University of Cambridge Computer Laboratory

Health and Safety Committee


Chairman: Dr P Brooks                                                                        Secretary: Mrs L Heptonstall


Minutes of a meeting of the Health and Safety Committee held at 14.15 on Wednesday 15th December 2004 in Room GC22, William Gates Building.

Present:            Dr P Brooks                             Mrs C Matthews

                        Mrs L Heptonstall                     Mr M McDonnell                    

                        Mr A Brown                            Mrs M Levitt                           

                        Mrs R Moss                             Mrs A Barreto             

                        Mrs F Billingsley                       Mr A Wonfor

                        Mr D Cottingham                     Dr M Kuhn


1.      Minutes of the last meeting


1.1 The minutes of the meeting held on the 17th November were approved and signed.


2.      Matters arising from the Minutes



3.   Correspondence


3.1 AB reported that he is dealing with EMBS re replacing the front door. He informed the committee that they do not see this as a priority so progress is slow. He will inform us of any changes.


3.2 Head of Department has confirmed that senior management team will no longer meet, so Health and Safety matters will be passed to the syndicate. All minutes since the last syndicate meeting are to be sent. PB will be writing a summary and requested input from the committee. The next meeting will be on the 25th January.


3.3 The department has been informed of a food handling course that is taking place at the Cavendish Lab in January. There are a number of places available which people from the lab are able to attend if they wish.


4   First Aid and Accidents


4.1 Four new accident report forms have been received;


NRO47 – A member of staff came to the First Aider reporting feeling of dizziness and nausea. Her hands were cold and fingers felt numb and she had problems speaking. First Aiders tried to calm her down and reassure her. After 10 minutes could be left alone but checked on every 15 minutes and was advised not to drive home. First Aiders felt it may have been exacerbated by anxiety over some hospital test results.


NRO48 – A member of the lab injured themselves while working on floor tiles. First Aid was administered but no need for follow up. Department is investigating if there are better floor lifters available.


NRO49 – A student needed first aid after bumping into a closed door and cutting his eye. Purely human error.


NR050 – A member of the lab was found collapsed in the cycle storage area. Suspected that an heart related incident caused him to collapse. Was found to be not breathing so the First Aiders attending asked for an ambulance to be called and then administered CPR until the paramedics arrived. Two members of staff accompanied his wife to hospital, where he was declared dead.


4.2 Repercussions of incident NR050.


4.2 (a) This prompted a review of how we respond to serious incidents and it was agreed by all parties that everything went smoothly and the committee expressed their gratitude.


4.2 (b) PB confirmed that JJ Thomson Avenue was now listed on the ambulance database.


4.2 (c) It was reported that Building Services had done a good job of the clear up of the area.


4.2 (d) PB confirmed that he had sought advice from the DSO at physics, the West Cambridge First Aid Group Leader, and the Safety Office. The SO requested that occupational health also be informed, who asked that personnel department be informed, who asked that Pensions be informed.


4.2 (e) Will Hudson happened to be onsite the day after the incident, and has been in touch since the incident to make sure everyone involved was okay. PB informed the group that many forms of counselling are available.


4.2 (f) AAB asked if it was our responsibility to inform security if any ambulances are called in the future, it was confirmed that it should be receptions duty and a checklist of what to do when calling an ambulance should be made and put up, not only in reception but all throughout the building. It was decided that all First Aid notices were to be updated with these instructions as not everyone knew how to dial for an ambulance from office telephones.

                                                                                                                        ACTION LH/PB


4.2 (g) A member of the committee also questioned whether first aiders or an ambulance should be called first and it was confirmed First Aiders should be the first called to an incident. They can then assess the situation and if the casualty was not breathing, an ambulance would be called straight away.


4.3 The West Cambridge Site First Aid group leader on site has provided a list of all first aiders on site and this has been made available to all First Aiders in the building.


4.4 One of the departments’ first aid certificates has lapsed due to only being given a week’s notice to renew and book her refreshment course. This has now been done and she will be retraining in January.


4.5 It has been confirmed that The University will not be providing Automatic External Defibrillators as their maintenance and the required training are too expensive.


5.  Workplace Assessments 


5.1 PB reported to the group that a user who expressed discomfort in the wrist which, was suspected as due to the keyboard she was using, has said that his pain has decreased due to using a Natural Keyboard that the Lab provided.


6 Fire


6.1 It was confirmed that a letter has now been sent to the FSO informing them of Martin McDonnell being our new FSM.


6.2 PB confirmed that he has requested a new date for the Evac Chair training to take place, but is still waiting to hear back.        


7. Building Matters

7.1   AB reported that it has been confirmed that the problem with the shower door is with the whole design not just the hinge.


7.2 AB has costing for different grades and thickness of transparent sheets for use in making the upper floors child accessible. These were reported to be very expensive but Archie is waiting final costing. He also expressed concern that this material could snap or break easily, and has been recommended that toughened glass would be more suitable, but again more expensive. Any suggestions from the group are welcome.


7.3 It was confirmed that the new window cleaning company were following all Heath and Safety procedures as required.


7.4 There were no H&S matters raised at the last Building Users meeting.


8. West Cambridge Site


8.1 AB has spoken to Andrew Gordon about new signage to the haul road but no response as yet. PB reported that a Beware of Cyclist sign is up but no “Stop” sign or speed limit signs are up.


8.2  The chicane by haul road is felt no longer to be a H&S concern, and should be taken up by some other meeting. It was noted that it has been painted.


9. Any Other Business


9.1 PB informed the committee that the final draft of the Safety Audit has now been accepted.


Dates of the future meetings:
The next meeting will be on the 12th January. Please note that the February 2005 meeting is cancelled due to staff absences and shortage of meeting rooms.