OHS Code Explanation Guide

Published Date: July 01, 2009
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Part 19 Powered Mobile Equipment

Section 279 Refueling

Subsections 279(1) and 279(2)

Fuel vapours can create an explosion hazard if a source of ignition is present. While being refuelled, no worker is permitted to smoke within 7.5 metres of a vehicle. The definition of “vehicle” includes powered mobile equipment. Similarly, no worker can refuel a vehicle if the vehicle is within 7.5 metres of any source of ignition.

A motor vehicle or watercraft cannot be refuelled while its engine is running unless, as permitted by subsection 279(4), a manufacturer designs, or a professional engineer certifies a fuelling system and safe work practices that allow the engine to be left running during refuelling.

Subsection 279(3)

Properly dispensing flammable fuel can significantly reduce the hazard to which workers might otherwise be exposed. This subsection specifies precautions that must be taken to minimize the potential for fuel spillage and/or inadvertent overfilling of fuel tanks. In general, the employer must ensure that workers maintain direct control when fuelling and do not use an object or device that is not an integral part of the hose nozzle valve assembly to block flow control devices in the “open” position.

Subsection 279(4)

As mentioned in subsection 279(1), a vehicle’s engine can be left running during refuelling if the fuelling system and related safe work practices have been designed by the manufacturer or certified by a professional engineer.