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"Point in Time" Regulation Content

Public Health Act

Industrial Camps Health Regulation

B.C. Reg. 427/83

NOTE: Links below go to regulation content as it was prior to the changes made on the effective date. (PIT covers changes made from September 19, 2009 to "current to" date of the regulation.)
Regulation March 30, 2012
Section 1 October 22, 2009

 Regulation BEFORE repealed by BC Reg 70/2012, effective March 30, 2012.

B.C. Reg. 427/83
O.C. 1874/83
Deposited November 18, 1983

Public Health Act

Industrial Camps Health Regulation


1  In this regulation:

"approved" means approved in writing by a medical health officer or a public health inspector;

"camp" means land or premises on which there are cabins, tents, dwellings, bunkhouses or other structures owned, established, operated or maintained by an employer as living quarters for his agents, employees or others, with or without charge;

"common use" means the use of an article or thing by more than one person without its being thoroughly cleansed, laundered or sterilized after each consecutive use;

"communicable disease" means an illness, due to a specific infectious agent or its toxic products, which arises through the transmission of that agent or its product

(a) directly from an infected person or animal, or

(b) indirectly through the agency of an intermediate host vector or the inanimate environment;

"operator" means the person, including a government agency, operating a camp, temporary or otherwise, and includes the owner of the camp;

"short term camp" means a camp that operates for five months or fewer in any twelve-month period;

"vermin" includes rats, mice, cockroaches, bedbugs, flies and any other noxious animal or insect.

[am. B.C. Regs. 181/88, s. 2; 246/2009.]


2  This regulation applies to lumber camps, mining camps, sawmills, railway construction camps, canneries and other similar places where labour is employed but, except for section 27, does not apply to a camp

(a) occupied by less than 5 persons, or

(b) established to meet emergency conditions and occupied for a period of not more than 7 days.

 Responsibility and compliance

3  No person who is an operator shall

(a) operate or manage a camp, or

(b) permit any premises, building, structure, equipment, utensil or other thing used in or as part of a camp to be so used

except in accordance with the standards and requirements of this regulation.

 Supervision and maintenance

4  (1)  The operator shall provide continuous supervision over each camp he operates.

(2)  The operator shall

(a) maintain in good repair all sanitary facilities and appliances in the camp,

(b) maintain the camp and its equipment in a clean and sanitary condition,

(c) provide and maintain at the camp suitable and adequate equipment for the deposit of rubbish, garbage, refuse and waste,

(d) prevent the camp from being littered with rubbish, garbage, refuse or waste, and

(e) cause a legible copy of this regulation to be kept permanently posted in a prominent place in the camp.

 Water supply, quality and source

5  (1)  An adequate supply of safe water shall be provided at all times for drinking and domestic purposes.

(2)  Where a safe public water supply is not available, the water shall be obtained from an approved source.

(3)  The operator shall not use a well as a source of water supply for the camp unless the well is so constructed and located that the water obtained from it is free from contamination.

 Water storage containers

6  (1)  All drinking water storage containers in camps shall be

(a) securely closed,

(b) arranged so that water can be drawn only from a tap, and

(c) maintained clean and free from contamination.

(2)  When water is transported, the water container shall be used for no purpose other than carrying the water and shall be kept adequately covered.

 Dispensing water

7  (1)  No drinking cup shall be in common use.

(2)  Water shall not be dipped from open springs, wells or water containers.

(3)  Where drinking fountains are used, they shall be of an approved angle jet type.

 Cross connections

8  (1)  Where a water supply unfit for drinking purposes is used for fire protection or industrial purposes, there shall be no physical connection between that supply and any approved drinking water supply.

(2)  Suitable warning signs shall be posted at all outlets of the non-drinkable supply.

 Site of camp

9  (1)  Every camp shall be so located that good natural drainage is provided.

(2)  Any area on which a tent, building or other structure is erected, or which is used for camp activities, shall be well drained.

(3)  The camp site shall be chosen so that drainage will not pollute or contaminate any water supply.

 Communicable diseases

10  The operator shall

(a) immediately report to the medical health officer any outbreak of gastrointestinal upsets, including diarrhea, dysentery, food poisoning and similar events, and

(b) ensure that there is compliance with the provisions of B.C. Reg. 4/83, the Communicable Disease Regulation.

 Construction of buildings

11  (1)  No person shall establish or maintain a cabin, dwelling, hut, bunkhouse or other structure used for living quarters in a camp unless

(a) all floors not built on solid concrete or rat proof foundation have a clearance of at least 30 cm between the surface of the ground and the underside of the floor joists,

(b) it is wind and weather proof,

(c) the living quarters and sleeping quarters are provided with heating arrangements that will assure a temperature of at least 18° C during the season in which the cabin, dwelling, bunkhouse or other structure is to be occupied,

(d) every living room, sleeping room, dining room, kitchen and bathroom or toilet room, has adequate artificial or natural lighting,

(e) the floor of every room containing a toilet, and every bathroom and shower room, is finished with a smooth, tight surface, and

(f) the floors and walls of all rooms used for living, sleeping or eating purposes are of a smooth easily cleanable finish and kept clean.

(2)  Subsection (1) (d) shall not apply to temporary tents used for camp purposes.

[am. B.C. Reg. 144/84, s. 1.]


12  All rooms shall be sufficiently well ventilated to prevent the accumulation of disagreeable odours and condensation.

 Sleeping accommodation in short term camps

13  (1)  Where a room is used in a short term camp for sleeping accommodation, the operator shall ensure that there is in that room

(a) an unobstructed clearance of at least

(i)  0.6 m between beds, and

(ii)  1.0 m between each bed and the ceiling, and

(b) individual dry storage space for personal possessions and clothing for each employee using that room for sleeping accommodation.

(2)  The operator shall ensure that, in a short term camp,

(a) no room used for sleeping accommodation is used for drying clothes, and

(b) all mattresses, sheets, pillow cases, blankets and bed covers are kept in a clean and sanitary condition.


14  (1)  The operator shall not permit a room to be used for sleeping accommodation in a camp other than a short term camp unless

(a) each room, not in a factory constructed trailer, used as sleeping accommodation for 2 persons has a net floor area of at least 9 m2 and a cubic air space of at least 21.5 m3 and, for each person more than 2, an additional net floor area of at least 5.5 m2 and an additional cubic air space of at least 13.5 m3,

(b) each room in a factory constructed trailer used as sleeping accommodation has for each person a net floor area of at least 4.5 m2 and a cubic air space of at least 9.5 m3, and

(c) a separate bed, not part of a system or arrangement of double deck or multiple tier bunks, is provided for each employee.

(2)  Suitcases and other articles shall not be stored under beds or bunks unless the bed or bunk has built in drawers.

(3)  Clothes shall not be dried in sleeping rooms.

(4)  All mattresses, sheets, pillows, pillow cases, blankets and bed covers shall be kept in a clean and sanitary condition and clean laundered sheets and pillow cases shall be supplied to each occupant at least once a week and to each new occupant on his arrival.

(5)  No employee shall be permitted to use his own blankets in a bunkhouse or sleeping room.

 Dwelling houses

15  No person shall construct any dwelling, apartment or housekeeping suite in a camp unless

(a) the living room has a net floor area of at least 11 m2,

(b) the kitchen has a net floor area of at least 7 m2,

(c) the bedroom has a net floor area of at least 9 m2, and

(d) it has at least a living room and a kitchen.


16  (1)  No tenant or occupier of a dwelling, apartment or housekeeping suite in a camp shall permit the dwelling, apartment or housekeeping suite to be overcrowded.

(2)  For the purpose of subsection (1), a dwelling, apartment or housekeeping suite is overcrowded at any time when the number of persons sleeping in the dwelling, apartment or housekeeping suite is such that

(a) any 2 of these persons, being 10 years old or more, of opposite sex and not being persons living together as husband and wife, are required to sleep in the same room, or

(b) that number is, in relation to the number and floor area of the rooms, in excess of the permitted number determined in accordance with Schedule A.

 Sewage disposal

17  The operator shall dispose of the sewage in the camp in an approved manner that does not create a nuisance, pollute any stream, lake or other body of water or contaminate a water supply, bathing place or shellfish growing area.


18  In every camp

(a) the toilets shall be at a distance of not more than 30 m from any sleeping room in the camp,

(b) the floors of the toilet room shall be of concrete, wood or other suitable material finished with a smooth, tight surface,

(c) the toilet rooms shall be ventilated to the outside air,

(d) the toilets shall be maintained in a clean and sanitary condition,

(e) water flush toilets shall not be installed in connection with a camp unless they are connected to a public sewerage system or to a properly designed and constructed septic tank and ground absorption system,

(f) where water flush toilets are not used, the toilets shall be so constructed and maintained that

(i)  flies, insects, rats or small domestic animals cannot gain access to the waste materials,

(ii)  the surface or ground water cannot enter the pit or vault,

(iii)  waste material in the privy cannot contaminate a water supply, and

(iv)  self closing seat covers are in operation at all times,

(g) the minimum number of fixtures required in the camp shall be determined in accordance with Schedule B,

(h) no toilet other than a water closet shall be installed in a building containing sleeping, eating or other living accommodation, and

(i) no sanitary privy, chemical closet or frost proof closet shall be installed within any building used for human occupancy, nor within 3.0 m of any dwelling.

 Separate toilets

19  (1)  Where more than one water closet, one lavatory or one bathtub or shower bath is installed in a single room, other than a private dwelling unit, the use of such room shall be restricted to persons of the same sex only.

(2)  Where separate water closet rooms or bathrooms are provided for each sex, each water closet room or bathroom, as the case may be, shall

(a) be closed by full sized doors, and

(b) be clearly and properly marked.

(3)  Where water closet rooms are provided for the exclusive use of males, urinals may be provided for use in those rooms.

 Washing, bathing and laundry facilities

20  (1)  A room or building shall be provided with hot and cold water for washing, bathing and laundering purposes.

(2)  Towels, including roller towels, shall not be made available for common use.

 Dry room

21  Where more than 10 persons are ordinarily employed in a camp, sufficient accommodation in a separate room or building shall be provided to enable the persons employed to dry and change their work clothes conveniently.


22  (1)  Stables shall not be nearer then 38 m to any hospital, cookhouse, eating room, bunkhouse or water course.

(2)  Stables shall be so situated that drainage from them does not contaminate any water course.


23  Repealed. [B.C. Reg. 144/84, s.1.]


24  (1)  Every camp building shall be constructed and maintained so as to exclude vermin.

(2)  An operator who becomes aware of the presence of vermin shall take adequate steps to exterminate the vermin and keep the premises free of them.

 Garbage disposal

25  (1)  Every operator shall

(a) provide at the camp fly tight garbage containers in a convenient location and in ample number,

(b) maintain the garbage containers so that they shall not become foul smelling, unsightly or a breeding place for flies, and

(c) dispose of all garbage and refuse by burial, incineration or other approved method.

(2)  No person at a camp shall dispose of garbage, waste or refuse except in accordance with arrangements made by the operator.


26  No milk or milk products below the standards required by B.C. Reg. 464/81, the Milk Industry Standards Regulation, shall be served in any camp.

 Abandoned camps

27  When a camp, including a camp occupied by less than 5 persons and a camp occupied for 7 days or less, is to be abandoned, the operator shall leave the grounds and buildings in a clean and sanitary condition.


28-29  Repealed. [B.C. Reg. 49/2009, s. 2 (d).]

Schedule A

[Section 16 (2) (b)]

1 In making a determination under this Schedule,

(a) no account shall be taken of children under the age of 1 year,

(b) children between the ages of 1 year and 10 years shall be counted as 1/2, and

(c) all persons who are 10 or more years of age shall be counted as one

No. of rooms in dwelling, apartment
or housekeeping suite
No. of persons permitted in dwelling,
apartment or housekeeping suite
47 1/2

2 For each room in addition to 5, the number of additional persons permitted is 2.

Schedule B

[Section 18 (g)]

1 In making a determination under this Schedule, whenever the camp is for the exclusive use of males, urinals may be substituted for half of the required number of water closets.

No. of persons for Whom
Accommodation is Available at Camp
From Up to and including
Minimum No. of
Water Closets or
Privy Seats
Minimum No. of
Minimum No. of
Lavatories or Wash
1 — 7111
8 — 15213
16 — 30326
31 — 45439
46 — 605412
61 — 756515
76 — 1007620

2 For each group of 6 persons in addition to 100, the number of additional lavatories or wash basins is 1.

3 For each group of 20 persons in addition to 100, the number of additional water closets or privy seats is 1 and the number of additional showers is 1.

[Provisions of the Public Health Act, S.B.C. 2008, c. 28, relevant to the enactment of this regulation: section 115]

 Section 1 definition of "short term camp" BEFORE amended by BC Reg 246/2009, effective October 22, 2009.

"short term camp" means a camp which operates for any period between May 1 and September 30 inclusive;