Laboratory Integrated Safety Plan

UNDERC endeavors to create a safe and healthy environment that fosters education and research activities for undergraduates, graduate students, faculty, staff, technicians and senior researchers. UNDERC policies and guidelines are designed to achieve this goal and will be enforced by staff at its physical facilities.  However, activities in a field setting always entail an element of risk, and UNDERC policies and guidelines can only achieve the sought after safety and health outcomes if UNDERC users follow them when in the field away from physical facilities.  UNDERC staff along with UNDERC users need to work together to achieve a safe and healthy education and research environment at physical facilities and in the field, our foremost goal.

UNDERC Safety Program

Independent from specific safety policies at UNDERC, the following actions are required:

  • UNDERC staff must undergo first aid training and maintain their safety (laboratory/fire/chemical/animal/ radiation/driving/health) training.  They are responsible for enforcing UNDERC policies/guidelines.
  • UNDERC vehicles must be safety inspected annually and must contain a first aid kit and fire extinguisher.
  • The UNDERC office must contain a first aid kit, cardiac defibrillator, and epi-pen.
  • UNDERC users must sign a safety waiver.
  • All UNDERC class participants are provided with necessary and appropriate safety training by UNDERC staff.
  • All UNDERC users immediately upon arrival at a site must register (e.g., provide vehicle description, copy of driver’s license or official photo id, etc.) with the Director or Assistant Director and provide documentation that all necessary Notre Dame (or home institution equivalent) safety training, IACUC approval, and state/tribal/federal permits for research activities have been obtained.  These documents are kept on file at UNDERC for a year.
  • Anyone using UNDERC vehicles must undergo Notre Dame driver safety training. 
  • Research projects that are not part of UNDERC classes must appoint a representative, who is responsible for ensuring that policies/guidelines are met by project personnel and are the contact for UNDERC staff.

UNDERC Local Safety Committee

The UNDERC Safety Committee will meet twice a year.  A spring meeting will occur prior to or at the start of the UNDERC-main use period to reinforce previous and establish new safety/health goals for the upcoming season.  The spring meeting is suggested to occur at Land O Lakes when Risk Management and Safety inspects the facilities, which usually occurs in late May or early June.  A late-fall meeting will occur to review UNDERC safety/health performance during the preceding main-use season and to highlight possible improvements. 

The committee’s composition will be:

  1. UNDERC Director, as chair (Gary Belovsky)
  2. UNDERC Assistant Director-East (Michael Cramer)
  3. UNDERC Assistant Director-West (David Flagel)
  4. UNDERC Technician (Patrick Larson)
  5. Faculty research user (Stuart Jones)
  6. Graduate student research user (Jake Zwart)
  7. NEON Domain 5 Site Manager (Peter Weishempel)
  8. RMS representative (Eric Kloss)
  9. LOL Property Manager, ex officio (Joseph Annoye)

Committee members, not physically present for meetings, will participate via conference call.

The UNDERC Director, UNDERC Assistant Director-East, UNDERC Assistant Director-West, and UNDERC Technician, as members of the LSC, are present at UNDERC sites to oversee implementation of the UNDERC safety/health-policies/guidelines.  Nonetheless, compliance with these policies and guidelines is ultimately the responsibility of all individuals involved in education and research activities at UNDERC sites, especially while in the field.

Hard copy of the UNDERC Laboratory Integrated Safety Plan