Health and Safety, University of Otago, Christchurch, University of Otago, New Zealand

By: Christchurch School Of Medicine  06-Dec-2011
Keywords: School, Health and Safety

Emergency Telephone 777

All occupants and visitors to the school are expected to be familiar with this plan, to avoid hazards, and to know how to react to an emergency. You owe this to yourself and to others who rely on you for their safety.

Emergency Procedures, Emergency Floor Wardens and Safety Officers

Safety Policy

The School believes that, as an educational institution, safety standards should be exemplary. Staff, students and visitors will recognise the authority of Wardens during emergencies.

  • Overall responsibility for compliance with safety requirements is delegated to the Business Manager.
  • A Safety, Security and General Committee, representative of all major areas of the School will advise the Dean on safety standards and hazards.
  • Principal Researchers and Department Heads are responsible for ensuring that their staff have adequate knowledge, skills and attitudes to work in safety, and will promote attendance at safety training courses.
  • Accident limitation instructions and Civil Defence equipment and instructions are to be visible and easily accessible.
  • Each person is responsible not only for his/her own safety but will act in a manner that does not cause hazards to others.
  • Evacuation procedures will be prominently displayed in lecture rooms.

Building Safety Design

The emergency evacuation pathways are the stairwells, on the east and west sides of the building near the lifts. These stairwells are designed to resist fire for a considerable period of time, and are places of safety. Disabled folk may be left (with a companion) on the stair landings for the Fire Brigade to rescue.

Fire doors are designed to slow the spread of fire. They will also keep smoke and fire from the stairwells to enable people to evacuate the building safely.

Extinguishers and hose reels are in each foyer. Manual fire alarms, smoke detectors and ceiling sprinklers are connected to the Fire Brigade.

Alarm tests are 1 short ring, for all others, evacuate.

The major structure is designed to withstand a serious shock (Richter 8. 7) with minimal damage. Potential hazards are heavy equipment (fridges, freezers, filing cabinets and bookcases) toppling or moving; glassware and bottles of chemicals shattering; energy plant on the 3rd and 8th floors moving (most likely cause of structural damage) and ceiling tiles dislodging.

The ability to get people safely out of the building depends on:

  • Smoke and fire kept out of the stairwells - Do not wedge open stairwell or any other fire doors
  • Clear corridors - Keep equipment out of corridors. NOTE: University policy bans bicycles in the building.
  • Extinguishers that work - Do not play with fire equipment
  • Your vigilance - Report any potential hazards

The Health and Safety in Employment Act 1993 requires each of us to ensure our own safety and that of those around us. It imposes severe penalties if you place others at risk.

Keywords: Health and Safety, School

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