Occupational Safety & Health
It is the policy of Florida Institute of Technology (Florida Tech) to provide and ensure a safe and healthy environment for the Florida Tech community by constantly maintaining an effective safety and environmental/occupational health program. In fulfilling this task as an educational institute, the greatest responsibilities of the Florida Tech are to protect personnel safety, preserve its physical assets and protect the environment. It is also Florida Tech's policy to comply with all applicable safety, health, and environmental protection laws, regulations and requirements. In the absence of specific regulatory statutes and mandates for particular situations, best management safety practices shall be followed.
Florida Tech's goal is to prevent all workplace injuries and illnesses, property losses or damage, and adverse environmental impacts. Achieving this goal is the responsibility of every member of the Florida Tech's community.
Under federal law, you are entitled to a safe workplace. Your employer must provide a workplace free of known health and safety hazards. If you have concerns, you have the right to speak up about them without fear of retaliation. You also have the right to:
- Be trained in a language you understand
- Work on machines that are safe
- Be provided required safety gear, such as gloves or a harness and lifeline for falls
- Be protected from toxic chemicals
- Request an OSHA inspection, and speak to the inspector
- Report an injury or illness, and get copies of your medical records
- See copies of the workplace injury and illness log
- Review records of work-related injuries and illnesses
- Get copies of test results done to find hazards in the workplace
Job Hazard Analysis (JHA)
A JHA is a technique that focuses on job tasks as a way to identify hazards before they occur. It focuses on the relationship between the worker, the task, the tools, and the work environment. Ideally, after you identify uncontrolled hazards, you will take steps to eliminate or reduce them to an acceptable risk level.
Importance: Many workers are injured and killed at the workplace every day in the United States. Safety and health can add value to your business, your job, and your life. You can help prevent workplace injuries and illnesses by looking at your workplace operations, establishing proper job procedures, and ensuring that all employees are trained properly.
One of the best ways to determine and establish proper work procedures is to conduct a JHA. A JHA is one component of the larger commitment of a safety and health management system.
Supervisors can use the findings of a JHA to eliminate and prevent hazards in their workplaces. This is likely to result in fewer worker injuries and illnesses; safer, more effective work methods; reduced workers’ compensation costs; and increased worker productivity. The analysis also can be a valuable tool for training new employees in the steps required to perform their jobs safely.
Contact: Please contact Environmental Health & Safety to schedule a JHA.
Note: Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) is the responsibility of the individual department to cover their assigned personnel.
Aerial & Scissor Lift Plan
This plan has been established to ensure the safe operation of aerial and scissor lifts. Additionally, this Plan ensures that employees understand and comply with applicable regulations and industrial safety standards related to aerial/scissor lifts.
Compressed Gas Safety
Hazards associated with compressed gases include oxygen displacement, fires, explosions, and toxic gas exposures, as well as the physical hazards associated with high pressure systems. Special storage, use, and handling precautions are necessary in order to control these hazards.
The purpose of this plan is to apply ergonomic principles to the workplace to reduce the number and severity of musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs), thus decreasing workers’ compensation claims and, where possible, increasing productivity, quality, efficiency as well as employee health. An ergonomically-designed work environment maximizes employee comfort while minimizing the risk of undue physical stress that often leads to injuries.
The objective of the Florida Tech Fall Protection Plan is to identify and evaluate fall hazards to which employees will be exposed, and to provide specific training as required by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Fall Protection Standard (see the “References” section of this plan for specific regulation sources.
The hearing conservation plan requires the monitoring of areas/equipment that may pose hearing damage to employees. This exposure to noise levels at or above 85 decibels (dB) averaged over 8 working hours, or 8-hour time-weighted average (TWA). Florida Tech will monitor all employees whose noise exposure is equivalent to or greater than a noise exposure received in 8 hours where the noise level is constantly 85 dB.
The exposure measurement will include all continuous, intermittent, and impulsive noise within an 80 dB to 130 dB range and will be taken during a typical work situation. This requirement is performance-oriented because it allows Florida Tech to choose the monitoring method that best suits each individual situation.
Florida Tech will repeat monitoring whenever changes in production, process, or controls increase noise exposure. These changes may mean that more employees need to be included in the plan or that their hearing protectors may no longer provide adequate protection.
Employees are entitled to observe monitoring procedures and will receive notification of the results of exposure monitoring.
Florida Tech will carefully check or calibrate instruments used for monitoring employee exposures to ensure that the measurements are accurate. Calibration procedures are unique to specific instruments and Florida Tech will follow the manufacturer’s instructions to determine when and how extensively to calibrate the instrument.
The purpose of Florida Tech's Hot Work Plan is to reduce risk and increase safety by utilizing control measures to protect personnel, property, and the environment from the hazards of hot work activities. Hot Work activities include but are not limited to burning, welding, cutting, torch cutting, brazing, torch soldering, and applications that generate heat, sparks, arcs, open flames, or other fire hazards in proximity to flammable or combustible materials.
The purpose of this plan is to establish methods for safely isolating machines or equipment from energy sources during routine maintenance and servicing of those machines and equipment. Those who service and maintain machinery or equipment are especially vulnerable because the machinery or equipment might become energized while being serviced, or stored energy might be unexpectedly released. Utilizing the Lockout/Tagout system ensures personnel safety. The Lockout/Tagout system is commonly referred to as “LOTO”.
Machine Guarding Plan
Moving machine parts have the potential to cause severe workplace injuries or death, such as crushed fingers or hands, amputations, burns, or blindness. Safeguards are essential for protecting workers from these preventable injuries. Any machine part, function, or process that may cause injury must be safeguarded. When the operation of a machine or accidental contact can injure the operator or others in the vicinity, the hazards must be eliminated or controlled.
This Plan provides guidance on safety requirements related to machine safeguards which are used to protect employees from injury during the operation of machines and equipment.
Minors in the Laboratory
In keeping with Florida Institute of Technology (Florida Tech)’s mission of education and outreach, it may be appropriate for persons under the age of eighteen years to occasionally enter Florida Tech research laboratories or animal facilities for educational purposes.
The purpose of this plan is to identify under what circumstances and/or conditions minors will be allowed to visit, work or conduct research in Florida Tech research laboratories where hazardous materials are used or hazardous procedures are conducted, including animal facilities. These guidelines are necessary to help protect a minor’s health and safety and to provide reasonable measures to prevent harm arising from potential exposure to hazardous agents or conditions.
Personal Protective Equipment
Florida Tech is committed to providing a safe and healthful environment for all employees, students, and visitors.
Every day work hazards include but are not limited to chemicals, sharp edges, flying objects, sparks, dust, falling objects, and noise. OSHA requires protection of employees from these hazards. The preferred methods of protection include engineering controls, work practice and administrative controls. Examples of these include putting up barriers to prevent access to a hazard or operating loud machinery at times when there are no employees on site.
When these methods are inadequate or unfeasible for protection, personal protective equipment (PPE) must be provided to workers by their employer. PPE include eye protection, gloves, lab coats, hard hats, hearing protection, respirators, foot protection, and full body suits. Hearing protection and respirators are covered under Florida Tech’s Hearing Conservation Plan, and Respiratory Protection Plan; other areas for PPE fall under the Chemical Hygiene Plan, Radiation Safety and Bloodborne Pathogen Plan.
This Plan has been developed in accordance with the regulations set forth in the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's (OSHA), 29 CFR 1910.132: Personal Protective Equipment.
Portable Ladder Safety Plan
It is the policy of Florida Tech to prevent injuries to all employees and ensure their safety at work. This Plans purpose is to evaluate all slip, trip, and fall hazards related to the use of portable ladders and implement procedures and communication programs to protect workers from injury.
Powered Industrial Truck Plan
This plan is designed to provide guidance to Florida Tech personnel that operate powered industrial trucks (forklifts). The goal is safe operation of the equipment, no personnel injury or damage to property through fostering safety.
There are currently no specific OSHA standards for workplace violence.
However, under the General Duty Clause, Section 5(a)(1) of the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are required to provide their employees with a place of employment that is “free from recognized hazards that are causing or are likely to cause death or serious physical harm." The courts have interpreted OSHA's general duty clause to mean that an employer has a legal obligation to provide a workplace free of conditions or activities that either the employer or industry recognizes as hazardous and that cause, or are likely to cause, death or serious physical harm to employees when there is a feasible method to abate the hazard. OSHA has developed Enforcement Procedures and Scheduling for Occupational Exposure to Workplace Violence, which provides guidance and procedures to be followed when conducting inspections and issuing citations related to the occupational exposure to workplace violence.
An employee that has experienced acts of workplace violence, or becomes aware of threats, intimidation, or other indicators showing that the potential for violence in the workplace exists, would be on notice of the risk of workplace violence and should implement a workplace violence prevention program combined with engineering controls, administrative controls, and training.