Environmental Health and Safety

Injury and Illness Prevention Program

It is the policy of San Jose State University College of Engineering that every employee and student is entitled to a safe and healthful place in which to work. To this end, every reasonable effort will be made in the interest of Accident Prevention, Fire Protection, and Health Preservation.

The management concept of San Jose State University College of Engineering is not production and safety; it is production with safety. When production with safety is achieved, production with efficiency is attained simultaneously.

We at San Jose State University College of Engineering have a basic responsibility to make the safety of human beings a part of our daily, hourly concern. We will be counting on you to do your part in making our program an effective one.

The successful operation of San Jose State University College of Engineering will depend not only on accomplishments and service, but also how safely each job is performed. There is no job so important - nor any service so urgent - that we cannot take time to work safely. I consider the safety of our personnel to be of prime importance, and I expect your full cooperation in making our program effective.

Sheryl Ehrman
Dean of Engineering
San Jose State University

Under the authority of the Dean of Engineering, the following person/persons are responsible for implementing the Injury and Illness Prevention Plan for San Jose State University College of Engineering.*

Neil Peters, Building and Safety Specialist
Office: ENG186A
Phone: 408-924-3967
Email: neil.peters@sjsu.edu

Management is responsible for ensuring that all safety and health policies and procedures are clearly communicated and understood by all employees. Managers and supervisors are expected to enforce the rules fairly and uniformly.

Our system of ensuring that all workers comply with the rules and maintain a safe work environment include: Informing all workers of the provisions of our IIP Program Evaluating the safety performance of all workers; Recognizing employees who perform safe and healthful work practices Provide training to workers whose safety performance is deficient Disciplining workers for failure to comply with safe and healthful work practices; and

Department Chair Responsibilities

In effectively executing their safety responsibilities, department chairs will:

  1. Familiarize themselves with the safety program and ensure its effective implementation. Be aware of all safety considerations when introducing a new process, procedure, machine or material to the workplace.
  2. Give maximum support to all programs and committees whose function is to promote safety and health. Actively participate in safety committees as required.
  3. Review all accidents to ensure that proper reports are completed and appropriate action is taken to prevent repetition.
  4. Identify Lab Director for all facilities under your supervision containing hazards. In the case of a student-led space, a student Lab Director should be identified.
  5. Maintain and report a list of hazards presented by the facility, including (but not limited to): chemical, biological, electrical, fire, machinery, radiation, and/or soldering hazards.
  6. Maintain a list of level of training required for students, student assistants, and/or lab technicians who work in the facility.
  7. Maintain a list of activities which require supervision for students and/or student assistants.

Failure to comply or repeated violations during safety inspections will result in the facility being shut down until safe operating conditions can be ensured.

Lab Director Responsibilities

The Lab Directors are the foundation of the safety program. Their responsibilities are to:

  1. Familiarize themselves with the college safety policies, programs and procedures. Actively participate in safety committees as required, including peer review and vetting of new hazards.
  2. Provide safety training required for their facility to employees and students working in their facility. At a minimum, safety training should be provided at the start of each semester and when new employees or students join their group.
  3. Investigate injuries to determine cause, then take action to prevent repetition. Report injuries to the Department Chair and to the Building and Safety Specialist.
  4. See that all injuries, no matter how minor, are treated immediately and referred to the College Safety Office, located in ENG186A to ensure prompt reporting to the University Personnel’s Workers Compensation Specialist.
  5. Inspect work areas often to detect unsafe conditions and work practices. Promptly correct unsafe conditions found from self-inspections, or from the college safety staff. Utilize college self-inspection checklists as required.
  6. Maintain list of individuals with access to the facility. Keep records of safety training completion. Ensure door signs are up to date.

Employee and Student Responsibilities

Employee responsibilities for safety include the following:

  1. Adhere to all safety rules and regulations.
  2. Wear appropriate safety equipment as required.
  3. Maintain equipment in good condition, with all safety guards in place when in operation.
  4. Report all injuries, no matter how minor, immediately to the Lab Director and/or to the college Building and Safety Specialist to ensure immediate action if the Lab Director or Chair cannot be reached.
  5. Encourage co-workers to work safely.
  6. Report unsafe acts and conditions to the Lab Director.

We recognize that open, two-way communication between management and staff on health and safety issues is essential to an injury-free, productive workplace. The goal of our safety training program is to develop safe work habits and attitudes. It is critical that new workers understand work rules and procedures prior to being assigned a job. The following system of communication is designed to facilitate a continuous flow of safety and health information between management and staff in a form that is readily understandable and consists of the following items

Job Specific Training

All employees in the College will receive job specific training on at least an annual basis as needed including, but not limited to, the following topics:

  • Review the IIPP
  • Ladder Safety
  • Compressed Air Safety
  • Compressed Gas Cylinders
  • Chemical Safety
  • Forklift Operation
  • Office Ergonomics
  • Personal Protective Equipment
  • Hand and Power Tool Safety
  • Lifting and Moving
  • Lockout – Tagout
  • Machine Guarding
  • Shop Safety
  • Fire Extinguisher Operation
  • Heat Illness
  • Welding, Cutting and Brazing

Safety Training 

The Lab Director of each facility will oversee regular toolbox talk safety meetings for all employees and students who work in their facility. These meetings will include a variety of topics that are relevant to the health and safety of our employees in their particular job function and in their facility. The frequency of these meetings will be determined and administered by the Lab Director. At a minimum safety training will be provided at the start of the semester and/or when new employees or students start to work on projects in their area.


We have open communication between staff and management. All employees and students are encouraged to report any unsafe conditions to management. This is done without fear of reprisal and all reports will be considered by management and appropriate corrective actions will be completed. In addition, we provide a safety suggestion drop box located in the Dean’s office, ENG493, where employees and students can place suggestions or report any unsafe conditions, this can be done anonymously.

Safety Committee and Safety Meetings

Our College safety committee will be comprised of lab directors, technicians, and management. They will meet on a semesterly basis, and review the following:

  1. The IIPP for the College of Engineering
  2. Minutes of the previous meeting.
  3. Unfinished business of the previous meeting.
  4. Self-inspection reports.
  5. Discussion of accidents and corrective action taken.
  6. Accident trends.
  7. New and outstanding recommendations submitted by outside agencies (insurance carrier, fire department, Cal-OSHA, etc.)
  8. New business.

All meetings will be documented. Group safety meetings - Lab directors will be responsible for holding department safety meetings on a regular basis. Employee and student attendance and discussion topics will be documented.


Inspection is an important management tool and is an essential part of the hazard control process. We will view inspections as a fact-finding process, not fault-finding. We will emphasize locating potential hazards that can adversely affect safety and health. All personnel will be responsible for continuous, ongoing inspection of the workplace. When uncovered, potentially hazardous conditions will be corrected immediately or a report will be filed (see exhibit A) to initiate corrective action.

Monthly inspections will be made by members of the College Safety Office utilizing the College self-inspection form (See Exhibit B). The report will be reviewed by the Lab Directors and the Associate Dean and action will be taken to eliminate uncovered potential hazards. Assignments, target dates for completion, and actual completion dates will be documented.

Semesterly audits will be conducted once per semester by peer review. Members of the Safety Committee will be solicited to participate in the audits.


In addition to regularly scheduled inspections, hazard assessments will be completed when any of the following occur:

  1. When new substances, processes, or equipment which present potential new hazards are introduced into our workplace.
  2. When occupational injuries and illnesses occur.
  3. When we hire and or reassign permanent or intermittent workers to processes, operations or tasks for which a hazard evaluation has not been previously conducted.
  4. Whenever workplace conditions warrant an inspection.

It is the policy of San Jose State University College of Engineering to carry out a thorough program for accident investigations. Supervisory personnel will be primarily responsible for making an investigation of all accidents in their areas of responsibility. Accidents involving fire, death, serious injury or extensive property damage will be investigated jointly by the Supervisor, the Building and Safety Specialist, the Associate Dean, the Dean and the Personnel Manager.

The primary goal of the accident investigation program is the prevention of future similar accidents through the use of knowledge derived from the investigation. Additionally, the investigation will be used to prepare reports required by Federal and State laws as well as the Workers' Compensation Insurance Carrier. These reports are critical in establishing the College’s and the Lab Director’s liability under the law.

When an employee is injured at work, the lab director or supervisor on duty is responsible for taking emergency action to have first aid administered, to obtain professional medical attention as soon as possible, and protect other employees and equipment. The Lab Director must then begin to investigate the circumstances of the accident.

The following procedures have been found to be effective when investigating accidents and near miss accidents:

  1. GO to the scene of the accident at once.
  2. TALK with the injured person, if possible. Talk to witnesses. Stress getting the facts, not placing blame or responsibility. Ask open-ended questions.
  3. LISTEN for clues in the conversations around you. Unsolicited comments often have merit.
  4. ENCOURAGE people to give their ideas for preventing a similar accident.
  5. STUDY possible causes - unsafe conditions, unsafe practices.
  6. CONFER with interested persons about possible solutions.
  7. WRITE your accident report giving a complete, accurate account of the accident. If an employee is involved in the accident and it results in loss of work, a report must be filed [pdf] with the Workers Comp specialist within 24 hours. For more information, please review the Workers' Compensation Policy. For students or visitors that are involved in an accident, fill out the Student and Visitor Accident Report Risk Management [pdf] and review the Student and Visitor Accident Reporting Guidelines Risk Management [pdf]
  8. FOLLOW-UP to make sure unsafe conditions are corrected. If they cannot be corrected immediately, report this to your supervisor or Lab Director.
  9. PUBLICIZE corrective action taken so that all may benefit from the experience. In order for the Lab Director’s Report to be effective, it should contain as a minimum a detailed answer to the following questions:
    1. What Was The Employee Doing? - Explain in detail the activity of the employee at the time of the accident.
    2. What Happened? - Indicate in detail what took place, describe the accident, the type of injury, the part or parts of the body affected, and whether the employee was wearing appropriate safety equipment.
    3. What Caused the Accident? - Explain in detail the condition, act, malfunction, etc., that caused the accident. Remember that it is possible to have more than one reason or cause for an accident.
    4. What Can Be Done to Prevent a Similar Accident? - Indicate corrective action to prevent recurrence.

Unsafe or unhealthy work conditions, practices or procedures shall be corrected in a timely manner based on the severity of the hazards. Hazards shall be corrected according to the following procedures:

  1. When observed or discovered
  2. When an imminent hazard exists which cannot be immediately abated without endangering employee(s) and/or property, we will remove all exposed workers from the area except those necessary to correct the existing condition. workers necessary to correct the hazardous condition shall be provided with the necessary protection; and
  3. All such actions taken and dates they are completed shall be documented on the appropriate forms.

All workers, including managers and supervisors, shall have training and instruction on general and job-specific safety and health practices. Training and instruction shall be provided as follows:

  1. When the IIPP program is first established.
  2. To all new workers
  3. To all workers given new job assignments for which training has not previously provided;
  4. Whenever new substances, processes, procedures or equipment are introduced to the workplace and represent a new hazard
  5. Whenever management is made aware of a new or previously unrecognized hazard.
  6. To supervisors to familiarize them with the safety and health hazards to which workers under their immediate direction and control may be exposed; and
  7. To all workers with respect to hazards specific to each employee’s job assignment.

The Lab Director is responsible for administering safety training in his/her facility.

Disciplinary Procedures

Employees and student employees who fail to comply with safety rules may be subject to progressive disciplinary action up to and including termination or suspension. 

Lab Directors who fail to maintain high standards of safety within their departments may be removed from their directorship after three documented warnings have been levied during any calendar year. Departments who are unable to maintain safe operation of facilities may have the facility removed from their jurisdiction. 

Lab environments that are deemed unsafe will be shut down until safe operation can be ensured.

Our establishment is on a high hazard industry list. We have taken the following steps to implement and maintain our IIP Program

  1. Records of hazard assessment inspections and audits, including the person(s) or persons conducting the inspection, the unsafe conditions and work practices that have been identified and the action taken to correct the identified unsafe conditions and work practices, are recorded on a hazard assessment and correction form; and
  2. Documentation of safety and health training for each worker, including the worker’s name or other identifier, training dates, type(s) of training, and training providers are recorded on a worker training and instruction form.

Inspection records and training documentation will be maintained in perpetuity, except for training records of employees who have worked for less than one year which are provided to the worker upon termination of employment. Additional records are as follows:

  • Records of training courses completed in Skillport will be retained in the Skillport records.
  • Records of safety training completion for each facility will be kept by the Lab Director.
  • Minutes from Mandatory Lab Safety Meetings and any auxiliary meetings will be kept by the Building and Safety Specialist.
  • Records will be kept in online in a shared drives as well as hard copies in ENG186A, the office of the Building and Safety Specialist.

Hazard Communication Program

The management of San Jose State University College of Engineering is committed to preventing accidents and ensuring the safety and health of our students and employees. We will comply with all applicable federal and state health and safety rules. Under this program employees and students are informed of the contents of the OSHA Hazard Communications Standard, the hazardous properties of chemicals with which they work, safe handling procedures and measures to take to protect themselves from these chemicals. These chemicals may be physical or health-related. This written hazard communication plan is available at the following location for review by all students and employees: (On the front door of all chemical containing laboratories.)

View/download the Hazard Communication Program [pdf]

View/download the Laser Safety Plan [pdf]

View/download the Chemical Hygiene Plan [pdf]


Safety Committee Meetings