Category Archives: General Safety

Outside Storage for Flammable Fuels

Fire codes prohibit storage of camp fuels of any type inside University Buildings

Therefore the University has provided the field-intense departments outside storage cages which are located at South Campus near the Vehicle Pool Building. Cage # 2 is labeled EAS; keys can be signed out from Room 1-26 ESB. The cage is available from 7:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. weekdays. Vehicle Pool locks the compound after­ hours and on weekends so you need to organize your field trips so that you have removed your camp fuels prior to lock down.

The outdoor storage cage is provided to store gasoline and propane cylinders.

Once field season is over, you can aerate gas containers and store them in your storage areas, but be sure that all gasoline fumes have been eliminated. Engines and machinery that contain fuels should be drained prior to storing them away for the winter.

DO NOT STORE GASOLINE, BUTANE, PROPANE TANKS, PROPANE CYLINDERS, OR ANY FIELD EQUIPMENT CONTAINING FUEL INSIDE ANY UNIVERSITY BUILDING. (Not even inside a flammable cabinet.)

MSDS Sites

Useful Links to find Material Safety Data Sheets

The WHMIS legislation states that the MSDS sheet must be kept three years in date. Many people do not know where to look for the updated information, so below are a number of links for you to check to locate the updated MSDS sheets for your lab.

Try to obtain MSDS sheets from the same manufacturer where the original controlled product is from; ­but if the original manufacturer no longer carries that product, any MSDS supplier who carries the product will do.  It is important to provide workers with the updated information on the controlled products they are working with.

The Office of Environmental Health & Safety has provided some MSDS links; please click on the following link to go to their web-page at EH&S MSDS link

Other useful sites are:

Incident Reporting Procedures

Reporting injuries/incidents procedures:

There are several steps that are important to follow when reporting on the job incidents­ or injuries. On the job incidents are considered any injuries that occur in the buildings, labs or when in the field.

There are three main aspects when reporting an incident or injury:

  • first response: treating the injured person
  • recording details of the incident (who, where, when, treatment)
  • notifying the department Safety Officer,Assistant Chair (Admin), or Chair. They are then responsible to notify the Office of Environmental Health & Safety and Risk Management. Workers Compensation Claims are handled through Human Resources, but cannot be filed until the incident is reported through the correct channels.

The type of injury will control the response.  Below are some examples:

In a teaching lab:

Undergrad student receives a minor injury during a lab.

  1. notify the TA.
  2. treat injury with supplies from the lab first aid kit. record information using the First Aid Report form, stored in the first aid kit. Copy must be given to the Assistant Chair (Admin), and not left in the First Aid Kit.
  3. TA should inform the Lab Coordinator as soon as possible.
  4. First Aid Kit Report form:  First Aid Form

In a research lab/other area:

Graduate Student receives a chemical burn while running an experiment

  1. rinse the area with cold water for at least 15 minutes
  2. seek medical attention for all chemical burns,  student should take a hardcopy of MSDS sheet with him/her to Student’s Health Services. (HF burns have a special protocol to follow.) Ensure that someone goes with the injured person to Student Health Services or hospital.
  3. inform their supervisor, and supervisor of the lab where injury occurred if it is not the same person.
  4. write the incident up and file copy with the department Assistant Chair (Admin). The Assistant Chair (Admin) will send copies to the Office of Environmental Health & Safety. When medical attention is sought, WCB forms must also be filed. (See Serious Injuries in the Lab for WCB forms.)
  5. EH&S-Report an Injury/Incidence
  6. give the filled out Injury form to the department Safety Officer.

 

Serious Injury in the Lab:

Summon the appropriate help, all EAS Safety Committee members have First Aid Training

  1. call 911 for an ambulance
  2. begin first aid, use First Aid Kit available in the lab
  3. if possible contact the Lab Supervisor to inform him/her of the accident
  4. any incident where medical assistance has been sought must be recorded and EH&S forms filled within 72 hours of the incident even if student is able to return to work after seeking medical attention. Workman’s Compensation also requires that their forms be filled out if an injury has occurred in the workplace. (WCB forms are at the end of this report – see Serious Accidents in the Field.) If a worker has a workplace injury and medical attention is not sought, the incident should be written up with an EH&S injury/incident report in case of future complications for the injured person. See above for EH&S Incident/Injury form.

 

Serious Accident in the Field:

  1. The fact that you are working in the field means that you have your First Aid Training. Apply the appropriate first aid to the situation.
  2. Summon the appropriate EMS service. (Local ambulance, STARS Emergency Link Center)
  3. Contact U of A Supervisor, or Assistant Chair (Admin) or Chair, as soon as possible to report the incident.
  4. Record details of the incidence and file paperwork with the Assistant Chair (Admin) as soon as possible. The Department must fill out the  WCB forms in 72 hours – there are fines for  late reporting. (Fill out the First Aid Kit form, have injured person fill out Part A of the WCB form and file with Assistant Chair (Admin) within 72 hour. The Employer or Faculty Advisor must fill out Part B of the WCB form.) The following link at U of A Human Resources will allow you to access these forms:
  5. WCB Report – Part A: to be filled out by the injured personnel as soon as possible after the event
  6. WCB Report – Part B: to be filled out by the person’s Supervisor and submitted to EH&S within 72 hours
  7. If you have any questions on which form must be filled out in the event of an accident, contact the department Assistant Chair (Admin) or any EAS Safety Committee personnel.

 

All First Aid and Worker’s Compensation forms can be found on the Office of Environmental Health & Safety Site at: EH&S Injury Portal

 

Occupational Health & Safety Legislation Required Reportable Incidences or Near Misses:

There are also reporting requirements under the Occupational Health & Safety Legisaltion regardless of whether the incidents results in a personal injury or an illness.  These specific types of incidents or injuries require IMMEDIATE reporting to the Office of Environmental Health & Safety.  In these cases, EH&S will contact regulators on behalf of the University and assist you with your response to the incident or injury.  These specific incidents and injuries are:

Any incident or injury involving pressure equipment
Any incident or injury involving flood, fire or explosion 
Any incident or injury involving an elevator
Any incident or injury resulting in hospitalization
Any incident or injury related to the collapse of a crane or derrick
Any incident or injury related to the collapse of structure necessary for the structural integrity of a building
To report these incidents, contact 780-492-3710.

 

Near Misses and Other Health Related Concerns:

Potential Accidents or Incidents (Close calls):

There can be situations that if left unchecked, could result in serious incidents or injuries. Such situations should be reported to the Lab Supervisor or Department Safety Officer immediately, who will then in turn contact the appropriate resources to have the situation resolved immediately. If the Lab Supervisor or Safety Officer are not available, contact the Department Assistant Chair (Admin) or the Chair. Such situations may be written up using the standard reporting procedure to ensure that the situation has been resolved and new protocols are followed.

 

 Occupational Health Concerns:

Whenever a person is concerned about a lab procedure or has a health concern regarding the job they perform, they can contact the Department Safety Officer, Assistant Chair (Admin), or Office of Environmental Health & Safety. It is best to work towards a solution instead of filing a NASA complaint

 

Time Restrictions when filing an Accident Report:

There are time restrictions in filing accident and injury reports. The Department must file an injury report to the Office of Environmental Health & Safety within 48 hours of an accident.

The University must file an accident report with the Workman’s Compensation Board within 72 hours after an injury has occurred, or risk severe fines. ($25,000.00 for non-reporting)

Therefore, whenever there has been a workplace incident/injury reported to any Faculty Advisor, Staff Member or Teaching Assistant, they must immediately advise the Assistant Chair (Admin) and provide written information of the event.

 

Workers Compensation Board Role at the U of A:

The WCB-Alberta is a mutual insurance organization that is funded by employers in the province. Its role is to provide workplace liability and disability insurance for its members. All University of Alberta Employees are covered under the WCB if they are injured while performing their duties, but in addition, students are also covered if they are injured while engaged in activities related to their educational program (i.e. in a class or a laboratory or while on a field trip). If a university employee is injured at work, the WCB may reimburse the University for the Employees Wages while recovering. For students injured while engaged in some aspect of their program, the WCB may reimburse them for wages lost because they could not continue a part-time job or for an ambulance or prescription drugs (this coverage for students is paid for by the Alberta Department of Higher Education, not the University of Alberta).

The Workers’ Compensation Board requires notification of all worker accidents in which:

  • a worker requires medical attention, or
  • a worker cannot continue working after the injury

WCB report forms (see attached), are required from both the worker and the employer. Students or workers should submit their completed form to the Assistant Chair (Admin), who will complete the employer form and send both over to Human Resource Services within 72 hours. Also, if the injured person seeks medical attention, inform the doctor that the accident occurred at work so that a medical WCB report can be submitted within 48-72 hours.

Employee Form

Employer Form

 

High Performance Fume Hoods in the CCIS Building

­­The new types of fumehoods in the CCIS building require that all personnel working with these fume hoods are given training on how to use these hoods properly.  Therefore the Office on Environmental Health & Safety at the U of A has created an E-class on the high efficiency hoods.  All University personnel who use the fume hoods in CCIS are required to take the E-Class training before using the­ hoods. To register to take the courses go to the EH&S Home page at:http://www.ehs.ualberta.ca/Training/ChemicalSafetyTraining.aspx  and click on registration on the CCIS Fumehoods.  Fill out the enrollment form and follow the links.  Take the short course and you will know and understand the features of the high efficiency hoods.

 

 

Glove Compatibility

Choosing the Right Gloves for the Job at Hand

It is always important to work safely in the lab. You must wear the correct protective equipment to keep yourself safe while working with chemicals.

Gloves deserve special mention because of the ­variety of gloves available. You need to ensure that you have chosen the safest glove with the highest protection factor for the chemicals you will be working with. There are many different types of gloves available and you must know which glove is the best one for the chemical/s you will be working with.

You can find this information on many MSDS sheets under “protective equipment”.  However, if the MSDS sheet does not mention which glove is best for the job, check the web-links listed below to find the  glove that is most resistant for the chemical/s you will be handling. Another choice would be to phone the manufacturer of the chemical and find out what they recommend while working with their product. Their contact number will be on the MSDS sheet.

Here is a list of points regarding proper glove use:

  • Gloves are tested under controlled laboratory conditions with one chemical at a specific temperature
  • All gloves will become permeable and degrade over time
  • Chemical resistance varies depending upon the glove material and thickness
  • Chemicals can permeate the glove depending upon the chemical’s concentration, temperature and mixtures with other chemicals
  • Before starting your work, always check your gloves for cracks, tears, deterioration or discoloration.  Continue to inspect the gloves throughout the experiment.
  • Always wash your hands and the gloves when you remove them.  Do not reuse disposable gloves.
  • Always remove gloves before you leave the lab.  Never wear your gloves outside of the lab.

The following link to EDU-Labs gives good information regarding glove safety and they list over a dozen manuafacturers of gloves at the bottom of their page:

http://www.ehs.ufl.edu/Lab/CHP/gloves.htm

Cole Palmer’s site makes checking glove compatibilities easy.  Just select the chemical and press the button below and a chart of gloves and their chemical compatibility will appear:

Cole Palmer’s glove compatibility site

 The Cole Palmer’s site gives you the name of the manufacturer and type of glove on their chart.  Then click on the most compatible glove and the site will take you directly to the manufacturer’s site.They provide all the information you need to order the selected glove. 

 Below are more web-links to glove manufacturers.

Forms Cabinet

Injury Forms:

All incident and injury forms can be found on the Office of Environmental Health and Safety site.­  ­Always report an incident or injury to the Acting Chair (Admin) or to the Department Safety Officer.

Minor Injuries: Forms­

Minor injuries are those injuries that do not involve medical attention. If someone is uses any item from a Lab or Field First Aid Kit, that person must report what they are using from the kit on the First Aid Report Sheets. By recording the incident you have a record of the injury should the incident become more severe that first realized; then there is a permanent record. The First Aid Report Sheet  must be filled out and given to the Assistant Chair (Admin). These records must be kept for three years.

First Aid Form

Serious Incidents and Injuries:

There are many EAS Personnel who have First Aid Training. (All EAS personnel involved with any EAS Field School are required to have current CPR and First Aid Training.)

When a serious injury has occurred it is important to know where the nearest First Aid Kit is located and who to call. If an ambulance is required, call 911 immediately. If you are working in the field, call the local ambulance or contact the STARS Emergency Link Centre @ 1-888-888-4567 or #4567 on cellular. Once the situation has been controlled and dealt with, the Incident & Investigation Reports need to be filled out and sent to the appropriate personnel on campus.  If the injured person needs to seek medical attention, then WCB forms have to be filled out and filed within 72 hours.

Faculty/Department Incident & Investigation Report

Workers Compensation form – Employer’s Form

Worker’s Compensation form – Worker’s Report

Both the injured worker and the employer have forms to fill out and submit to the U of A’s Human Resource Department.  Injuries requiring a WCB form need to be reported to your department,  EH&S and  Human Resources.

When reporting an incident or injury, you must take steps to protect people’s privacy. The information surrounding an incident can be given only to those individuals who are directly involved with ensuring an injured worker’s safety and those persons involved in ensuring that a repeat occurrence does not occur.

 

Chemical Spills Form

The following form can be used to report a chemicals spill in the lab. There are three objectives to the form:

  • Were there any lab personnel injured, if so did they seek first aid or medical treatment for the injury?
  • How did the spill occur and what steps are necessary to avoid a repeat occurrence?
  • Follow up – has a new protocol been established to prevent a repeat accident and were all safety supplies replenished after the event?

Spill or Environmental Release

 

Laboratory Close Out Forms:

The following form must be filled out whenever a Faculty Member:

  • Retires and vacates the lab
  • Moves to another lab
  • Renovations are being done in an existing lab

The purpose of the form is for the safety of new occupants to a lab, where the old chemicals and dangerous goods have been removed prior to their occupying of the space. When renovations occur, the Physical Plant workers must not be endangered by existing chemicals or equipment in the lab.

Lab Closeout Guidelines

 

Clearance to Work in Hazardous Areas Forms:

When minor renovations are to be done in an existing lab, the following form must be filled out. This form is intended to keep the renovator safe from the dangerous goods stored or dangerous equipment in the lab.

Clearance to Work Form

 

Checklist for Workstation Form:

This checklist is intended to provide you with basic information so that you can check the current set up of your furniture and equipment. It may help to reduce your risk of repetitive strain injury from working at a desk. If you require an assessment, contact your supervisor who will contact the Occupational Health Nurse for an assessment.

Ergonomic Assessment form

 

Respirator Health Questionnaire:

Before you begin to wear any type of respirator, you need to be sure that you do not have health conditions that would cause you to have serious problems donning a mask.  The appropriate  type of mask to use will depends upon the hazards of the material/s you are working with.  You need to fill out a questionnaire form and sent it to the Occupational Health Nurse;  then a Respirator Fitting Test can be done.

Respirator Health Screening Form

 

Chemical Disposal

Chemicals:

The Office of Environmental Health & Safety operates a Chemical Waste Disposal Program where all University chemical waste is picked up and sent out for proper disposal. (There are some chemicals that they will not take because of their extreme hazards.  They will call a professional chemical disposal agency to remove these types of chemicals.

The Department of Earth & Atmospheric Science has set up their disposal procedures as directed by the Office of Environmental Health & Safety such that all chemical wastes are bagged or bottled, and labeled with the hazardous product contained therein. When an EAS lab has Technicians, the Technician will fill out the appropriate Chematix* form and then submit the chemical waste list to the Safety Officer. When a lab does not have a technician, the Supervisor of that lab must make sure that the bags or bottles have the full name of the chemical waste listed and give the waste to the Safety Officer. The Safety Officer will then fill out the Chematix* forms.

All of the waste is then sent out through the Office of Environmental Health & Safety. (Note: You cannot leave chemical waste in the hallways for someone to pick it up. It is stored in B-09 ESB until EH&S personnel have time to pick it up.)

The rules for safe chemical disposal are:

  • NO LIQUID CHEMICAL WASTES ARE TO BE POURED DOWN THE DRAINS.  THERE ARE HEAVY FINES FOR DOING SO.
  • NO SOLID WASTES ARE TO BE THROWN INTO THE REGULAR GARBAGE.

Liquid and solid waste chemicals are labeled and sent out via the Office of Environmental Health & Safety Waste Disposal program. All waste should be bottled in separate containers, do not mix different chemicals in the same bottle. Explosions have occurred from this practice. Keep all liquid chemical waste separated. Be sure to place waste in the correct containers, e.g. Hydrofluoric Acid waste, (HF), cannot be stored in glass bottles. Do not use metal containers to store corrosive wastes – they may corrode the container and then become a chemical spill hazard.

We CANNOT dispose of UNLABELED chemicals – you MUST label your waste.

If there is a problem with the identification of the waste – contact the Safety Officer for advice. Failure to comply with the proper disposal of chemicals may result in an incident report. If you pour chemicals down the drains or dispose of chemical waste in the regular garbage you can be fined.

Waste Disposal for Broken Glass & Sharps:

Broken Glass:

BROKEN GLASS IS TO BE DISPOSED OF USING THE “GLASS ONLY” PAILS.  BROKEN GLASS CANNOT BE PLACED INTO REGULAR GARBAGE PAILS.  The broken glassware must be “clean” glassware so that chemical fumes are not being emitted throughout the lab/s. 

(And vice-verse, no garbage goes into the “Broken Glass Only” pails; inevitably someone gets cut picking out the garbage!) Be sure to only place rinsed glassware in the broken glass pail; contaminated glassware cannot be placed into the Broken Glass Pails. When this pail gets full – place a notice on it to let the custodians know that you would like it to be emptied. You can also place the clean broken glass into one of the glass only bins by the delivery exit on the south side of the ESB.  Or you can take the broken glass pail to the dumpster behind the building and dump it yourself.

Sharps:

Sharps are:

  • Razor
  • Blades
  • Scalpels
  • Hypodermic needles
  • syringes

These items must be placed in an appropriate “Sharps container” and labeled as SHARPS.  They cannot be placed in any other vessel except a “sharps container” or they will not take your sharps away for incineration.  This includes syringes.

DO NOT place SHARPS into regular garbage or into the “GLASS ONLY” pail.  They go out separately via a Sharps Container.

Recyclable Materials:

All batteries are sent out with EH&S Chemical waste.  The batteries are then sent out to be recycled.

Gas, oil, paint and solvents are also sent out for disposal via EH&S.

*Chematix is a Chemical Waste Database to properly label and quantify the amount and type of chemical waste sent out. The U of A transports this waste on public roads and must meet the Transportation of Dangerous Goods Regulations as to what they are transporting and how much they are transporting on public roadways.

 

Campus Control Centre

Campus Control Centre is always open.  The Control Centre monitors all buildings on campus and can assist you if you have a building  emergency.  Their phone number is 780-492-5555.  You can contact them directly after hours if there is a building issue, e.g. broken water pipe.

Campus Control Cente­r link:  Campus Control Center

Police / Fire / Ambulance

Fire/Police/Ambulance: 911 All Campuses

North Campus and South Campus

  • Campus Security Services: 780 492-5050
  • Building Emergency (flood, outage, etc.): 780 492-5555
  • Edmonton Police Service:780 423-4567

Augustana Campus

  • Maintenance: 780 679-1523
  • Camrose Police Service: 780 672-4444

Campus Saint-Jean

  • Campus Security Services: 780 492-5050
  • Building Emergency (flood, outage, etc.): 780 492-5555
  • Edmonton Police Service: 780 423-4567

Enterprise Square

  • Maintenance: 1-866-254-5349
  • Edmonton Police Service: 780 423-4567