Health and Safety

    • All new users of the autoclaves must be trained by Michael Arlt. Once training is complete it is added to the autoclave training record.
    • Autoclaves can be found in two areas in the basement of the Earth Sciences Centre, Room B120.
    • For assistance, see Michael Arlt in RW 136.
    How do we autoclave garbage?
      There are three autoclaves in the basement, each numbered individually. Autoclave#1 has been designated for autoclaving garbage. All other autoclaves in the department are NOT to be used for sterilizing garbage.

      For all Bio Safety Level I labs in the building, when autoclaving garbage, use only clear autoclave bags with NO biohazard symbol on the bad to sterilize all biological material (i.e. petri plates, cultures, etc.).

      • Do not OVERFILL the bag. Leave enough room to close the bag in a safe manner.
      • Do not SEAL the bag tightly. Leave an opening to allow steam formed inside the bag to escape.
      • Place the autoclave bag in a tub, and only then start autoclaving. HOT MEDIA INSIDE THE AUTOCLAVE WILL PLUG-UP THE DRAIN.
      • The material coming out of the autoclave is VERY HOT. Use oven gloves to protect your hands.
      • Once the garbage has been autoclaved, let the material cool for several hours and then place the bag in a regular large garbage can.
      For all Bio Safety Level II labs, garbage is autoclaved in bags printed with a biohazard symbol. After autoclaving, these bags are then brought back to the individual research labs, and placed in containers provided by the Environmental Protection Services at UofT. The containers are then picked up when the Environmental Protection Services is contacted by the lab.

    How to autoclave and dispose of contaminated sharp materials?
      Autoclave all sharp items such as contaminated broken glassware, pipettes, or razor blades in SEPARATE AUTOCLAVE BAGS. After autoclaving, dispose of the bags containing the sharps into one of the Lab Glass and Plastic Totes supplied by Recycling in your lab and the containers with blades and needles contact Environmental Protection Services (416-946-3473) for proper disposal.
Building Safety

    The following is a set of guidelines to be followed to ensure a safe and
    secure environment: general

    1. Ensure that all exterior doors are locked when you enter and leave the building after hours. Building hours are as follows: Monday to Thursday: 7:30am to 8:00pm; Friday: 7:30am to 6:00pm
    2. Do not leave a door propped open. If you find one, close it.
    3. Report all unlocked doors of faulting locking mechanism to the UofT Campus Police after hours. You can reach them at 416-978-2323.
    4. Do not let anyone you do not recognize as working in EEB into the building with you after hours.
    5. Report any suspicious looking/acting individuals roaming the building to the EEB administrative office, or call UofT Campus Police directly.
    6. Whenever possible, lock the door to your lab, group room, or office when you leave. If your door is equipped with a dead bolt, engage it using the door key when you leave. 
    7. Do not leave valuables, including laptops, lying around on your desk or lab bench. Keep them out of sight. Lock them away before you leave.
    8. Keep a record of serial numbers for computers and other valuable electronic equipment.
    9. Make sure your data is backed up elsewhere.
    10. Immediately report ALL lost or stolen door keys to EEB reception by email, in person, or by calling 416-978-8514.
    11. Do not, under any circumstance, lend your door keys to anyone, even if for a short period of time.
Community Safety
DOs and DON'Ts of Health and Safety
    DO return lost keys to room 3055.
    DON'T let others borrow your keys.

    DO lock your valuables in a desk or locker.
    DON'T leave your personal items unattended.

    DO fill out an accident report immediately after accidents/incidents occur.
    DON'T work with dangerous or hazardous materials when alone.

    DO call 416-978-3000 to report fume hood vent alerts, flooding, broken locks, or unusual smells.
    DON'T work in a dangerous or unsafe work environment.

    DO call 416-978-7000 to report major chemical spills or gas cylinder breaks.
    DON'T try to tame a fire or clean up a chemical spill on your own.

    DO call 416-978-2323 to report unlocked exterior building doors after hours or on weekends, and to report any other matters after regular building hours.
    DON'T let strangers into the building with you after hours.

    DO wear proper lab gear when working in the lab.
    DON'T wear gloves outside of the lab, or transport chemicals in the passenger elevators.

Emergency Response Contact Information
    Emergency Response Department
     Position  Contact  Telephone
    Campus Police,   Non-Emergency
    Campus Police, Emergency
    Chemical Waste Management
    Chemical Technician
    Mario Reyes
    Chemical Waste Management
    Chemical & Biological Hazardous Material Technician -OR- Biosafety Officer
    Aman Khan or Cynthia Thomas
    Earth Sciences Building
    Engineer Ken or Kent
    416-978-5467 or 416-978-3590
    Environmental Air Compliance
      Matthew White
    Environmental Health & Safety
    Environmental Protection Manager
    Rob Provost
    HAZMAT (Hazardous Materials)
    Radiation Services
    Hazardous Materials Technician Luis Ponte or Peter Smith
First Aid Stations
    There are three first aid stations in the EEB wing of the Earth Sciences Building. They are:

    Second floor lounge, room ES2054
    Trained First Aid Personnel: Tanja Vasic
    Phone: 416-978-3331

    Third floor administrative office, room ES3055
    Trained First Aid Personnel: Liz Rentzelos
    Phone: 416-946-3340

    Fourth floor lounge, room ES4043
    Trained First Aid Personnel: Cathy Guo
    Phone: 416-978-0563

Health and Safety Manual
Health and Safety Committee
Lab Safety
    Click here to be redirected to the detailed Lab Safety page.
Legislation and Responsibility
Material Safety Data Sheets
Personal Safety and Property
    When working alone, on weekends, evenings or nights, keep your office or lab door closed and locked. It is a good idea to let someone know that you intend to work late, alone. You should also let UofT Campus Police know what building and room you plan to work in.

    The Work Alone Program is available to all members of the community who work on campus during the quiet hours of the evening, weekends, and statutory holidays. University Campus Police will visit or telephone you during the period you plan on working for, to make sure you are safe. They will also let you know of any emergencies in your area. Register by calling 416-978-2323. Hours of operation are Monday to Friday: 10:00pm to 7:00am; 24 hours during weekends and statutory holidays.

    TravelSafer offers a safe and reliable alternative to walking alone on campus at night, from 7:30pm to 1:30am. TravelSafer provides escorts to walk you from one campus building to another, or to the nearest TTC stop or subway. You can contact TravelSafer by calling 416-978-SAFE (416-978-7233). If no one is available at this number, call UofT Campus Police at 416-978-2323.

    Emergency - Police/Fire/Medical emergency
    Call 9-1-1 from an internal telephone line for immediate police, fire or medical response to preserve life or property. Report urgent matters (suspicious persons/trespassers) to UofT Campus Police by calling 416-978-2222. To contact UofT Campus Police on any non-urgent matter, call 416-978-2323 or visit their website.

    Emergency Telephones are located throughout campus to keep you safe. A blue flashing light indicates the location of an emergency telephone. When the button is pressed, it dials directly into the UofT Campus Police dispatcher and the caller's location is displayed to the operator. There are several emergency telephone locations on campus. The nearest location to the Earth Sciences Building is opposite the Forestry doors at Willcocks Street in the courtyard.

    Fire Evacuation
    In the event of a fire, or when the alarm sounds, evacuate the building. Walk quickly to the nearest exit and alert others to do the same. If necessary, assist disabled persons in exiting the building. NEVER use the elevators. Be familiar with the stairwells nearest to your work location.

    There are five (5) stairwells in the Earth Sciences Building. They are:

    1. North Huron Block stairwell at 25 Willcocks Street (Huron/Willcocks).
    2. North stairwell at 33 Willcocks Street (near the Faculty Club).
    3. South stairwell at 22 Russell Avenue (at the Department of Earth Sciences).
    4. Central stairwell at Bancroft Street (between EEB and Earth Sciences).
    5. Southwest stairwell at Bancroft Street on the Forestry side (near the GSU pub).

    DO NOT return to an evacuated building unless directed to do so by the UofT Campus Police or Department staff.

    Personal Property is not covered by UofT insurance. The University is not responsible for any damage or loss to your personal items.

    Personal Information is for EEB employees, students and teaching assistants is available on our website. If you would prefer to limit the information available to others, please contact EEB reception.

Reporting Accidents and Incidents
    These procedures outline the reporting requirements for accidents, incidents, and occupational illnesses which result in, or have the potential to result in, personal injury or property damage.

    Reportable incidents are those which:

    • result in personal injury or lost time from work (including those requiring first aid, and occupational illness);
    • have the potential to result in personal injury or property damage even though no injury or damage actually occurred;
    • occur to any person on university premises;
    • occur to a university employee during the course of his/her work either on or off university premises;
    • occur to a student during the course of his/her classroom, laboratory or field work;
    • occur to a student during the course of a work placement (either paid or unpaid) which forms part of their university curriculum.
    • the above applies to incidents that occur outside of Ontario. If you will be working outside of Ontario for more than 6 months, you must contact Anne Chreptak at 416.978.8804 in Health & Well-being to extend your WSIB coverage.

    The first step in reporting any and all accidents and incidents is to contact:

    Diane Yeager
    Chief Administrative Officer
    Room: ES3055F
    Phone: 416-978-6515

    If Diane is unavailable, you can also direct issues to Jesse at EEB reception by calling 416-978-8514, or visiting ES3055.

    Reporting of Accidents/Incidents Involving Employees
      The term "employee" refers to all full-time, part-time, sessional/seasonal employees, casual employees and graduate teaching assistants when they are performing their duties as teaching assistants.

      On the day of the incident, the employer is responsible for providing and paying for immediate transportation to a hospital, health professional office/clinic or the worker's home (if necessary) and for paying for full wages and benefits for the day or shift on which the injury occured.

      Within 24 hours, the supervisor must complete and submit the "Online Workplace Accident/Incident Report for Employees". Please ensure you have all of the required information available - the form has a time limit of 20 minutes. Where supervisors are unable to fully complete the form within 24 hours, the form, should still be sent, with the missing information to follow once obtained. Use “not available” for any information that is missing.

      The completed form should be faxed to 416-971-3052 or hand delivered to:

      Anne Chreptak
      WSIB Administrator
      Health and Well Being Programs and Services
      263 McCaul Street, 2nd Floor

      The WSIB Administrator in Health and Well Being is responsible for all liaison with the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board and for the ongoing follow-up of claims. For assistance or information with respect to any claim, contact Anne Chreptak at 416-978-8804.

      Please note: The Workplace Safety and Insurance Board levies a fine of $250 for late reporting of lost time or a health care claim. Where this late reporting is a result of your failure, or your supervisor's failure to report the accident to the WSIB Administrator, Health and Well Being, you or your supervisor will be responsible for paying the fine. 

    Reporting of Accidents/Incidents Involving Students
      Students and visitors include all non-employees present or working in University workplaces. These include undergraduate students, graduate students (except when performing TA duties, in which case they are considered employees), visitors and members of the general public.

      All non-employees involved in an incident/accident must report the event to a University of Toronto contact. Within 24 hours, the University of Toronto contact must complete and submit the Online Accident/Incident Report for Students, Contractors, and Visitors. Please ensure you have all the required information available - there is a time limit of 20 minutes set on the online form.

    Reporting of Critical Injuries
      A critical injury is one of a serious nature, which either places life in jeopardy, produces unconsciousness, results in substantial loss of blood, involves the fracture of a limb, involves the amputation of a limb, consists of major burns to the body of causes the loss of sight in a eye. Besides reporting to the University of Toronto Campus Police at 416-978-2222 and the University Safety Personnel, the Ministry of Labour must also be notified at 416-235-5330.

      In addition to the above legal reporting requirements, the University requires the reporting of all accidents using the appropriate forms for any person, whether or not a personal injury occurs.

      For more information regarding the reporting of accidents/incidents, visit the Office of Environmental Health and Safety Accident Reporting webpage.

    All Teaching Assistants (TAs), technicians, and faculty must have prevention
    WHMIS training prior to working in a laboratory, and must re-take WHMIS training every three years. All chemicals used in the laboratory must be accompanied by Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS). These sheets should be kept in a place that is accessible to everyone in the lab.

    Autoclave Training
      All new autoclave users must be trained prior to using the autoclaves. Once training is complete it is added to the autoclave training record. To register for autoclave training, contact Michael Arlt. For more information on autoclaves and autoclaving, click here.

    Biosafety Training
      All persons working with microorganisms are required to take Bio Safety Training. Training is offered by the Office of Environmental Health and Safety. Visit their webpage for more information and for the next available training date.
    EEB Safety Day
      As legislated by the Occupational Health and Safety Act of Ontario, WHMIS safety training is compulsory for ALL new workers. This applies to all new graduate students, post docs, technical staff, administrative staff, student help, and research project course students working in the lab. It does NOT apply to students taking regular undergraduate lab courses in teaching labs. It is the responsibility of the supervisor/PI to ensure that all workers under them are trained. Untrained personnel are legally unable work in the lab.

      Due to this legislation, EEB offers Safety Day Training annually (in the Fall), which includes WHMIS training, for all occupants of the Earth Sciences Centre (ESC).

      ATTENDANCE IS COMPULSORY and is recorded. Registration information will be emailed closer to the date of the training, but even if you neglect to register in advance, it is encouraged that you attend.

Travel Safety
    Traveling Out-of-Province?
    In the Field poster Students who have to travel outside the province or country to do field research, attend a conference, or to participate in any other university-related activity, must follow the requirements for Reasonable Care.

    To assess your risk and the precaution to be undertaken regarding Health Insurance Coverage, consult the application guidelines and Office of Environmental Health and Safety's Safety in Field Research Policy.

    There is also a safety abroad website, and an advisor who can provide information on any travel advisories that may be in effect at the time of your departure.

Waste Disposal