School of Physics WHS

Workplace, health and safety
Guidelines, procedures and contacts relating to workplace health and safety.

In January 2012 the Workplace Health and Safety (WHS) Act was introduced, replacing the Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Act (2000). The School's WHS procedures, which are developed and reviewed by the School Safety Committee and approved by the Head of School, are based on both the new WHS legislation and the University's WHS policies. Our procedures consist of two key elements:

1) Environmental guidelines
2) Hazard guidelines

Together, these guidelines define the roles and responsibilities for all staff, students and affiliates that conduct business on behalf of the School as well as provide advice and guidance for common hazards.

Under the School's environmental guidelines, there must be a staff member who has overall management and therefore WHS responsibility for each "environment" (an office, laboratory, extramural site or workshop etc). People with management authority may appoint WHS delegates to undertake WHS activities on their behalf but they (managers) still retain overall WHS responsibility. A list of School environments and staff who have WHS responsibilities can be found here.

Managers and WHS delegates are ultimately responsible for conducting risk management activities. In addition, they are responsible for creating and reviewing induction and training documentation and for ensuring the relevant inductions and training activities are undertaken. The School's hazard guidelines describe and suggest ways to mitigate common hazards and specify minimum requirements for working with these hazards. These guidelines should be referred to when conducting risk management activities.

WHS environmental guidelines

An environment is any place where personnel conduct business on behalf of the School. This includes offices, teaching spaces, research laboratories and extramural sites such as hospitals and overseas research institutions. All School environments can be classified into one of the below categories:

1) Office Environment
2) Laboratory or Technical Environment
3) Extramural Environment

Environmental guidelines detail the WHS responsibilities and processes for all personnel conducting business on behalf of the School.

A list of School environments and staff who have WHS responsibility can be found here.

Identifiying and managing hazards

A Guide for Managers and Laboratory Area Supervisors

If you are responsible for management, or are nominated as an Area Supervisor of a Laboratory, you are required by law to identify the hazards and hazardous jobs in that area, to conduct a risk assessment, and to develop ways to eliminate or manage those risks.

The guidelines below have been identified by the School Safety Committee to help you identify hazards and recommend ways to reduce the risks associated with them. Combined with your own expertise and consultation, the tables within these guidelines can be used to help you.

If you require any assistance, contact the School Safety Officer.

After Hours Work
Electrical Work
Liquefied Gases
Compressed Gases
Tools & Machinery

Staff member to be contacted in an emergency

First Aid Officers Department Phone email Location
Mr Brian Ford Technical 9351 5475 Room 421/419, Physics A28
Dr Simon Murphy SIfA 9036 5104 Room 359B, Physics A28
Mr Aaron Loy Student Services
8627 7584
Room 211, Physics A28
Rayner Moss Technical 0468 357 128 Room 410, Physics A28
Safety Officers Role Phone Mobile email Location
David Beech Safety Officer 9351 2554 0434 561997 Room 234, Physics A28
A/Prof. Joe Khachan Radiation Safety 9351 2713 0438 252768 Room 219b, Physics A28

Location of First Aid Kits & Defibrillators

A28 - Main Physics Building
Defibrillators: Main Foyer, Level 2 and Physics Reception, Level 2
First aid kits: 116, 121a, 212, 216, 218, 242/3, 228/9, 231, outside 301, 327, 328, 338, outside 357, 404, 410, 412, 419

F07 - Carslaw
First aid kits: 177, 407 

School Safety Committee

The committee provides advice to the Head of School on issues relating to work health health and safety matters within the School of Physics. It develops and maintains environmental and hazard guidelines.

The School Safety Officer, who is a member of the Safety Committee, is responsible to the Head of School on a day-to-day basis for operational matters regarding occupational health and safety.

  • Head of School
  • Professor David McKenzie (Chair)
  • David Beech (School Safety Officer)
  • Annalee Powell (Committee Officer)
  • Dr Sergio Leon-Saval (Laser Safety Officer)
  • Leigh Grant
  • Enyi Guo (HDR student representative)
  • Oliver Lotz (HDR student representative)
  • Dr Behnam Akhavan
  • Laura Parker
  • Brian Ford
  • Ashmeeta Kumar (University Workplace Health and Safety Advisor)
  • Matthew Day (Science Faculty Safety Administration Coordinator)
  • Jennifer Hollingshed (Science Faculty Safety Administrator)