Ministry of the
Solicitor General

Amendments to WSIB Operational Policy 12-04-02

Communiqué du commissaire des incendies

Amendments to WSIB Operational Policy 12-04-02

Communiqué 2015-03

February 20, 2015

The Office of the Fire Marshal and Emergency Management (OFMEM) was made aware of fire service concerns regarding the application of Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) Operational Policy 12-04-02, Volunteer Forces, and the rules for coverage as outlined in the policy. The OFMEM met with representatives from the WSIB to collaboratively address overall concerns with the policy and provided recommendations to clarify the rules for coverage in the policy.

On January 2, 2015, the WSIB published an amended version of Operational Policy 12-04-02. The table below outlines the amendments, which are in red.

Current policy, dated January 2, 2015

Rules for coverage

To determine whether a personal injury by accident occurred in the course of a volunteer’s employment, the criteria of place, time, and activity as outlined in 15-02-02, Accident in the Course of Employment are considered.

Volunteers are also covered under this policy and considered to be in the course of employment when responding to an emergency call or alarm from their home, or from their regular employment, whether they are

  • travelling to the emergency or to the local emergency centre, see 15-03-05, Travelling
  • carrying out their duties at the emergency
  • returning to the emergency centre or home after the emergency call or alarm, using the most direct or uninterrupted route.

Additional coverage rules for volunteer firefighters

Volunteer firefighters are also covered while

  • carrying out fire protection services as defined in the FPPA
  • attending training programs required as a condition of employment, and/or
  • participating in fire department training activities.

If required to travel away from the deemed employer’s premises, volunteer firefighters may be covered if the criteria in 15-03-05, Travelling are met.

Application date

This policy applies to all decisions made (regardless of accident date) on or after February 15, 2013.

Enquiries regarding WSIB Operational Policy 12-04-02 should be directed to the WSIB. Fire departments may wish to review and revise, as applicable, any policies that relate to WSIB coverage for volunteer firefighters, and advise their respective human resources department of the amendments to the WSIB operational policy.