Physical Safety Programs
Physical Safety Programs
The University of Colorado Colorado Springs is dedicated to the safety of its students, staff, faculty and visitors. There are many physical hazards on campus that have the potential to cause an injury if they are not identified and mitigated. Below are some common focuses of physical safety on campus as well as references to more information on each topic.
If you or your department would like training on any of these topics, please review the Occupational Safety Training page and contact EHS at x7241.
All accidents, incidents, injuries and near misses should be reported to either Risk Management or EHS. The intent of a safety program is to be proactive, but it is also important to learn from each incident to ensure it does not happen again. Even if worker's compensation is not needed, you can still fill out a claim to report the injury or you can report using EHS's Accident/Near Miss Report Form.
If you are exposed or have the potential to be exposed to blood at work, please review the bloodborne pathogen page.
Working outdoors in the winter has high risk for injury and illness. It is important to know the risks and the early warning signs before working outside. Please review the toolbox talks attached below prior to performing work outside in the winter.
Confined spaces are very apparent on campus and can be very dangerous if the hazards are not mitigated before entering. A confined space is one that has limited means of entry and exit, it large enough to work inside, and is not meant for continuous occupancy. If a space meets all three of those requirements, it must also meet one of the following to be a permit-required confined space.
- Contains or has the potential to contain a hazardous atmosphere (i.e., toxic, explosive, or asphyxiating).
- Contains a material that has the potential for engulfing an entrant.
- Has an internal configuration such that an entrant could be trapped or asphyxiated by inwardly converging walls or by a floor which tapers to a smaller cross section.
- Contains any other recognized serious safety or health hazard.
If you work in a space that is defined as a permit-required confined space, you must read the UCCS Confined Space Program and be properly trained on how to safely enter these spaces.
There are many forms of transportation on campus. Although employees are certified to drive cars through their driver's license, there can be some safety concerns with driving alternative vehicles including box trucks, golf carts, utility trucks, lawn equipment, etc.
If your department needs specialized training for driving a certain piece of equipment, please reach out to EHS at x7241.
There are many electrical hazards on campus, even in office spaces. The links below are documents to help ensure you are keeping yourself safe and protecting the building from fire.
Ergonomics is the study of an employees efficiency and comfort in their working environment. Your work environment should not cause you discomfort or pain. For more information on ergonomics and how to prevent strain in the workplace, please go to the ergonomics website linked below.
If you are experiencing pain or discomfort from your work environment, reach out to Risk Management (x3525) or EHS (x7241) for an evaluation.
Fall protection is required for unprotected platform above 4 feet. This can include roof edges, work platforms, scaffolding, ladders, and other unprotected edges. Fall protection can come in many forms. Guard rails, fall restraint, fall arrest, and safety nets are all accepted practices for fall protection in the workplace. The type used will vary on the situation and task at hand.
When using personal fall protection, including fall arrest and restraint, it is crucial that all equipment be inspected prior to use. For guidance on inspection, utilize the fall protection inspection checklist linked below.
Hot Work includes any activities that produce flames, sparks, or heat including welding, brazing, grinding, and sawing that have the potential to cause a fire, fire alarm activation, smoke or burning odors. If these activities are performed inside, it requires the use of a Hot Work Permit. Please contact EHS at x3201 at least 24 hours in advance of the work to obtain a permit.
Indoor air quality (IAQ) problems can result from many causes. While mold growth has received considerable attention, it is not the only cause of indoor air quality concerns. If you believe you are suffering from indoor air quality issues in your work area, please contact Risk Management (x3525) or EHS (x7241) for evaluation.
Job Hazard Analysis (JHA) is an important safety tool to implement in the workplace. There are many hazards out there that cannot be identified and mitigated through other safety programs. It is for this reason that specific JHAs must be performed for various tasks and jobs in which hazards have not been previously identified.
Various ladders have different hazards. Using a step stool is very different from using an extension ladder and therefore it is important employees know the hazards of each of the tools they are working with.
Lockout Tagout is an essential practice when performing maintenance on equipment. The control of all hazardous energy is necessary in order to keep employees safe.
In general, LOTO must be utilized during all service and maintenance activities including: constructing, installing, adjusting, modifying, lubricating, cleaning, and adjusting or changing tools. Examples of equipment/machines that may be encountered at UCCS that are subject to LOTO include, but are not limited to: gas, water and steam lines; HVAC equipment; kitchen equipment such as slicers, mixers, dishwashers, trash compactors, and garbage disposals; woodworking and metalworking machines; laboratory equipment such as centrifuges, autoclaves and high powered lasers; conveyors; hydraulic lifts; elevators, etc.
If lockout tagout is a program that is required for your area of work or research, please read the UCCS Lockout Tagout Program and contact EHS at x7241 for training.
Machine shops are a high risk environment, no matter how much experience or training you have. It is important to always follow safety precautions and understand the specific piece of equipment you are working with. Each individual machine shop on campus may have it's own rules so make sure you are aware of any special requirements before working on the equipment. There also may be additional signage and guidance provided by a shop manager that must be followed.
Manually lifting heavy equipment is an occupational hazards for almost all employees. There are techniques and equipment that can be used to reduce or completely eliminate the risk of strain on the back. Use the links below to understand more about lifting in the workplace.
A job hazard analysis is a great tool to use when evaluating manual lifting tasks, their risks, and solutions. Contact EHS at x7241 for more guidance and information.
Slip, trip, and fall hazards are present everywhere and can cause severe injury. While on campus, be mindful of obstacles in your path, spills on the ground, and ice and snow.
Resources from outside sources are provided for informational purposes only. Publication does not in any way endorse a particular company or product or affect current UCCS policies and procedures.