From: Monona Rossol <actsnyc**At_Symbol_Here**cs.com>
Subject: Re: [DCHAS-L] Laboratory Inspections
Date: Sat, 28 Jun 2014 11:02:43 -0400
Reply-To: DCHAS-L <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**MED.CORNELL.EDU>
Roger, THANK YOU for writing: "I cannot over-emphasize the importance of an adequate staff of highly qualified HSE professionals and technicians whose leader reports to the top person in the organization and engaging ALL professional and technical staff in creating a safety conscious culture that permeates the entire organization."
Teachers' profession is teaching. Researchers' profession is research. Neither has the time or the training to do professional safety audits.
Put another way, the most skilled, experienced and professional Proctologist in the world is not qualified to do brain surgery--although there are some people for which this would be the appropriate route of entry.
Monona Rossol, M.S., M.F.A., Industrial Hygienist
President: Arts, Crafts & Theater Safety, Inc.
Safety Officer: Local USA829, IATSE
181 Thompson St., #23
New York, NY 10012 212-777-0062
From: Roger McClellan <roger.o.mcclellan**At_Symbol_Here**ATT.NET>
To: DCHAS-L <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**MED.CORNELL.EDU>
Sent: Fri, Jun 27, 2014 12:28 pm
Subject: Re: [DCHAS-L] Laboratory Inspections
During my career I had the pleasure of serving as the President and CEO of two non-profit research organizations with multi-disciplinary staffing, about 40 doctoral level staff in disciplines ranging for the physical sciences and engineering to the biomedical sciences with about 100 technicians and several dozen graduate students and post-docs. One lab was a Government Owned , Contractor Operated lab with oversight from the Department of Energy, the other lab had oversight from the State of NC. In one lab the focus was on studying
the toxicity of airborne radioactive materials including fission product radionuclides and transuranic radionuclides such as Plutonium. In the other lab we studied the mechanisms of toxicity of chemicals known to have hazardous properties.
Two key operating principles that under-gired our operations were:
(1) Our Health , Safety and Environment unit was adequately funded and staffed with well-trained professionals. The HSE Unit Manager reported directly to me as the President
and CEO of the organization.
(2) Our Inspection Programs were HSE personnel (Professionals and Technicians) AND, most importantly, used a rotating team of Professionals and Technicians from across the organization to review facilities and operations for safety compliance. These teams had the full authority to "red tag" any laboratory or operation that was not operating in full compliance with all HSE guidance. In essence, shut down labs or operations until untoward conditions were corrected. This peer review approach was highly effective and routinely lauded when our facilities and operations were site-visited by external inspectors or auditors.
I cannot over-emphasize the importance of an adequate staff of highly qualified HSE professionals and technicians whose leader reports to the top person in the organization and engaging ALL professional and technical staff in creating a safety conscious culture that permeates the entire organization.
I remain dismayed that, despite some serious accidents including lives lost in recent years, some organizations still have not got the message and have inadequately staffed HSE organizations and place HSE responsibilities at
arms length from senior leadership positions in the organization. If you have concerns about the level of understanding of these matter by leaders in your organization ask them to distinguish between (a) hazard, (b) potential for exposure or harm and (c) risk. If they fail this simple quiz you know you have more work to do.
Roger O. McClellan
Roger O. McClellan, DVM, MMS, DSc(Honorary)
Diplomate - ABVT and ABT, Fellow - HPS, AAAR, SRA, AAAR and AAAS
Member - Institute of medicine
Advisor - Toxicology and Risk Analysis
According to discussions I have had with their Lab Manager of all labs on campus, the University of Delaware conducts quarterly audits of each lab using the following
rotating groups throughout the year for each audit:
lab manager with a grad student
lab manager with faculty
Experts at Finding Technical Experts=E2=84=A2
A few questions asked by our Administration:
What is the frequency of EH&S -led laboratory inspections for those of you in large academic research institutions?
# of EHS staff whose primary role is inspections?
3. Are Individual PI's or Departments required to inspect their labs? How often?
-Stefan Wawzyniecki, CIH, CHMM
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