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Safety Tips from I-Safety

Spotlight Tip of the Week

Whenever you are cleaning out your office, lab or other work space, keep in mind that corridors must remain open to allow for rapid evacuation to safety in case of emergencies. Items removed from your area cannot be stored in the corridors as it reduces the egress widths and can become an impediment to safe evacuation. If you no longer need these items, they should be disposed of through recycling, surplus or put into the general waste stream if appropriate. If you cannot fit the larger items that you want to keep in other rooms and want to temporarily store them in a hallway, please submit a completed Corridor Use Exemption form to EHS at Chemicals, flammable liquids, readily combustible and unstable items should never be stored in hallways.

Recycle, reuse or surplus items that you can. The Recycling, Surplus and Solid Waste (RSSW) group in Facilities can assist in rehoming many of your things. Please visit the RSSW Policies and Guidelines website for more information on how to surplus university property.

For additional information on corridor use relating to egress and evacuations, please visit the EHS Fire Safety website.

It seems everywhere you turn on campus, there’s another construction zone. With traffic revisions due to road closures, the impacts of this work can be felt far from the actual work zone. The university is very good at posting construction areas, so pay attention to email alerts and signage at the doors of buildings or on sandwich boards so you know when and where the construction is going to take place.

As a pedestrian, bicyclist or skateboarder it is important, now more than ever, to pay attention to what is going on around you. Here are some basic tips to follow:

  • Always use walkways or designated alternate routes
  • Do not enter an area that has signs, caution tape, cones or fencing
  • Do not move barriers that are "in your way"; this puts you, construction workers and others that may follow at unnecessary risk of injury
  • Comply with posted restrictions both inside buildings and around construction sites
  • If you must use the street to bypass construction areas, face oncoming traffic so you can make eye contact with drivers
  • Wear bright colored clothing to increase visibility to those around you
  • Carry a flashlight/use lights during the hours of darkness
  • Pay attention to large trucks and mobile equipment; you will see them before they see you
  • Make eye contact with drivers of the trucks and mobile equipment operators before proceeding

Construction work is dangerous, and workers need to be able to focus on their own safety. Following their directions will help them, and you, be safe during these activities. Note: Please report stealing of safety cones to campus security or EHS. The unauthorized relocation of these cones presents a real danger to our personnel and students.

You can follow upcoming and ongoing construction projects by checking the Facilities website.

Culture of Questioning

Questioning certain practices with safety in mind is an essential attitude to keep you and the rest of the Vandal family safe. Questioning challenges the complacency that grows in familiar situations and drives change. Questioning safety practices, or perhaps a lack thereof, is vital to developing a culture of safety at the University of Idaho. The goal is for everyone to return home at the end of every day just as healthy as when they arrived on campus.

Safety issues are often recognized but go unreported because a person doesn't know whom to contact or assumes that someone else is already taking care of it. At U of I, we want everyone to challenge these assumptions, question the situation and report the issues. The Report a Safety Concern form was created just for this purpose. It allows for anonymous reporting if you choose, as well as the option to upload an image of the safety problem when appropriate. It is available for anyone to use, and concerns will be directed to the proper campus unit to correct the problem.

Students and employees are the eyes and ears of the community, and your help is essential. Get involved in the safety training opportunities available to you, ask questions if you have a concern about a procedure, take part in safety inspections and report issues right away - issues cannot be corrected if no one knows about them. Timely questioning and reporting can prevent accidents and near misses. If an accident or near miss does occur, report this as well; investigating the reason will help avoid another injury.

As a supervisor, you have additional influence - lead by example and ensure safety is a core value in your team's activities. You are encouraged to do workplace inspections, ensure your employees are current on their safety training, talk regularly with your employees and discuss accident investigation reports with them and the U of I EHS staff. EHS has many resources available for you and the EHS staff can assist all supervisors in their safety efforts.

Our Vandal culture is how we think and act in all our activities. Avoiding complacency and continuously challenging existing conditions that might pose a safety risk allows us as a community to identify discrepancies and take appropriate actions before an accident or near miss occurs. Put safety first and we can achieve the safest possible working and learning environment for our Vandal family.

Contact Us

Mailing Address:
875 Perimeter Dr
MS 2030 
Moscow, ID

Phone: 208-885-6524

Fax: 208-885-5969