Department of Plant and Soil Sciences

Laboratory Safety Committee

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Winter 2010 January 11, 2011



Jerry Hendricks - Chair
Krista Murray - EHS Representative
Donna Kelsch - Secretary
Tecle Weldekidan
Nancy Gregory

Missing : Bruce Vasilas, Kun Huang

The meeting was called to order at 1:00 pm.

Old Business

Krista Murray brought current status document s to the meeting regarding the disposition of outstanding violations in the PLSC labs. There were eight labs with outstanding violations. These should be cleared and reported to EHS as soon as possible.

In order to make sure that these reports are completed, each was assigned to a committee member for resolution as follows:

  • Nancy Gregory - 302, 101, 104, and 205 Worrilow (205 cleared by Nancy Gregory at the meeting and given to Krista Murray)
  • Tecle Weldekidan - 108, 110, and 125 Worrilow
  • Gerry Hendricks - 112 Worrilow
  • Bruce Vasilas - 208 Worrilow (assigned by Jerry Hendricks in absentia)
  • Kun Huang - 214 and 215 Worrilow
  • Tecle Weldekidan - 125 Worrilow

Responsible lab members will update their assigned labs in the EHS system. If lab personnel do not want to do the updates in the system, Jerry Hendricks will complete it for them.  

Krista Murray explained that each violation carries a number value equal to the severity of the infringement for reporting purposes. She also noted that the clearing of these violations should be done as soon as possible.

Krista Murray also announced that EHS will be conducting lab inspections in August. These are in addition to those conducted by department personnel in the spring.

New Business

Jerry Hendricks reported that there was one safety incident this past quarter. It involved a student who needed stitches after cutting himself. This incident took place at Brookhaven National Laboratory. The proper forms were immediately completed and submitted. Krista Murray recommended the re-training of students on safety procedures in the lab.

Jerry Hendricks mentioned that the greenhouse had a problem with an emergency light that was beeping for several days. Rodney Dempsey reported the problem, but Mr. Hendricks was unsure if the problem was ever resolved. Krista Murray noted that EHS could speak with facilities if the problem is not resolved.

Nancy Gregory mentioned that most of the safety showers have been redone on the second floor of Worrilow Hall. Krista Murray noted that these new showers can be turned on and off, unlike the old showers that had to be turned off at the main.

Jerry Hendricks brought up the issue of waste training. He pointed out that the waste stream can be confusing. This is where training helps. Krista Murray said all lab personnel must have chemical waste training. She said that a live training could be scheduled with Jane Frank of EHS. She also mentioned that EHS could extend a “Welcome Wagon” to the Jaisi lab and asked that they be reminded that they will need to complete safety training.

Jerry Hendricks also mentioned the need to schedule fire extinguisher training and a fire drill. These will probably be done in the spring.


Krista Murray told the committee that Kevin Eichinger will be leaving EHS and the university soon. There is a tentative going-away party scheduled for January 27. EHS is working on dividing his duties among existing staff. Also, Jennifer Pyle has been appointed storm water management contact. EHS will be working to fill the asbestos and lead management positions. Mike Wayock is a new waste tech at EHS.

Jerry Hendricks announced that he is stepping down as the chair of the Plant and Soil Sciences safety committee and chemical hygiene officer. Nicole Donofrio will take over, with the assistance of Deb Jaisi.

A picture was taken of the safety committee to be posted on the Web site.

The next meetings will take place on the second Wednesday s of March and June. Then a new committee will convene.

The meeting closed at 1:30 p.m.

Respectfully submitted

Donna Kelsch