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Policies for working alone

Introduction

There are many potentially hazardous areas in the Faculty of Math and Science, primarily in the undergraduate and research labs. Work goes on without incident in these areas on a daily basis. When the university is in full operation there are usually many people in the vicinity to react and sound the alarm in the event of an incident occurring. Campus Police, Health Services staff, Athletic Injury Therapist, and other trained first-aiders are also readily accessible. However, after hours, on weekends, or in isolated places of the campus, this blanket of protection is much thinner. It is to address these circumstances that this policy has been established.

"Working Alone" can be defined as having no other individual nearby or within shouting distance. The need for on-going independent research is well recognized in the Faculty and the practice of individuals occasionally working alone is inevitable. This policy is not intended to be detrimental to the research process, but to provide guidelines for
prudent operational practices.

The Policy

Individuals who fall under the definition of "working alone" should make provision for having their welfare monitored by another individual. The level of monitoring necessary is determined by the degree of hazard (based on the probability and severity of the risk) of the work, or the work environment.

Classification System

Hazard Level I
  • Minimal hazard with respect to the activity and the environment
  • Working alone is acceptable, even after hours
  • Someone, somewhere, should be aware of the individual's whereabouts
  • Checking-in every few hours is recommended

The laboratories and terminal areas of the Computer Science department are considered to be Hazard Level 1 areas. For your own safety the department suggests that you adhere to the recommendations given above for a Hazard Level 1 area.