(L to R) Shane Gravelle, Intern Field Safety Officer, ProActive Safety & First Aid, attends an Inland Gas Upgrades project site with contractor Ren Davidson and Jamie Peterson of FortisBC to ensure workers are following safety rules and regulations.

(L to R) Shane Gravelle, Intern Field Safety Officer, ProActive Safety & First Aid, attends an Inland Gas Upgrades project site with contractor Ren Davidson and Jamie Peterson of FortisBC to ensure workers are following safety rules and regulations.

Partnership makes safety internship possible for Ktunaxa Nation member

Investing in local and Indigenous communities where its projects are located is important to FortisBC. One of the ways the company does that is to help develop local talent. That’s why FortisBC partnered with ProActive Safety & First Aid to establish a safety internship role on its Inland Gas Upgrades (IGU) project for Ktunaxa Nation member Shane Gravelle. FortisBC is funding the one-year internship and ProActive Safety & First Aid is overseeing Shane’s training.

When planning was underway for the IGU project, FortisBC enlisted the services of Cranbrook-based ProActive Safety & First Aid to provide safety solutions for IGU work sites in the Cranbrook and Fording areas. Project work sites are often located in remote areas, a long way from a hospital. Bringing a professional safety company on board to oversee project safety is essential to ensuring the safety of workers on site. ProActive Safety & First Aid provided experienced safety professionals on both sides of the spectrum: field safety officers to help with accident prevention and medics to provide first aid if an accident occurred.

Karen Barton, Field Safety Officer with ProActive Safety & First Aid (centre), is one of the company’s seasoned professionals, and a mentor to some of the company’s less experienced officers. She reviews the day’s work schedule with Randi Loski, FortisBC Construction Manager (L) and Shane Gravelle, Intern Field Safety Officer, ProActive Safety & First Aid (R).

Karen Barton, Field Safety Officer with ProActive Safety & First Aid (centre), is one of the company’s seasoned professionals, and a mentor to some of the company’s less experienced officers. She reviews the day’s work schedule with Randi Loski, FortisBC Construction Manager (L) and Shane Gravelle, Intern Field Safety Officer, ProActive Safety & First Aid (R).

Internship role developed to support local business and Ktunaxa community

The fact Proactive Safety & First Aid is both a local and Ktunaxa member-owned business inspired the IGU project team to look for ways they could support it. Funding a safety internship role on the IGU project for a member of the Ktunaxa Nation would not only support this local company, but also the greater Ktunaxa community.

“This idea had a couple of elements that are so important to FortisBC,” says Erinn Mah, Indigenous talent specialist, FortisBC. “We want to leverage opportunities to engage and develop key talent, and of course safety is always a priority for us.”

Over the course of his field safety officer internship, Shane will gain valuable on-the-job work experience and take the courses necessary to obtain his National Construction Safety Officer certification.

Want to read the whole story? Read more about Cranbrook-based ProActive Safety & First Aid and find out how its seasoned professionals provided the mentorship and guidance necessary to make Shane’s safety internship possible.