New campus field research safety policy

To: UC Santa Cruz Community

From: Scott Brandt, Vice Chancellor, Office of Research

I am pleased to announce that as a result of the excellent work of Field Safety Coordinator Steve Loveridge, Director of Environmental Health and Safety Lisa Wisser, and AVC for Risk and Safety Services Jean Marie Scott, UC Santa Cruz finalized the UC system’s first official field safety policy, Field Research Safety. This new policy follows a familiar risk management paradigm:

  • Risk Assessment
  • Planning
  • Communication
  • Participation

Field research can present unique safety challenges when conducted in remote or potentially hazardous environments. The purpose of the Field Research Safety policy is to address the need to manage field research safety risk. The safety risk assessment process includes identifying hazards, evaluating exposure potential, and implementing appropriate mitigating measures. Principal Investigators, academic supervisors, field team leaders, and other responsible individuals must control safety risks associated with both the research and the local environment.

EH&S has created a variety of tools to help researchers address the aims of the policy. A field safety plan template for remote field work, UC travel resources (UC Away and iJET), and details regarding the satellite communication device loaner program can be found on the EH&S Field Research website.

I encourage all members of the research community to familiarize yourself with the policy and ensure that the campus field research programs are managed within the best practices for this work.

For additional information about the UCSC Field Safety program, please contact