health Risks: Roofers

A four-page booklet with prevention information for roofers and a diagnostic toolkit for physicians and primary health providers.

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W105 – Occupational Health Risks: Sheet Metal Workers

A four-page booklet with prevention information for sheet metal workers and a diagnostic toolkit for physicians and primary health providers.

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W130 – Owner's Duties: Designated Substances on Construction Projects

The Occupational Health and Safety Act requires that a project owner identify designated substances on the project and provide a list to prospective constructors as part of the tendering information. This guide provides info on preparing the owner's report and includes a report form. 5 pages. Also available in French (W130F).

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IHSA028 – Q&A on Occupational Health and Safety Awareness Training

This poster helps explain the new regulation that will require health and safety awareness training for every worker and supervisor under the Occupational Health and Safety Act. Full Colour PDF. 11" x 17"

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