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Xi Safety Inc blogs about the Canadian Utility Safety Professional Designation

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Xi Safety Inc today looks at the Canadian Utility Safety Designation presently being offered in Canada.

Certified Utility Safety Professional – The Defining Benchmark
If you have dedicated your career to providing safety and operations leadership in the utility industry, now is the time to enhance your professional status with the CUSP certification. Join a distinguished group of hundreds of individuals who have demonstrated their job safety knowledge.
The Certified Utility Safety Professional certification program is the only program that offers safety credentials to utilities, related contractors and communication providers. It is designed to provide a career path and individual growth for employees and increased value for employers.
In partnership, employers and employees promote a culture where safe utility work practices are the standard.

There are two designation that can be attained and are as follow

For more information you can follow this link over to the good folks at CUSP


Slim Margin Safety Solutions

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With tight cash margins impacting every business across western Canada, one thing is clear: any workplace incident can take longer to recover from financially when margins are razor thin.

The Problem

I’ll give you an example. in 2012, issued a study done by Helmerich & Payne International (LINK). The study is relevant reading for anyone interested in the total cost of injuries. Here’s an excerpt:

“Bottom line: As discussed in the previous case study, one financial metric used by drilling contractors is margins. The drilling contractor in this case study had a per-rig margin of $5,000/day. Because the LTI resulted in 94 days of lost productivity from that worker and $144,000 in total costs, that rig made no contribution to the bottom-line profits of the drilling contractor for the next month because the margin was used to offset the direct and indirect costs of the injury.”

One thing remains clear: With slimmer operating margins, any workplace injury that leads to a WCB claim will take longer to recover from.

The Reaction

Slim margin environments call for strategic cuts to the operating budget if the company is to remain in business. No department is immune from cuts, and when trimming fat, it can make sense for organizations to target middle and senior management roles.

For the cost of one territory manager, you can employ two juniors, give them a small raise and a fancy new title while doubling their work load and still come out ahead.

This is in line with anecdotal evidence we have seen with our colleagues. Many companies have opted to jettison highly experienced, but less credentialed Safety Managers and have replaced them with more credentialed but less experienced personnel.

This trend is not limited to HSE professionals, but is even more manifest in the pipeline inspector market. The introduction of API 1169 will further sift the book-learned from the experienced folks.

Older inspectors might not see the need to take another industry ticket, and those that do will see it as a necessary evil. There is a serious risk to credential-ism, and that’ a flood of “qualified” individuals how know just enough to be dangerous, not only for themselves, but for their employer.

But, you know what? The Market Doesn’t Care. The market wants credentials, at the loss of experience. Experience is akin to fashion – a course of action that proved correct in the past may no longer work in a new paradigm, and for that reason experience has a decreasing marginal rate of return.

In the interest of trashing both sides of the argument, credential-ism isn’t all it’s cracked up to be either. Someone who was a hairstylist yesterday, but passed an industry ticket and now they are inspecting your welds does not sound like a long term solution at ensuring the safety of the public when it comes to mitigating hydrocarbon releases caused by a weld failure.

If you really want to delve into the relationship between credentialed knowledge versus experience-based knowledge, have a read of this paper entitled ” Paperwork at the service of safety? Workers’ reluctance against written procedures exemplified by the concept of ‘seamanship’.

Replace “seafarer” with “Pipeliner” and you have a perfect analog for a debate that’s raging within the pipeline construction market: sidelining high-priced and experienced knowledge in favor of credentialed paper based knowledge can do more harm in the long run, even though it makes financial sense in the short term.

The Solution

This is where Xi Safety sees a huge opportunity, because sometimes the market gets it wrong. But the market eventually corrects itself as perceptions adapt to new information. We believe we have found a market niche to better serve our clients who want to be well positioned for the next upswing.

Already some of our clients are falling behind on their safety registries, which places them at a disadvantage when it comes to bidding on upcoming work.

We are ready to work with clients who are interested in deploying capital strategically in order to mitigate downside risks, control costs and remain competitive in a tight margin market.

Here’s what we are prepared to do:

1. FREE advice to estimators and bidders who are preparing bids and need to include estimates for HSE personnel, emergency, security and even PPE.

2. Access to Experienced HSE Managers on an hourly contract or part time basis to mentor your HSE staff and provide strategic advice.

3. Executive Safety Coaching to assist Board Members with re-aligning HSE program goals and objectives.

4. Providing expertise to mid-sized and small companies in the commercial construction, trucking and manufacturing markets.

5. Advice on how to leverage technology to lower the costs of paper-based safety management systems.

Contact Us Now

While we are giving away the farm to our competitors in revealing our market strategy, we are confident that our pricing remains fair, and our references of past clientele will deliver ample credibility when it comes to sourcing out some bolt-on horsepower for your Health, Environmental, Security and Safety objectives.

Drop us a line at to get started.



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In today’s marketplace and economy many companies are faced with challenges.  In discussion with many in the industry we are hearing that clients are looking at deploying capital strategically to mitigate downside risks, control costs and remain competitive in a tight margin market, yet still deliver and maintain positive HESS Metrics.


Major Projects:  Facility, Pipelines, Oilsands (Construction & Maintenance), Transmission & Distribution, Exploration, Drilling and Completions, Civil & Highway Projects.

Commercial & Small Contractor Services:  Bronze, Silver and Gold Contractor Packages (including SECOR, COR & ISNET Registries.

First Nations Partnerships & Alliances:  XI Safety is active with several First Nations groups and we are seeking additional joint venture partners and assist them in understanding and taking them through the required prequalification processes to attain potential work and demonstrating their efficiency as a safe, reliable contractor(s).

Licensed Recruitment Agency:  When you need temporary personnel for any short term work, Xi looks after ensuring your are receiving a vetted HESS professional from our candidate databank.  HESS expertise is our business, we have all worked in the industry and we understand your challenges in obtaining the right candidate.  We look after the rest, including payroll.


Clients receive access to Canada’s Certified Safety Professionals and Specialists(c), our vetted databank of experienced project HESS Managers, Leads and Field Advisors.  Professionals who have done the work and are excellent at what they do.

Assisting our clients in project set up, mobilization and ongoing improvement to attain best in class safety metrics.  In other words, project ready.

Demonstrating the latest in technology and how to leverage it to lower the costs of paper based safety management systems.

Using our revolutionary online training software that provides each client with the most up to date training available safety and a suite of services to self manage the system.



IN CALGARY CALL US AT 403 453 1388


“no job is so important, no task so critical, that time cannot be taken to do it safely and in an environmentally responsible manner.”






Event Safety Management and Xi Safety TM Inc

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 Recently we were asked about providing services for an event to be held in the community.  Event Safety Management is just as important as any project safety management plan and even more so, because in addition to having to consider and plan around the actual event performers, you also have to factor in public safety as well.

We like to think that risk management can go one step further to actually be risk prevention planning.  At Xi Safety we believe that event safety management is simply more than putting a few people in security uniforms and possibly adding in a requirement of first aid.

Many of us have seen in the media actual live footage of outdoor fairs or concerts where disaster has struck, whether its been a stage collapse, rigging failures, severe weather or other factors that can affect for example, movie productions or outdoor venues.

But to stage a successful event, it all has to start with a well thought out and documented Event Safety Management Plan.  At Xi Safety Inc we’ve developed an excellent blue print that takes into account how local OHS Acts, Regulations, and assorted codes not only provide the frame work for events to be safely staged, but also that much needed road map that takes us through the 30 plus special considerations that are required to go into successful event planning to allow events to be staged without incident.  If your organization or company requires professional event safety management, including film and commercial productions, concerts and other large scale events, Xi Safety Inc and Event Safety Management come together seamlessly with your idea and our expertise.  From Event Safety planning to your medical, security, health and safety needs  at your facility, Xi Safety Inc has you covered.



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So you’re a tech savvy safety advisor, environmental inspector or even a pipeline inspector and you went and jumped on the latest craze taking North America by storm “Drones” or as the regulating body in Canada likes to refer to them as Unmanned Aerial vehicles (UAV’s).

While spending time at the local soccer field honing your skills as a drone pilot a lightbulb comes on and you think to yourself I can make some money with this thing. Sweet I’ll have it out on my next project and I’ll be a rock star with the best daily reports and photos the construction manager has ever seen. NOT so fast there Mr. Eager B. Beaver.

There are laws in Canada that regulate what we can and can’t do with our high-tech tool. Yes, I call it a tool because that’s what it is a tool to manage risk, in this case it minimizes exposure to workplace hazards like steep slopes, hazardous environments, working on or near water, and driving to list a few. Drones also have the ability to provide real time data to work progress and issues arising out on a spread kilometer’s ahead of you. To the extent that if you are within cellular phone coverage you can save real time photos or video footage to your mobile device and send it back to the construction office for immediate response saving time and money on tight schedule driven projects.

So, I’ve been flying my drone’s right out of the box for the last two years, I’ve had several models and learned some tough costly lessons along the way. I am currently flying a Phantom 3 Professional. Loaded to the max right out of the box it’s enough to make a gear guy cry. It includes a 4K Video / 12 Megapixel Photo Camera, 3-Axis Stabilization Gimbal, Easy to Fly, Intelligent Flight System, Live HD View, Dedicated Remote Controller, Powerful Mobile App w/ Auto Video Editor, Vision Positioning for Indoor Flight. Never mind all the aftermarket things you can buy thru Amazon or other aftermarket sites. So I’m not a professional Drone pilot, I’ve learned to fly mine just like everyone else out there. As I got more into flying mine and seeing how it could be used not just for fun but could also have huge impacts in my work environment as well, I started asking questions and depending on whom I asked I got a million and one different answers. I was finally pointed in the right direction late last year and the great team at Transport Canada has help our immensely. Below is an overview of some of the questions I get asked and by no means does it capture everything, but it will get you pointed in the right direction.

I highly recommend taking the Canadian Unmanned UAV Training Course. This course is a 1.5 day condensed UAS ground school course to both civil and commercial operators. It covers the following topics that are all deemed essential by Transport Canada:
• Aerodynamics
• Air law and regulations
• Communications
• Weather and basic UAS 101
• Aviation charts and flight supplements

Students also receive instruction for an Industry Canada Restricted Radio Operators License (Air). Upon the successful completion of the radio exam, students will then receive a radio license, which allows them to operate and monitor aviation frequencies. CCUVS and Canadian Unmanned have successfully trained over 800 students and offer this course both in house and on location as required. It is recognized by Transport Canada and seen as most beneficial when indicated on a SFOC application.
What makes a UAV a model aircraft in the eyes of Transport Canada (TC)?

“Model aircraft” means an aircraft, the total weight of which does not exceed 35 kg (77.2 pounds) that is mechanically driven or launched into flight for recreational purposes. By definition a UAV is no longer a model aircraft when:
– Owned by a company not an individual.
– Used for profit.

My model plane/copter has a camera on it and I’ve started making money selling the photos/videos, is this allowed?
As described by TC as soon as you make money or become contracted to use you model aircraft it no-longer qualifies as a model aircraft. Your model aircraft is now a UAV and requires a Special Flight Operations Certificate (SFOC) to fly.

I’m using my UAV for profit or the success of my business depends on photos/video I take, what do I need to know?
You need a Special Flight Operations Certificate (SFOC) every time your UAV is in Canadian Airspace, Yes even testing and development outdoors requires an SFOC. Don’t panic obtaining an SFOC is common place in Canada, and as of May 17th 2012 it’s free. This is because the law strictly prohibits UAVs without these certificates.
602.41 No person shall operate an unmanned air vehicle in flight except in accordance with a special flight operations certificate or an air operator certificate.

How do I get an SFOC?
A: The procedure for obtaining an SFOC is listed here. The most important in preparing your SFOC application is that you prove to Transport Canada that you will not be putting the public in danger nor will you be disrupting air traffic.
– Please see the TC staff guideline when creating your submission,

What does it cost to applying for an SFOC?
For UAVs there is NO COST involved in applying for and obtaining an SFOC.
Do I need to get a different SFOC for every day that I fly?
No! As it was explained by Transport Canada you can apply for to get an SFOC that indicates a range of dates and times.

How big of an area can I apply for in my SFOC?
As mentioned above the primary purpose of an SFOC is to ensure the safety of the public and air traffic. Your SFOC application will be individually reviewed by Transport Canada staff specific to the region. As long as you follow outline all the prerequisites outlined here:

Can you give us some of the examples SFOC applications provided by TC?
The example was of an established RC pilot contracted to take an aerial photo of a pipeline right of way every Tuesday during the growing season. His application would look something like:
– Between May 18th to September 28th 2012, Every Tuesday between 9am and 9pm.
– Alternative date for flight will be the Tuesday between 4pm and 7pm.
– Alternative date for flight will be the next Wednesday between 8am and 6pm.
– A note from the local RM indicating they have no objection to the flights.
– A description of his craft.
– A note from the farmer indicating that there will be no people or equipment on his field during any of the operational times (Security).
– An aerial/satellite photo for the area of operations.
– On this photo/map he will indicate takeoff and landing zones. Remember to note any obstacles between the takeoff and landing zones.
– On this photo/map he will indicate the boundaries of where he will be operating.
– He will then indicate the projected flight path will photos will be taken.

This isn’t all of the points outlined . Note that all these points need to be completed and submitted.
Each SFOC is individually reviewed. It was mentioned that TC will work with you, within reason, if your application is missing certain points. They may also request a demonstration of you and/or your crafts abilities.
I plan to take photos & video of my niece’s sports games for the league to use for future promotional material, what do I need to know?
Transport Canada advised that a 100 foot horizontal buffer between a crowd and itself.
I’m using my craft for recreational use. What kind of restrictions are in place for non-commercial, recreational crafts?
The law states:
602.45 No person shall fly a model aircraft or a kite or launch a model rocket or a rocket of a type used in a fireworks display into cloud or in a manner that is or is likely to be hazardous to aviation safety.
What if I break the rules?

Well, for starters, we don’t want to hear about it here! Section 602.41 as a designated provision, has an individual penalty in the amount of $5,000.00 and a corporation penalty of $25,000.00.

Okay, I’m obeying all the rules. Are there any other guidelines for safe and responsible “Model Aircraft” operations?

Yes. In the USA the RCAPA (the RC aerial photography association) has some excellent guidelines that will help out immensely as a starting point.
Reference material for this article comes from the following:
Transport Canada
Canadian UAS/UAV* Aerial Photography & Video service providers and other resources:
Canadian Centre for Unmanned Vehicle Systems

Well, there you have it, thanks to our resident in house Drone Master, Mark Lindenbach. If you would like to know more about the use of Drones and how Xi Safety can assist you with their use on any of your projects, give us a call at 403 730 0806 or