June 2014

UNSW has become officially smoke-free, as of 31 May 2014. UNSW Safety and Sustainability hosted a stall outside UNSW Library to promote the new policy, see article below. Also in this edition we have a quick interview with a health and safety representative. Last month we asked you for feedback on the UNSW Health and Safety website, thanks to everyone who responded, we received over 100 responses. 

Prof Chris Winder

Many in the health and safety community will be saddened to hear of the passing of Prof Chris Winder, who was a Professor in Toxicology and Occupational Health at the UNSW School of Risk and Safety Sciences and later, Professor in Toxicology and Occupational Health, and Academic Coordinator of the OHS programs at the Australian Catholic University.

Chris worked in Toxicology since 1979 and in OHS since 1985. He was heavily involved with the development of the Australian Standards OHS management systems AS4801 and AS4804, and in the National Industrial Chemicals Notification Assessment Scheme (NICNAS).

He will be sadly missed, but cheerfully remembered, by those who knew him personally and professionally, as a friend, teacher and colleague.


First aid & AED

A draft First Aid procedure is now available for consultation, please refer to the Governance Support website to access the draft and associated documents. This procedure outlines recommended numbers of first aiders, first aid kit content, maintenance and training. If you have any feedback contact by 20 June.

The Automated External Defibrillator (AED) Guideline has finished consultation; the guideline, online training, advice on purchasing and FAQ's are available on the AED information page.


Smoke-free UNSW

UNSW officially became smoke-free on 31 May 2014 coinciding with the World No Tobacco Day. The new Smoke-Free Environment Policy is now applicable to all University grounds including vehicles. Enforcement relies on persuasion and encouragement by the whole UNSW community. If you encounter someone smoking on campus remind them of the policy and politely ask them to stop or move off campus. 

UNSW Safety and Sustainability hosted a stall outside the Library on Thursday 29 May to promote the new policy and to provide the UNSW community an opportunity to freely express their views. Hundreds of students and staff stopped to chat and showed overwhelming support for this initiative. Over 150 staff and students also provided written comments, of which only 3 were not happy with the smoking ban. For further information about this policy visit UNSW Sustainability website.


SciQuest ERM update

A lot has happened since Enterprise Reagent Manager (ERM) first undertook its User Acceptance Testing (UAT) in November last year. This new chemical inventory system now has over 400 registered users in the UNSW live site. Thanks to UNSW Chemistry who got off to a flying start, driven by a relentless Pall Thordarson! Chemistry users have helped iron out some of those usual teething problems that come with a new system, so new schools coming on board should have a smooth run.

Eight of the ten laboratory supplier catalogues have been loaded, so that orders for chemicals can be placed within ERM. IT procurement has worked to secure best deals for bar-code printers, scanners and bar-code software licenses.

The ERM online training course is now ready for enrolment and is mandatory for all users.

The ERM information page has been updated with easy to follow cheat sheets, guides, templates and a data utility which can cleanse data and prepare it for direct data import.

For more detailed information, see this ERM update


New maintenance contractor

Following the conclusion of a thorough tender process in 2013, the UNSW Building Services Maintenance Contract was awarded to Brookfield Johnson Controls, who officially took up the contract on 1 June 2014.

Spotless, the previous contractor will continue to have a presence on campus until approximately the end of June, as they wind up their activities.

The procedure for logging maintenance service requests remain unchanged:
  • Log the request through Archibus
  • Contact FM Assist by email at or Ext. 55111
  • For urgent repairs after hours contact UNSW Security on Ext. 56666
If you have any queries specific to your operations or equipment, please contact your Client Facilities Manager (CFM). If you have any general queries about the new maintenance contract or the transition from Spotless to Brookfield Johnson Controls, please contact Greg Kaplan on

ChemAlert changes

ChemAlert, the system for accessing online chemical Safety Data Sheets, has upgraded (to version 4) and is now available:

The new version has a more streamlined view and easily navigable options. When you open ChemAlert choose "Anonymous user", this will bring you to a new screen. Choose "Search" to take you to the new version. If you prefer the old version choose "ChemAlert".


AQIS changes

What used to be the Australian Quarantine and Inspection Service (AQIS) was merged into the Department of Agriculture, Fishers and Forestry (DAFF) which recently changed name to Department of Agriculture.

In May the email address for the department changed from to 

AQIS permit is now an Import Permit; refer to the Biological Import Program. From July there will be new rates of charge for a number of bio-security services. For more information refer to the department's biological fee review.


Health and safety representatives

Health and safety representatives have a number of functions which they may carry out at the workplace, such as:
  • Inspect the area where their work group works.
  • Receive work health and safety information.
  • Confer with UNSW on health and safety matters.
  • Participate in all health and safety matters that affect their work group.
  • Request assistance from WorkCover where the issue resolution process has been unsuccessful.
If a Health and Safety Representative identifies an issue this must be dealt with following the informal issue resolution process in the first instance. If this is not successful then the formal issue resolution process should be followed. This is detailed in the UNSW Health and Safety Issue Resolution Procedure.


A minute with...

Bea Kunic, EA to General Manager of Engineering Faculty and Health and Safety Committee representative

Why did you decide to become a representative? I am often a first point of contact for the faculty and thought it would be a good opportunity to be a go-to person for a good cause.

What hazards does your committee address? Anything from slips, hazardous substances or incorrect lifting.

What do you like about being a representative? Being part of a group that assists the University in being a safer working environment. I also enjoy hearing about things that happen around the uni, sometimes we get gnarly stories that sound so outlandish they freak you out.

What initiatives are the committee working on? Maintaining a close relationship with FM and the builders working on the construction at mid campus; ventilation in labs; and ensuring emergency exits aren't obstructed.


Lessons learnt

A visitor to one of our food courts was injured recently when she slipped on some food on the floor. UNSW employs cleaning staff to maintain these area and to respond to food and beverage spills upon sighting or when notified.

How can you make a difference?
Everyone can assist in preventing falls caused by spilled food and drink by taking care when carrying food items, use lids on drink containers and if you drop something, pick it up yourself. You should notify cleaning staff in the area immediately if you can't attend to a spill. We all have a responsibility in maintaining a safe campus and your quick action can help prevent future injuries.


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