New Field Safety Hazard Assessment Question

April 23, 2024

A NEW Field Hazards section is now live in UC Berkeley's Lab Hazard Assessment Tool (LHAT)

What to expect? 

During recertification of existing assessments, PIs will see a new fieldwork screening question. If any members of your research group conduct fieldwork or research off-campus, mark "Yes."  

Example fieldwork activities include:

  • specimen collection

  • surveys

  • field testing

  • other work outdoors or off-campus 

A "Yes" response will trigger guidance on relevant travel policies and field risk management resources. As a reminder, hazard assessments must be recertified once a year. Only PIs can recertify hazard assessments. Learn more about hazard assessments.

Five reminders for the Spring/Summer field season:

  1. Register all University travel >100 miles via UC Away (Calnet login required) for travel insurance documentation, 24/7 travel assistance, and a destination-specific trip brief. 

  2. For international travel, review the US Department of State (DOS) Travel Advisory for your destination(s). Travel to State Department Level 4 / 'Do Not Travel' destinations requires further campus review beyond your department. See International Travel Guidance, Protocol, & Approval Processes for more information.

  3. Outdoor workers and researchers should complete online Heat Illness Prevention (EHS 702) and Wildfire Smoke Protection (EHS 704) training for compliance with Cal/OSHA, available via the UC Learning Center. Additional training such as weather forecasting, off-road driving, safe & inclusive fieldwork, preventing harassment, and mental health in the field is offered via the UC Field Safety Leadership Training Library

  4. Create a written field safety plan to review with all participants and carry with you. A template is available on the EH&S Field Safety Program webpage.

  5. Review your plans and discuss safety concerns and precautions in advance of travel with your supervisor or advisor. Maintain a check-in plan and a campus contact to be able to discuss new or emerging concerns during travel and make informed decisions together. 

Following these simple steps supports safe and successful research. Learn more on the Field Safety Program web page.