Workplace Safety

The campuswide Workplace Safety Program serves as the university’s central program for creating a safe and healthful work environment. 

Space Heaters

Office of Environment, Health & Safety

Space Heaters in University Buildings Fact Sheet

The Fire Prevention Division of the Office of Environment, Health & Safety discourages University employees from using space heaters in their workplaces because of fire risks.

Copy Machines

University of Edinburgh

Photocopiers and Laser Printers Health Hazards (PDF)

Information sheet from the Health and Safety Department, the University of Edinburgh

Workplace Safety Program

Office of Environment, Health & Safety

Employee Receives Electrical Shock

March 31, 2004
What Happened?

A university employee was changing ballasts above a drop ceiling in a department reception area. The employee received an electrical shock from a 277volt circuit and was knocked off a step stool that she had placed on top of the reception desk. She fell from a height of 46.5 inches, but received only minor injuries and returned to work the following day.

What was the cause? The power source was not locked and tagged out. Instead, the light switch was turned off. The ladder to be used was too large to work from behind the reception desk, so a...

Ladder Fall Results in $19,125 Fine and Serious Injury

August 31, 2009

In 2008 and 2009 UC Berkeley experienced two serious injuries resulting from falls from ladders.

2009 Incident

During the summer a campus employee was disassembling equipment attached to a wall. He was using a wooden step ladder that had been left on-site by a contractor. He did not open the ladder and the ladder was lacking anti-skid material on its feet. The height of his stance on the ladder was approximately three to four feet from the concrete floor. The ladder, which was leaning against the wall, slipped and he fell to the floor and sustained a serious injury to his right arm/...

Severe Finger Injury from Wedding Ring

July 31, 2013
What happened?

An employee was working in the bed of a large pickup truck. The truck was equipped with a Tommy Gate lift and hinged gate doors that opened outward. The employee was attempting to get down from the truck, so he placed his left hand on the door hinge and jumped down. His wedding ring caught on the grease fitting and caused an avulsion* injury of the finger, also referred to as “degloving.”

*Avulsion means the removal of the skin and soft tissue, usually leaving the underlying bone and tendons, however fractured or damaged. Avulsions require significant...

Shop Safety Program

UC Berkeley has over 50 shops that provide academic and research support to the UC Berkeley community. This program is intended to cover any space where materials are fabricated, maintained, modified, repaired or tested, including:

Academic shops in which student instruction and use are major components Professional shops in which research support, fabrication and facilities maintenance are major components

The UC Berkeley Shop Safety Program provides guidance and direction for establishing and maintaining a safe and healthy environment in these shops. This program applies to anyone...