Department of Plant and Soil Sciences

Laboratory Safety Committee

Meeting Minutes

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Robin Elliott Annoucements

Summer 97 Minutes

Spring 97 Minutes

Winter 96 Minutes

Fall 96 Minutes

Fall 97 September 26, 1997

Present: Daryl Whittington, Caroline Golt, Mark Radosevich, Sherry Kitto, Janet Shirey, Jerry Hendricks, and Robin Elliott

Members of the committee were introduced. Ms. Janet Shirey is the only new member, serving as the graduate student representative.

Old Business:

Ms. Elliott announced that the status of the fume hood owned by Mechanical Engineering being installed on the 3rd floor of Worrilow Hall is in limbo. An earlier bid for installation was incomplete and a revised bid was needed. This newer bid was considered cost prohibitive by Mr. Greg Rumsey. Ms. Elliott will attempt to persuade College of Ag administration of the "need" for the hood and that it should be considered a budget priority.

New Business:

Dr. Kitto wanted to know if the new safety manuals were an incorporation of the old safety manual with the Chemical Hygiene Plan (CHP) in order to satisfy both training requirements. Ms. Elliott said that there was some information common to both documents, but the CHP is considered a separate document and will require separate coverage in order to satisfy the training certification for the CHP.

Dr. Kitto also commented that she was in need of "sharps" pick up, but DOHS had not responded to her requests. Mr. Whittington had a similar experience in regard to excess chemical pick up. Ms. Elliott will check into these problems.

Ms. Elliott reported on the following developments:

A Biohazardous Safety Committee is being formulated for the University. She suggested that one of the new hires (Molecular Biologists) be placed on that committee. Dr. Shapiro may have more time to commit than Dr. Lemieux. Also announced was the Utility Outage notification voice-mail system that is now in place. Mr. Whittington responded that he had been contacted, but was confused as to the nature of the message. Policy regarding extension phone lines has been approved in regard to emergency response by 911. This should be signed by Dr. Roselle soon. A policy to cover shipping of hazardous and toxic materials has been approved. A training requirement for those who care for experimental animals will be in effect January 1, 1998. A new accident reporting form has been developed. This should be used with accidents involving employees so that issues involving workman compensation are covered. Mr. Whittington was given a copy of the new form. The centralized chemical storage area for the College is not being considered any longer.

Ms. Elliott asked as to the feasibility of sponsoring a teaching assistant (TA) lab safety training workshop so that TA's become aware of their responsibilities when supervising undergraduate student laboratories. Ms. Shirey commented that the TA Conference sponsored by CTE did not deal with this issue. Mr. Whittington suggested that it be done on a College level and agreed to contact Dr. Bill Ritter (College Safety Committee Chair) and Dr. Sandra Cloud (Animal & Food Science Safety Committee former Chair) to inquire of their thoughts on this matter. He will contact Ms. Elliott following their input.

Ms. Elliott also asked whether Mr. Whittington could contact Mr. Martin Stallman of Public Safety in order to request a fire drill for the College. One fire drill per year is required. Mr. Whittington said he would be willing to do so, but would coordinate this with Dr. Ritter and Dr. Cloud first.

Mr. Whittington asked on the feasibility of a DOHS sponsored excess chemical pick up monthly. It would be announced via e-mail so that College of Ag personnel would be aware of the day and time. In this way, they wouldn't have to arrange for the pick up nor feel compelled to go through their entire chemical inventory at once. Ms. Elliott expressed concern that unless DOHS was aware of what was to be picked up, they would be unprepared for what they may encounter and how to handle it safely and properly. Dr. Radosevich did not think it would alleviate the situation.

Ms. Elliott reiterated the accidental exposure of two University employees of a toxic chemical when gathering trash at Old College. The chemical(s) involved has still been undetermined though containers of bleach and ammonia were found in the dumpster. Another chemical container was found, but still intact. Its contents are still being investigated. The two workers were ill for 6 weeks and still suffer from the incident. As a result of that accident, new chemical waste labels were designed by Mr. David Levandoski of DOHS with thorough directions for chemical waste disposal printed on the back of the label. These new labels were distributed to each committee member.