Responding to Work-Related Emergencies
Effective date: March 1, 2016
Application: Workers responding to work-related emergencies on and after the effective date.
Policy subject: Decision making - Injuries
Establish guidelines for adjudicating claims where workers are injured while responding to work-related emergencies at the worksite that occur outside the normal course of employment.
Work-related emergency, for the purpose of this policy, means emergency situations that arise out of employment, but occur outside the normal course of the worker’s employment.
- Section 2(1)(r) of The Workers’ Compensation Act, 2013 (the “Act”) directs that “’injury’ means all or any of the following arising out of and in the course of employment:
- the results of a wilful and intentional act, not being the act of the worker;
- the results of a chance event occasioned by a physical or natural cause;
(ii.1) a disabling or potentially disabling condition caused by an occupational disease;
- any disablement.”
- Section 20(1)(b) of the Act states that the board shall have exclusive jurisdiction to examine, hear and determine “whether any injury has arisen out of or in the course of an employment.”
- Workers who are injured while responding to work-related emergencies at the worksite that occur outside the normal course of the worker’s employment, will be considered to be in the course of employment if they are reasonably expected to respond to the emergency. If the WCB considers the worker to be in the course of employment, coverage will be provided for any injuries sustained.
- The WCB considers a worker to be reasonably expected to respond to a work-related emergency where the worker is seen to have the:
- expertise; and
required to respond to work-related emergencies.
- Coverage is not dependent upon whether the worker receives remuneration from the employer for responding to the work-related emergency at the worksite.
- Coverage begins from the time of notification of the work-related emergency, including travel to and from the emergency site, and is not restricted to normal hours of work.
(1) January 1, 2014. References updated in accordance with The Workers’ Compensation Act, 2013.
(2) POL 28/77, Injuries, Responding to Emergency (effective July 12, 1977 to February 29, 2016).