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Safety Office to review required emergency plans

The Safety Office has embarked on a project to verify that every department, laboratory and center has an Emergency Action Plan (EAP) that meets US Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requirements.

Safety Office personnel will set up appointments to meet with EAP coordinators to review their department's plan beginning December 1. The goal is for all departments, laboratories and centers (DLC) to complete or update the plan by January 31.

OSHA requires employers to have a written--and current--EAP to inform employees what actions to take in the event of an emergency. This includes but is not limited to evacuation emergency shutdown of operations, fire and accident prevention, emergency planning, reporting emergencies, completion of evacuation plans, designated primary and alternate meeting and waiting areas, a procedure for accounting of personnel, appointed fire marshal(s) and warden(s) as appropriate, evacuation planning for disabled persons, and references to other related emergency and security procedures.

The Safety Office will review and approve each EAP individually. Particular attention will be given to the evacuation plan and the department's subsequent arrangements for a meeting location and method to account for staff.

Each DLC should have at least one EAP coordinator and a designated backup to ensure the EAP is maintained and employees are trained or retrained to perform the actions required in their EAP.

The Safety Office is conducting workshops to assist safety coordinators on Tuesdays from 10am-noon in Rm E25-401 through November 10. Contact the Safety Office at x3-4736 or wmcshea, or visit the office in Rm E19-207 to register. The office also provides worksheets and a sample EAP program via e-mail, hard copy or floppy disk.

A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on October 21, 1998.

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