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COVID-19 Emergency Preparedness Plan Assistance

 

(Last Updated: April 2, 2020)

The university is currently conducting essential research and lab activities on-campus only. Researchers will not be allowed to access their lab spaces unless classified as essential research and approved by Risk Management.  
Laboratories who are continuing to function must follow public health recommendations:
  • All laboratory rules and procedures to be followed
  • practice proper hygiene (wash your hands, cough or sneeze into a tissue or the bend of your arm,dispose of any tissues you have used as soon as possible in a lined waste basket and wash your hands afterwards)
  • maintain physical distancing of at least 2 metres,
  • avoid crowding and non-essential gatherings while working,
  • no more than 5 people for essential gatherings,
  • avoid common touch greetings, such as handshakes,
  • stay home if you are ill.
Essential lab personnel should also keep in mind the following:

 

Stay Current

Plan Ahead

Specialized Labs

 Biosafety Laboratories

  • Announced University Extended Closure: Once a closure is announced all on-going experiments must cease so that the biological hazards will not present a danger.  Please anticipate contingency plans for biological agents that are being cultured and require ongoing maintenance.  Follow the procedures found on the Extended Closure of Research Laboratory webpage and complete the Laboratory Ramp Down ChecklistNote: biological agents are not authorized to be transferred off-campus without prior approval from the Biosafety Committee.
  • Storage: Biological agents must be kept in labelled locked storage equipment within commissioned areas listed on your Biosafety Permit. 
  • Equipment:  Non-essential servicing of equipment will not be possible during a shut-down.  Permit Holders should arrange contingency plans for any equipment that requires ongoing maintenance. 
  • Inventory: Inventory of biological agents must be accounted for and re-inventoried once a university-wide shut down has ended.
  • Shipping/Receiving: As of March 15th, 2020, all new shipments of biological agents are postponed until after the extended closure.  No biological agents are permitted off-campus unless approved by the appropriate Safety Committee.  Please contact the Biosafety and Radiation Safety Officer if there are any issues (i.e. time-sensitive samples).
  • Eyewash and Shower Testing: Weekly emergency safety eyewash testing and emergency safety shower testing can be suspended if authorized users are not present in the lab. The extended closure should be noted on the inspection checklist sheet.
  • Biosafety Emergency: In the event of a biosafety emergency during a university-wide shut down, the Biosafety Officer (BSO) will still be available by email or cell phone: 416.818.6440.  Ensure all of the posted emergency contact information in your lab is is up-to-date.
  • Biosafety Information: For more information, please see the biosafety manual or reach out to the BSO, Francis, at ext. 6316 or francis.arnaldo@uoit.ca.

 Radiation, X-Ray, and Laser Laboratories

  • Announced University Extended Closure: Once a extended closure is announced all on-going experiments must cease so that the radiological hazards will not present a danger.  Follow the procedures found on the Extended Closure of Research Laboratory webpage and complete the Laboratory Ramp Down ChecklistNote: radioactive sources are not authorized to be transferred off-campus without prior approval from the Radiation Safety Committee.
  • Storage:  Radioactive sources must be kept in labelled locked storage equipment within radiation areas listed on your Radiation Safety Permit. 
  • Equipment: Permit Holders should leave their nuclear / X-ray / laser instruments in a condition (e.g. turned off) so that they cannot be used or accessed during a shut down.  Non-essential servicing of equipment will not be possible during a shut-down.  Permit Holders should arrange contingency plans for any equipment that requires ongoing maintenance. 
  • Inventory: Inventory of radioactive sources must be accounted for and re-inventoried once a university-wide shut down has ended.
  • Shipping/Receiving: As of March 15th, 2020, all new shipments of radioactive sources are postponed until after the extended closure.  No radiological sources are permitted off-campus unless approved by the appropriate Safety Committee.  Please contact the Biosafety and Radiation Safety Officer if there are any issues (i.e. time-sensitive samples)
  • Eyewash and Shower Testing: Weekly emergency safety eyewash testing and emergency safety shower testing can be suspended if authorized users are not present in the lab.  The extended closure should be noted on the inspection checklist sheet.
  • Radiation Safety Emergency: In the event of a radiation emergency during a university-wide shut down, the Radiation Safety Officer (RSO) will still be available by email or cell phone: 416.818.6440.  Ensure all of the posted emergency contact information in your lab is is up-to-date.
  • Radiation Safety Information: For more information, please see the radiation safety manual or reach out to the RSO, Francis, at ext. 6316 or francis.arnaldo@uoit.ca.

Accessing Laboratory Spaces During a Period of Essential Research and Lab Activites Only On-campus

Unless classified as essential or critical research, researchers will not have access to their research laboratory space.  Approval must be given by Risk Management.  The procedure to be classified as essential or critical research can be found on the Extended Closure of Research Laboratories webpage.

If You Are Essential Research Personnel: 

You must follow public health recommendations while working on campus:

  • practice proper hygiene (wash your hands, cough or sneeze into a tissue or the bend of your arm, dispose of any tissues you have used as soon as possible in a lined waste basket and wash your hands afterwards)
  • maintain physical distancing of at least 2 metres,
  • avoid crowding and non-essential gatherings while working,
  • no more than 5 people for essential gatherings,
  • avoid common touch greetings, such as handshakes,
  • stay home if you are ill,
  • follow all laboratory rules and procedures

You must also follow the check-in/check-out rules of the university, found on the main COVID-19 update webpage.

Transitioning Back to Normal Operations

Once it is announced that the university is transitioning back to normal operations, please follow the procedures found on the Extended Closure of Research Laboratories webpage.