Date: Thu, 20 Oct 2011 10:09:58 -0400
Reply-To: DCHAS-L <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**MED.CORNELL.EDU>
Sender: DCHAS-L Discussion List <dchas-l**At_Symbol_Here**>
From: "Samuella B. Sigmann" <sigmannsb**At_Symbol_Here**APPSTATE.EDU>
Subject: Re: CSB Texas Tech Case Study
In-Reply-To: <1677852553957F45BA7188EE44766EB34D4B46E257**At_Symbol_Here**>
Hi All - I think that when the ACS addresses this, they need to
seriously consider rearranging the certified degree curriculum.   If we
are to create this "safety culture" we need to start teaching safety as
a subject in addition to the specific safety instructions given as part
of laboratory experimentation.  One cannot encounter every hazard in
undergraduate and graduate school, so we have to train students how to
address the subject of a new hazard when confronted with this situation.

That's what my safety course is all about.  Unfortunately it is not
required by our majors - I am still trying.  If the ACS would require a
course like mine - we could see some real progress towards producing
students with a better appreciation for chemical safety.  I noticed in
the CSB report that they used the "Swiss cheese" model of barrier
failure - I have been using this in training for years to get the point
across that the greater the hazard, the more barriers you need.

I would love to serve on a committee or focus group on this if anyone
out there is looking to form one.

On 10/19/2011 3:43 PM, Brennan, Catherine (Environment Health & Safety)
I know that the issue of safety in academic labs has been discussed at councilor meetings at the ACS national meetings and ACS recently established a Safety Culture Task Force.  See C&EN Safety blog:
Not sure if ACS knew about CSB recommendation or not prior to formation of this task force or how it will influence the outcomes.

-----Original Message-----
From: DCHAS-L Discussion List [mailto:dchas-l**At_Symbol_Here**MED.CORNELL.EDU] On Behalf Of Robin M. Izzo
Sent: Wednesday, October 19, 2011 2:58 PM
Subject: Re: [DCHAS-L] CSB Texas Tech Case Study

Honestly, I found the entire presentation disappointing.  The joint presentation by the CSB and Texas Tech at the CSHEMA conference in July was excellent and provided some excellent points to ponder that were absent from this webinar.

The issues regarding policies, structure, training, etc all needing to work together to create a positive safety culture were very well stated.  As far as reporting structures, I hope that the CSB (or rather, the ACS, as it seems) doesn't go out and suggest that every college and university change their structure.  The issue is not necessarily who EHS reports to, it's about the relationship that EHS has with the research side of the house.

For example, at Princeton, the reporting structure is nearly exactly the same as Texas Tech's structure at the time of their incident.  However, the Dean for Research, the Dean of the Faculty, the Provost and even the president of the University are partners in lab safety.  We have an escalation process in place that goes from the laboratory worker to the PI to the department chair to the Dean for Research.  The Dean for Research is also the chair of the University Research Board, which grants PI status, among other things.  As needed, we will bring in the Dean of Faculty (for faculty performance issues), the Dean of the Graduate School (for graduate student issues), etc.

If we changed our structure to what was proposed, then what about our non-laboratory issues?  What about general safety, ergonomics, fire safety, etc?  How does that fit in?

I also felt that they were too focused on regulation.  What does it matter that the OSHA lab standard defines "particularly hazardous substances" based only on toxicity?  It still says we have to have a strong safety program and it refers to Prudent Practices.  Last I checked, Prudent Practices had plenty of emphasis on physical hazards.

As for training, the general laboratory safety training that our EHS provides touches on explosives, reactive materials, and other unusual hazards, but does not get into specifics.   Specifics come from other resources and procedures, as well as in-lab training.

Has CSB already had discussions with ACS about the charge they have given?  If so, who or what group has been asked to do this?

Robin M. Izzo, M.S.
Associate Director, EHS
Princeton University
609-258-6259 (office)

How many legs does a dog have if you call the tail a leg?  Four.  Calling it a tail a leg doesn't make it a leg.
~ Abraham Lincoln

-----Original Message-----
From: DCHAS-L Discussion List [mailto:dchas-l**At_Symbol_Here**MED.CORNELL.EDU] On Behalf Of Ernest Lippert
Sent: Wednesday, October 19, 2011 2:04 PM
Subject: Re: [DCHAS-L] CSB Texas Tech Case Study

To All,
What is obviously lacking, in addition to effective communication, is
common sense. A point I make in safety training is: "Careful
consideration must be given to every operation where the risk of
injury may occur. Always, education, information, and common sense
should dictate the consequentially proper procedures", (paraphrased
from Jay A. Young).
Ernest Lippert

On Wed, Oct 19, 2011 at 1:35 PM, Erik A. Talley  wrote:
Your Friend, Erik Talley, has recommended the following page on CSB Startup NET

Title: CSB Texas Tech Case Study

NOTE: If your e-mail account doesn't automatically turn the URL above into a link, you can copy and paste it into your browser.

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