Risk Management Assessment

Under the University’s Health and Safety Policy as well as the Occupational Health and Safety Act, the supervisor is responsible and accountable for the health and safety of all workers under their direction and the workplaces under their charge. The supervisor is responsible for advising individuals under their direction about the existence of potential or actual workplace hazards and to ensure the individuals are trained and will work safely.

It is advised that all ROP supervisors conduct a risk assessment of any actual or potential hazards that the students may be exposed to. After the hazards have been identified, the students need to be properly trained on the appropriate work practices, procedures, what to do in case in an emergency, the use of any personal protective equipment, etc. This training should always be documented and kept on file.

If it is deemed by the supervisor that it is not hazardous to leave students unattended/unsupervised based on the risk assessment, and the students have been properly trained on what to do in case of an emergency and all other relevant procedures, the supervisor may not warrant supervision on a day-to-day basis.

For students working in a lab where there are chemicals, sharp objects, open flames, specialized equipment, etc. the appropriate training and supervision is required due to the increased risk that that hazards pose in this type of laboratory environment. A risk assessment and training is required.

For students working under a “dry” lab setting, if the work involves the use of a computer and/or standardized office supplies (similar to a general office setting) which has a very low risk in terms of hazard, the need for direct supervision is low. However, it is important to consider the type of work that will be performed and if there will be any changes to the nature of the hazards over time that may need to be addressed through additional training or supervision. A risk assessment and training is required.

Visit the Office of Environmental Health and Safety website for a training matrix for lab and non-lab personnel, listing the training that is required based on the type of activity/hazard individuals are exposed: