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Health and Safety

Departmment of Astronomy & Astrophysics Health and Safety Web Page

  1. Introduction
  2. Astro Health and Safety Guide
  3. Astro Information for Emergency Response
  4. Other Resources

1. Introduction

Welcome to the Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics! The department strives to provide an excellent working, research and enducational environment. Moreover, the department is committed to the health and safety of our faculty, staff, students and visitors. As a result, a Joint Health and Safety Committee was established to identify and resolve these safety concerns within our working environment.

To assist you to understand the health and safety policies and procedures, our Committee has developed this webpage. It is tended to provide a reference point with relavent information regarding health and safetty for the department. Continuous effort will be put in to improve and update the informaton on this page.

Safety is the repsonsibility of everyone in the department. The faculty members and supervisors are directly responsible for safety in labs, telescope sites and various offices. We encourage them to be proactive in directing their staff for proper training, when necessary, and aquiring knowledge via self study. They should also ensure the implementation of annual auditing recomendation by the Health and Safety Committee and promptly rectify issues identified.

The Health and Safety Committee welcome concerns, quesitons and suggestions. With our combined effort, we will make the department a healthy and safe place to work and study.

The Health and Safety Committee

2. Astro Health and Safety Guide

2.1 The Legislation

The Occupational Health and Safety Act of Ontario is the primary legislation governing workplace safety. Its purpose is to protect all employees by outlining the legal responsibilities of both the employer and employee to identify and resolve safety issues. This internal responsibility system involves all employees within the University from the President and governing bodies to the individual worker. Supervisors and workers should be familiar with the main provisions of the Act and the regulations which apply to their workplaces.

2.2 Astro Health and Safety Committee

Fucntions of Health and Safety Committee

The Committee has the following principal functions:

  • To identify and evaluate potential health and safety hazards
  • To recommend corrective action
  • To provide input to University health and safety programs
  • To inspect the workplace on a regular basis

The Committee will look after the astro offices in the following three locations:

  • The Astronomy Building (AB)
  • The Astronomy offices at MP (12th, 13th, 15th, and 16th floors)
  • High Bay - STIS (stratospheric telescope integration facility)

Joint Health and Safety Committee Members:

Name Room # Phone Email
  Hugh Zhao, (Co-Chair) AB130
946-7286  zhao<at>
  Alice Chow, Secretary
978-3356 chow<at>
  Dae-Sik Moon, Faculty Rep
978-6566 moon<at>
  Ronald Gagne, Grad Rep
978-7123  rcgane<at>
  Angela Choi (Co-Chair)
978-3149 choi<at>
  Michael WilliamsAB213


  Gautam Patel AB101D946-7119 patel<at>

Health and Safety Minutes:

May 12, 2009

2.3 Resolving Health and Safety Concerns

Here are some of the ways to resolve issues concerning Health and Safty.
  1. Inform your immediate supervisor.
    Your supervisor will work with you to resolve your concern while he/she can. Your supervisor may also take the next step 2.
  2. Refer the issue to the Joint Health and Safety Committee.
    The committee can look into the matter and make recommendations to the department or university authorities for resolution.
  3. At any time, employees can refuse to conduct any unsafe work. Your supervisor is required to follow the procedures outlined under the Ontario Health and Safety Act.

3. Astro Information for Emergency Response

3.1 Emergency Contact Information

We include here some emergency contacts and phone numbers within the department as well as the university.



Campus Emergency Centre – St. George Campus


Metro Toronto Emergency Phone Number


TDD Telephone for the Deaf Only



Main Office



Department Manager



H and S Committee Chair

Other University Contacts:

Health & Wellbeing Programmes & Services - 263 McCaul St., 2nd Floor


6-58732nd Floor

WSIB Administrator


2nd Floor

Occupational Health Service


2nd Floor

Environmental Protection Services
(Hazardous Materials) 215 Huron St. 7th Floor



Chemical Waste Technicians


Radiation Service Technicians


Radiation Protection Section - 215 Huron St., 7th Floor

Chief Radiation Protection Officer


Radiation Protection Officers (Licensing and Training)


Radiation Safety Officers


Fire Protection Services - 215 Huron St., 7th Floor

Fire Protection Officer



3.2 First Aid and Eyewash Stations

 First aid kits are located at the following spots:

AB Building:
1st floor, AB101-J (Mail Room)
2nd floor, AB201 (Astro Lounge)
Basement, AB60 (Lab with Laser Warning)
Basement, AB55 (Dae-Sik's Lab)
Basement, AB73B (Lab with crane and workshop)
Basement, AB79 (Planetarium)

MP Building:
12th floor, MP1212B (Printer Room)
13th floor, MP1306 (Library)
15th floor (Library Archive)
16th floor (The Dome)

High Bay: Ground Floor and 3rd floor

Eyewash stations:
  • AB: basement corridor beside Lab AB60, and inside Lab AB73.
  • MP: at various locations at the basement level
  • High Bay: none
  • 3.3 Fire Evacuation Procedures

    When fire alarm sounds:
    1. EVACUATE the building immediately. This is MANDATORY by University Policy.
    2. DO NOT use elevators, use the stairs instead.
    3. KEEP CLEAR of the building to permit emergency access.
    4. DO NOT RE-ENTER until authorized by Fire or Police Personnel.
    5. FOR MOBILITY-IMPAIRED persons phone 416-978-2222 for assistance

    3.4 University Emergency Alert System

    The Univesity has established an emergency alert system, you can register your mobile phone number at:

    3.5 Personnel Safety and Security

    In addition to University police, the University also offers the Walksafer program which provides campus escorts to all employees, students and visitors after dark. For more information, please visit:
    WalkSafer website

    3.6 Astro First Aid and CPR Help

    On very rare occasions, if there is a need for first aid and/or CPR, we have a team of dedicated volunteers, who either have past experience or are currently certified, willing to help. On behalf of the department, we want to thank them for agreeing to be listed here.

    Lillian Lanca, AB101
    Pedro Molina, High Bay
    Eve Lee, MP1405

    4. Other Resoureces

    The University also has a website for Environmental Health and Safety which provides more information pertaining to the specifics of university and beyond.

    The department posts various health and safety information on various bulletin board. Please check them out from time to time.