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Frequently Asked Questions About EHSS at LBNL

Who is responsible for my safety at the Berkeley Laboratory?

  • Each employee is responsible for ensuring his or her own safety.

What is the ISM?

  • The ISM documents the Laboratory’s commitment to work safely and identifies safety principles to incorporate in our work activities.

What are the five core functions of the ISM?

  • Define the scope of work, what will I be doing?
  • Analyze the hazards; do I know what the hazards are?
  • Develop and implement controls, Do I have everything I need to do the job safely: training, tools time and authorization?
  • Perform work, Am I doing the job safely?
  • Provide feedback and continuous improvement, what can we do better?

The key elements of the ISM are….

  • Integration – Continuously fold safe planning and practice into all the we do
  • Safety – Planning and practicing safety is a core value
  • Management – Understand and execute our responsibilities in achieving safe practices and a safe workplace.

What are the procedures for stopping unsafe work?

  • All laboratory employees, contractors, and participating guests are responsible for stopping work activities considered to be an imminent danger.
  • Alert the affected employee(s) or contractor(s) engaged in the unsafe work that is creating an imminent-danger condition, and request that the work be stopped.
  • Call x6999 to report the incident. An EH&S staff will investigate.
  • Notify the immediate supervisor and/ or responsible division/department manager.

What are Ergonomic Risk Factors?

  • Repetition - tasks that require high repetition rates which can lead to fatigue and stress.
  • Excessive Force – excess force stamping, stapling, grasping large files folders or books.
  • Awkward Posture or Position – using the shoulder and bending the neck to hold the telephone to the ear, turning the head to the side to read, reaching over the shoulder, and bending the wrists.
  • Prolonged Activities – holding a position without movement for prolonged periods causes fatigue and requires a long recovery time, sitting or standing for hours at a time, computer operators grasping the mouse for long periods, and holding elbows away from the body while typing.
  • Localized Pressure – resting the forearms and wrists on sharp or hard edges, (e.g., work surface corners, hard arm rests).

What are the reasons an employee might want an ergonomic evaluation?

  • When an employee answers “Yes” to the Job Hazards Questionnaire acknowledging use of a computer (desktop or laptop) for an average of (4) or more hours per day.
  • When an employee moves to a new office location.
  • When new/different ergonomic equipment is installed.
  • Whenever any employee desires a preventive ergonomic evaluation
  • When an employee experiences discomfort from computer-related work activities.

Who do I contact if I have an injury or ergonomic discomfort?

  • Immediately notify your supervisor
  • Report to Health Services for medical assistance at the first sign of work-related injury or illness x6266.
  • For EMERGENCY response to a serious or life threatening injury or illness, call x7911 or 9-911.

How do I schedule an ergonomic evaluation?

  • Go to the Berkeley Lab site index, select “E”, scroll down to Ergonomic Evaluation Request enter your LDAP username and password.
  • Select request an evaluation; enter your name or employee i.d.
  • Select the reason for the evaluation, enter requested by; additional notes, (if needed) click on the “Notify Supervisor” box.
  • Click on the Request Evaluation box, this will record your request.

How often do I need to take the JHQ (Job Hazards Questionnaire)?

  • Employees must take the JHQ annually or if there is a significant job change. Contractors are required to take the JHQ if at the Laboratory 30 days or more. Your responses to the JHQ questions may trigger additional training requirements.

What do I do in the event of an earthquake?

  • DROP and COVER – Drop to the floor and seek sturdy overhead protection such as a desk, table, work bench, or room corner away from windows.
  • HOLD – Hold on to the protection you’ve chosen and be prepared to move with it until the shaking stops.
  • Evacuate immediately. Use the evacuation routes and assembly area posted in your building.
  • Do not attempt to re-enter any buildings until instructed to do so
  • For Emergency Response x7911

Who do I contact if I have a safety question or issue?

  • Contact your Supervisor
  • Contact your DSC (Division Safety Coordinator) Betsy Reyes x5071
  • Contact your ES&H liaison Ira Janowitz x6071

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Last updated: October 4, 2012