The University of Melbourne

Occupational Health and Safety Committee

Meeting Number 1/98

A meeting of the Occupational Health and Safety Committee was held in the Conference Room 1, Old Physics Building, on Tuesday, 3 February 1998 at 2.15 pm.


Prof B Sheehan (Chair)                        Dr P Marley                                   
Mr R Mason                                    Mr J Colebatch                                
Mr J Carmichael                               Ms J Wedgwood                                 
Dr M Bullen                                   Dr L Huq                                      
Mr G Suckling                                 Dr M Livett                                   
Ms L Baré                                     Mr B Greenwood                                

Participating Observers

Ms M Smart                                                                                  

In Attendance

Ms N Austin                                   Ms F Grant                                    


Mr D Too                                      Prof T Wedd                                   
Ms M Harris                                   Ms P Cardinaletti                             

1. Minutes of Meeting 4/97

The minutes of meeting 4/97 were accepted.

2. Reports from University Safety Committees

There were no items to report from University safety committees. Any issues arising will be dealt with by SafetyMAP implementation.

3. Action Items from Meeting 4/97

3.1 Safety Clauses in Position Descriptions

It was noted by the Committee that the Vice Chancellor is encouraging the development of a standard position description for Heads of Departments.

3.2 Checklist of safety signs

Guidelines for safety signs and copies of all signs were circulated at the meeting. All signs are to Australian Standards and easily available. It was recommended that in areas of common buildings or where there are unresolved concerns, these should be reported to the building supervisor.

3.3 Guidelines for Fieldwork

The guidelines for fieldwork have been circulated and are available for viewing on the Web ( There has been some feedback to the Risk Management Office about implementation of the guidelines.

3.4 Safety Information on the Web

The committee noted that the University Web page is being redesigned to enhance the University's corporate image. It was decided to write a letter to Jane Stephens, Corporate Relations about the importance of safety and environmental concerns to the University and its image and to ensure that this is reflected on the internal version of the home page.

3.5 Asbestos Report

It was noted that the current removal program for asbestos in the University is for plant and service rooms. In 1998 $650,000 has been budgeted for further removal of asbestos.

3.6 Resale of University Equipment

The committee noted that the resale guidelines had been included in the Occupational Health and Safety Manual and forwarded to Financial Operations for inclusion in the Financial Procedures Manual.

3.7 SafetyMAP Meeting with Deans

A meeting with the Deans was held. The Chairperson suggested that a follow up letter on the commitments at the meeting should be sent to the Dean's involved. Risk Management will send a draft letter to Prof Sheehan. One Dean asked for an amendment to the accreditation date for his faculty.

3.8 First Aid Kits

It was suggested that first aid kits be included on the safety inspection checklist.

4. No Smoking Policy Extension

The Student Union and University House have been contacted about the outcomes of the smoking policy questionnaire. It was decided to conduct a trial of bins for cigarette butts in five selected areas. No smoking signs will be put up around building air intake vents which are on or near ground level as detailed in the Engineer's Office report of October 1997.

5. Reported Incidents Performance

It was noted that with greater awareness of existing policy generated through SafetyMAP more incidents are being reported. Therefore a reduction of 50% in incidents has not been achieved. However, a 50% reduction in the severity (lost days) incidents has been achieved. This reduction meets the intent of improving the safety of the work place.

6. Occupational Health and Safety Targets for 1998

The targets for 1998 were accepted by the committee. The committee requested that the Work place substances legislation be removed until a draft is available for public comment. The committee also requested that Occupational Health and Safety responsibilities in position descriptions be added.

7. SafetyMAP update

A written report was circulated at the meeting. It was stated that 1997 was a year of learning and consolidation of SafetyMAP knowledge. It was noted that currently two faculties have been accredited. Science, Medicine and the MTC should all be accredited before the end on the year. There has been a 50% increase in safety training in both 1996 and 1997. In 1998 key staff members of the Risk Management Office each work with a faculty to improve service delivery.

8. Environmental Audit Report

It was reported to the committee that stage 2 of the environmental project has been started. During O week a stand will be shared between security and environment to encourage students involvement and awareness.

9. Report from Health and Safety Representative Meeting

Testing of fume cupboards was discussed by the committee. A report will be given to the committee at the next meeting about the fume cupboard testing program. Health and safety representatives and committee members were asked to report any fume cupboards which are not labelled (after 1/4/98) as being tested to Property, Planning and Development.

10. Any Other Business

A verbal report was given about the Induction of minor contractors. 88 companies were inducted on Friday 30 January, 1998. Each company signed an acknowledgment of attendance and commitment to the University's safety guidelines. Contractors who have not been inducted should not be working on campus. It was noted that some departments employ their own contractors believing them to be cheaper, and that this matter is to be addressed.

The meeting closed at 3.50 pm.

The next meeting will be on Tuesday 5 May, 1998 at 2.15 pm in Conference Room 1, Old Physics Building.

Action Plan from this meeting:

Topic                  Action Needed                  By Whom                 By When       
Checklist of safety    H & S Reps to discuss with     J Wedgwood              5 May 1998    
signs                  Building supervisors, who                                            
                       will put up safety signs                                             
Safety Clauses in      Meeting with Dept Heads to     L Baré and G Suckling   5 May 98      
Position Descriptions  discuss further                                                      
Safety Information     Write letter to Jane           F Grant                 5 May 98      
on Web                 Stephens, Corp Relations                                             
                       about importance of safety                                           
                       to Uni's image                                                       
Resale of University   Publish on Web and publicise   F Grant                 5 May 98      
Equipment              to departments                                                       
SafetyMAP              Send letter to Heads and       N Austin Prof Sheehan   5 May 98      
                       Deans detailing Uni's                                                
                       commitment to safety                                                 
No Smoking Policy      Conduct trial of bins for      G Suckling and Grounds  11 Aug 98     
                       cigarette butts and hand                                             
                       removable no smoking signs                                           
First Aid Kits         Risk Management Office to      A Boldt                 5 May 98      
                       look at what the Stationery                                          
                       Store provides and give                                              

Completed Actions

Topic                  Action Completed               By Whom                 When          
Safety Signs           Checklist of safety signs      G Suckling              3 Feb 98      
                       were developed for P & B                                             
Asbestos Report        Drafted procedure for          J Colebatch             3 Feb 98      
                       dealing with contractors re.                                         
                       asbestos and reported on                                             
Fieldwork Guidelines   Published on Web and           F Grant and V Jackson   3 Feb 98      
                       circulated to departments                                            
Safety Information     Mr Riedl was informed of       Prof Sheehan            3 Feb 98      
on the Web             Committee's support for                                              
                       internal/external Web page.                                          
                       Requested info on progress                                           
                       of project.                                                          
Resale of University   Changed order for purpose      F Grant and V Jackson   3 Feb 98      
Equipment              and responsibilities. Sent                                           
                       to Central Inventory and                                             
                       Financial Operations                                                 
SafetyMAP              Held meeting with Deans        G Suckling and N        3 Feb 98      
                       regarding resourcing and       Austin                                
                       reported back                                                        

Attendance Record for 1998 - 1 meeting held to date

Name                    No           No Mtgs      Apologies       
                        Possible     Attended     Received        
Professor B A Sheehan   1            1            0               
Ms E Baré               1            1            0               
Mr J Colebatch          1            1            0               
Dr M Bullen             1            1            0               
Prof T Wedd             1            0            1               
Ms J Wedgwood           1            1            0               
Mr J Carmichael         1            1            0               
Mr R Mason              1            1            0               
Dr L Huq                1            1            0               
Ms P Cardinaletti       1            0            1               
Mr P Marley             1            1            0               
Mr D Too                1            0            1               
Dr M Livett             1            1            0               
Ms M Harris             1            0            1               
Mr G Suckling           1            1            0               
Mr B Greenwood          1            1            0               
Ms M Smart              1            1            0               


Professor B A Sheehan  Chairman               Dr L. Huq            H & S Rep                
Ms E Baré              Management Rep         Ms C. Deppeler       Central Secretariat      
Mr J Colebatch         Management Rep         Ms J Wilmot          Baillieu Library         
Dr M Bullen            Management Rep         Ms J Wedgwood        H & S Rep                
Mr J Carmichael        H & S Rep, Chemistry   Mr D Too             Student Rep              
Ms B. Young            Biohazards Committee   Ms N Austin          Project Officer, RMO     
Mr B Greenwood         H & S Rep, P&B         Mr G Suckling        Safety Manager, RMO      
Ms M Harris            H & S Rep, VCA         Dr L Scott           Animal Welfare Officer   
Dr M Livett            Female Rep             Mr P Marley          H & S Rep, Pharmacology  
Mr R I A Marshman      Management Rep         Mr L Vines           Safety Officer, S.       
Mr R Mason             H & S Rep, Physics     Ms M Smart           Post Graduate Rep        
Ms P Cardinaletti      H & S Rep, CSHE        Prof T Wedd          Nominee: for Marshman    

Minutes will also be distributed to Heads of Department via email and Laboratory Managers via email once the papers have been accepted by the Administrative Committee.

Contact person for Agenda and Minutes

Fiona Grant, Risk Management Office Ph. 9344 7702





A. Recommendations

No Smoking Policy Extension

A trial of bins for cigarette butts was recommended for five selected areas. No smoking signs will be hung around door ways and air intake vents.

B. Reports

Asbestos Report

The committee received a report about progress of asbestos removal.

SafetyMAP update

A written report about progress towards SafetyMAP implementation was circulated.

Reports for University Safety Committees

Reports from Departmental Safety Committees were reviewed by the Risk Management Office. There were no issues arising that needed presentation to the University Occupational Health and Safety Committee.

Environmental Audit Report

The committee received a written report about progress on the Environmental Management project.

C. Other Items Discussed

1. Minutes of Meeting 4/97

2. Safety clauses in position descriptions

3. Checklist of safety signs

4. Guidelines for fieldwork

5. Safety information on the Web

6. Resale of University equipment

7. SafetyMAP meeting with Deans

8. First aid kits

9. No smoking policy extension

10. Reported incidents performance

11. Occupational Health and Safety Targets for 1998

12. Induction of minor contractors

Details of matters discussed by the Committee are available in the papers supplied to Central Secretariat