COVID-19 Lab Spot Check Inspections

July 7, 2020

EH&S will be performing spot checks of labs on campus to confirm that COVID-19 research ramp-up plans are being followed (checklist below). These will be coordinated with the department safety coordinator or building coordinator. A general lab safety inspector will reach out to LSCs before the inspection. However, random spot checks may occur if scheduling proves difficult.

Lab Inspections during the COVID-19 Pandemic

When: Starting mid-July 2020
Findings: A summary of the spot checks will be sent to the DSC

The next general lab safety...

Patrick Kaulback

Assistant Manager, Health & Safety; REHS
Workplace Safety
Shop Safety
Food & Water Safety
Food Facilities
Event Safety

COVID-19 Guidance: Campus Food Facilities

May 26, 2020
Guidance for Campus Food Facilities

To reduce the risk of virus transmission during the COVID-19 pandemic, food facilities must follow guidance from the California Department of Public Health and establish a written Workplace - Specific Plan that includes Control Measures and Screening, Cleaning and Disinfecting Protocols, and Physical Distancing Guidelines.

Key points: Assign one employee as the person responsible for...

The FDA warns against using hand sanitizer containing toxic methanol

August 5, 2020
Don't Use Methanol-based Hand Sanitizer.

The FDA has seen a sharp increase in hand sanitizer products that are labeled to contain ethanol (also known as ethyl alcohol) but that have tested positive for methanol contamination. Hand sanitizers that contain methanol - a “toxic alcohol” - can cause blindness and/or death when absorbed through the skin or when swallowed.

The FDA has a created webpage offering a...

Prevent Hand Sanitizer Burns

May 28, 2020
You can prevent burns by allowing alcohol-based sanitizers to dry/evaporate before resuming work activity.

Hand sanitizers contain high concentrations of alcohol and alcohol vapors can flame or flash if exposed to an ignition source, switches, or any surface containing static electricity.

When a disinfectant or hand sanitizer ignites it produces an almost invisible, blue flame that can quickly produce harmful burns.

Take Action Avoid touching any surface until the hand-sanitizer has completely dried. Stay away from any potential ignition source while sanitizer...

Lab Self-Inspection Checklist

Office of Environment, Health & Safety

Reviewing the EH&S lab self-inspection checklist is a good way to prepare for inspections. The department safety coordinator for each department or an EH&S lab safety specialist will reach out to each lab to schedule an inspection time.

Contact the campus chemical hygiene officer at (510) 643-6381 or with any questions or concerns about the EH&S General Lab Safety Inspection Program.

Coronavirus COVID-19 Information

March 5, 2020

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information:

For the latest information on the coronavirus outbreak from campus leadership, please visit the Berkeley News - Coronavirus Information website.

If you are looking for additional health-related information, please refer to the latest UHS Health Advisory and the Coronavirus Health...

Use of Heaters in Temporary Tents & Awnings

December 21, 2020

CAL FIRE Information Bulletin
Office of the State Fire Marshal

Issued: December 15, 2020

Use of Heaters in Temporary Tents &...

Tracking COVID in Bay Area Sewers

November 4, 2020

UC Berkeley researchers have developed a unique, easy, and effective method for testing the presence of the COVID-19 virus in the wastewater flowing through municipal sewer systems.

Tim Pine, an environmental protection specialist, and Al Sanchez, a senior hazardous materials technician of the Office of Environment, Health and Safety have been collecting weekly samples of wastewater from University Village since mid-July and also samples from sewers that drain from UC Berkeley’s undergraduate dormitories and surrounding neighborhoods. Testing of wastewater will help guide public...