1st Quarter 2016 – Disability Awareness & Effective Communication

More than 54 million Americans have a disability. The Americans with Disabilities ACT (ADA) of 1990 was conceived with the goal of integrating people with disabilities into all aspects of life, particularly the workplace and marketplace. Sensitivity towards people with disabilities is the spirit of the ADA and when we are disability aware and use disability etiquette, co-workers, employees and students with disabilities feel more comfortable and work more productively. Practicing disability etiquette is an easy way to make people with disabilities feel welcome.

You don’t have to feel awkward when communicating with a person with a disability. The attached Power Point presentation provides some basic tips for you to follow. If you have any questions or concerns please contact Robin Bell, Director of Disability Services at 448-4430.

Disability awareness and effective communication(2)

4th Quarter 2015 – Safety Rules

Safety Rules 

  1. Observe and follow all posted safety notices.
  2. The use of any tobacco product in any form is prohibited on all Nicholls State University properties including the main campus, Duhe Building, Chauvin Gardens, etc.
  3. No fighting or horseplay allowed in the work area or classroom.
  4. Know where fire extinguishers are located and how to use them.
  5. Evacuate in an orderly manner if the fire alarm sounds.
  6. Know designated evacuation routes from your floor and building.
  7. Know emergency phone numbers or access to them.
  8. Report all injuries and accidents to your supervisor.
  9. Report to your supervisor any equipment that is not operating properly.
  10. Do not run in the work area.
  11. Report unsafe conditions to your supervisor.
  12. Do not throw objects in the work area.
  13. Keep your work station clean and orderly.
  14. Keep floor free of litter.
  15. Place litter and waste materials in proper containers.
  16. Do not walk on wet floors and immediately wipe up spills.
  17. Keep passageway clear to allow easy access and exit.
  18. Keep desk, filing drawers, etc. closed to avoid hazards to those walking by.
  19. Return equipment and material to their proper place after use.
  20. Report lighting and ventilation problems affecting you to your immediate supervisor.
  21. Always read labels before using chemicals, bleaches, cleaning fluid, etc. that could be harmful if spilled.
  22. When working with hazardous chemicals, do not work alone.
  23. Use only approved cleaning fluids when cleaning machinery. Remember to allow for proper ventilation. Dispose of rags and waste material in proper containers and away from heat.
  24. Do not operate machines or equipment without proper training.
  25. Never leave a machine or equipment in operation unattended. Turn machine and equipment off before leaving the office at the end of the workday.
  26. Neckties, scarves and other wearing apparel should be secured when working around equipment.
  27. Notify your supervisor of any breakage or malfunction of machinery or equipment.
  28. Wear eye protection, respirators, or protective clothing in regulated areas or during functions requiring protective gear.
  29. Report frayed electrical cords immediately.
  30. Tape temporary electrical cords to the floor to prevent tripping.
  31. Do not overload electrical circuits.
  32. Do not use electrical extension cords as a permanent electrical line.
  33. Never turn on an electrical switch unless you know what it operates and have had the adequate training on that piece of equipment.
  34. Do not attempt to repair electrical devices unless properly trained to do so. Otherwise, report it to a supervisor.
  35. Keep flammable items away from electrical outlets, cords or other electrical apparatus.
  36. Use only properly grounded electrical equipment.
  37. When using university vehicles or your own vehicle for authorized travel, remember to use your seat belts and drive defensively.
  38. Only authorized drivers allowed to operate state vehicles or personal vehicles for state business.
  39. Do not text and drive.

These listed safety rules are not totally inclusive. They are intended as a guide to develop proper health and safety practices and procedures. Should you have questions or doubts about safe operations in the workplace, please contact your supervisor or the Safety Officer. Nicholls State University wants to provide a safe and healthy work and academic environment for its students, faculty and staff.

 

 

2014 Annual Fire Safety Report

Nicholls State University

2014

Annual Fire Safety Report

Introduction:

The Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008 requires institutions maintaining on-campus student housing to issue an annual fire safety report.  The Nicholls State University Environmental Health and Safety Department is responsible for creating the annual report.  The Environmental Health and Safety Department maintains the campus housing fire log and reports fire statistics annually in conjunction with the “Annual Crime Report” that provides information in compliance with the Jeanne Clery Disclosure of Campus Security Policy and Campus Security Crime Statistics Act.

The information contained in this report includes; statistics regarding the number and causes of fire, number of fire injuries and deaths, and the value of property damage.  The fire log entry, or an addition to an entry, shall be made within two business days of the receipt of information.  The fire log for the most recent 60-day period shall be open to public inspection during normal business hours.  Any portion of the log older than 60 days will be available within two business days of a request for public inspection. An electronic version of the Fire Logs and Annual Fire Report can be found at www.nicholls.edu/safety.  Information on each on-campus student housing fire safety systems, the number of regular mandatory fire drills, fire safety policies, education programs, as well as plans for any needed fire safety improvements is included.

Fire Statistics:

In 2014, Nicholls State University had two reportable fires.  See table below:

Year Total # of Housing Facility Fires Cause/Type # of Injuries # of Deaths Property Damage in Dollars
2014 2 See Below 0 0 See Below

 

Fire Log:

2014

Resident Facilities

Date Time Cause/Type of Fire # of Injuries Requiring Medical Treatment # of Deaths Related to a Fire Property Damage in Dollars Case Number
Millet Hall 2/04 3:31 PM Cooking/Microwave 0 0 0 NA
Ellender  Hall 3/08 10:23 PM Cooking/Cooking Oil 0 0 0 2014-00071

Case Number:

No case opened – On 2/4/2014, the fire alarm at Millet Hall sounded causing an evacuation of the entire building.  Nicholls State Police along with Environmental Safety & Health personnel responded to the scene.  No emergency fire personnel were needed to respond.  The investigation revealed that a student had tried to microwave a container of macaroni and cheese.  It appears as if the student did not add the required water prior to cooking, resulting in the dish of macaroni and cheese to burn.  Once the student opened up her room door to vent the smoke out, the general smoke alarm located in the hallway sounded the fire alarm.  The smoke was quickly cleared from the area and alarm system reset.

Case # 2014-00071.  On 3/8/2014, while students were attempting to fry fish in a small skillet, a small cooking oil fire ignited.  Statements from the students were taken by University Police, where they stated that the fire began from some oil that had previously been spilled on the electric burner, and not from oil running over the small skillet.  The Guardian Fire Suppressant system was activated immediately extinguishing the small fire.  No injuries or damage was reported.

Definitions:[i]

Fire: Any instance of open flame or other burning in a place not intended to contain the burning or in       an uncontrolled manner.

Fire Drill: A supervised practice of a mandatory evacuation of a building for a fire.

Fire-related Injury: Any instance in which a person is injured as a result of a fire, including an injury sustained from a natural or accidental cause while involved in fire control, attempting rescue, or escaping from the dangers of the fire.  The term person may include students, faculty, staff, visitors, firefighters, or any other individuals.

Fire-related Death: Any instance in which a person is killed as a result of a fire, including death resulting from a natural or accidental cause while involved in fire control, attempting rescue, or escaping from the dangers of a fire.  Dies within 1 year of injuries sustained as a result of the fire.

Fire Safety System: Any mechanism or system related to the detection of a fire including-

  • Sprinkler or other fire extinguishing systems;
  • Fire detection devices;
  • Stand-alone smoke alarms;
  • Devices that alert one to the presence of a fire, such as horns, bells, or strobe lights;
  • Smoke-control and reduction mechanisms;
  • Fire doors and walls that reduce the spread of a fire.

Value of Property Damage: The estimated value of the loss of the structure and contents, in terms of the cost of replacement in like kind and quantity, including;

  • Contents damaged by Fire;
  • Related damages caused by smoke, water, and overhaul;
  • Does not include indirect loss.

On-Campus Housing Facilities Fire Safety Systems:

All on-campus housing facilities constructed since 2004 have an active fire monitoring system.  These systems include full sprinklers, smoke detectors, audible alarms and strobes.  Apartment buildings have additional fire extinguishers located within each kitchen unit.  Three of our housing facilities Ellender Hall (1967), and Calecas Hall (1972) and Babington Halls (1964) have upgraded fire alarm systems that include monitoring.  The remaining facility (Family Housing) does not have an active monitoring system, but has all other fire safety systems consistent with campus housing units. (See Table)

Note: One off site campus location (Theodore Duhe’ Buildings) does not have campus housing facilities and is not included in the fire safety report.

Common kitchens include wet chemical extinguisher units for range tops and ovens, in conjunction with an automatic electrical current disconnect if activated.

Sprinkler, monitoring systems and fire pump systems are fully inspected and maintained by an outside certified contractor on an annual basis.  Smoke alarms are inspected monthly by residence staff.

Listed in Table form are the Safety Systems in place at each of the University on-campus housing facilities.  Facilities include residence halls and on-campus apartment housing.

Residence Halls/Apt. Sprinkeled Smoke Alarms Single Station not monitored Smoke Detectors Monitored by Building Fire Alarm System Fire Extinguisher Devices Fire Detection Devices Audible Alarm Strobe Alarm Fire Doors # of Fire Drills each Academic Year
Scholar Hall Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes 2
Millet Hall Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes 2
Zeringue Hall Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes 2
Calecas Hall Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes No 2
Ellender Hall No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes 2
South Babington Hall No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes 2
North Babington Hall No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes 2
Brady Complex Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes No 2
Family Housing No Yes No Yes No No No No 0

Fire Drills

Mandatory fire drills were conducted at all on-campus housing facilities during 2014.  These drills were supervised and were conducted between the hours of 2 PM and 5 PM while the majority of students were present.  Fire Drills are conducted once a semester.

Fire Drills are coordinated by the Environmental Health and Safety and the Residence Life Departments.  The local Fire Department is notified of all drills and is encouraged to participate and to conduct post drill review.  Resident Assistants (RA’s) assists with orderly evacuation of the building, and direct students to the designated Emergency Assembly Area.

Fire Drills were conducted on the following dates during the past year.

Spring Semester Fall Semester Residence Hall
2/12/14 9/10/14 Ellender Hall
2/05/14 9/04/14 ** Brady Complex
2/12/14 9/03/14 Scholars Hall
2/04/14 9/04/14 Millet Hall
2/05/14 9/10/14 Calecas Hall
2/05/14 9/04/14 Zeringue Hall
2/12/14 9/03/14 Babington Halls

** Brady Complex (Former La Maison Du Bayou)

Procedure for Evacuation of On-Campus Housing

All students receive a Housing & Residence Life Handbook when they check into a Nicholls State University on-campus housing facility.  Sections in the handbook are relevant to fire safety (see Fire Safety Policy).  In the event a fire alarm sounds in an on-campus facility, all residents and guests are expected to immediately evacuate the building through the nearest safe exit.  Each facility has a designated Emergency Assembly Area to which all residents and guests are expected to report.  A staff member will gather roll-call information along with provided information regarding the whereabouts of other residents.  This information will be provided quickly to the reporting authority on scene (Director of Safety, Director of Residence Life, University Police, or First Responder on Scene).  All evacuated individuals are not permitted to return to the building until an official “all clear” is issued.

Fire Safety Policy

Each resident receives a copy of the Housing and Residence Life Handbook upon checking into a Nicholls State University on-campus housing facility.  The following fire safety procedure is provided to all residents.

Candles:

The possession or burning of candles and tea lights is strictly prohibited in residence halls and apartments, including during a loss of electrical power. If such items are found, the items will be confiscated and the resident(s) will be sanctioned.

Electrical Appliances:

Electrical appliances must be U.L. (Underwriters Laboratories) approved and must not cause a disruption to the electrical circuits or disturb other residents. Students may not use toasters, toaster ovens, stoves, grills, electric frying pans, hot plates, space heaters, or any appliance with open filaments or heating elements in residence hall rooms. All coffeepots and irons must have an automatic shut off feature. The use of halogen lamps and space heaters is prohibited in all residence halls and apartments. If such items are found, the items will be confiscated and the resident(s) may face disciplinary action. Microwaves and mini-refrigerators are provided in suites in Scholars Hall, Millet Hall, and Zeringue Hall. Students in Ellender, Calecas, and Babington may bring and use a small microwave oven and a small mini-refrigerator. The mini-refrigerator must be no larger than 4.5 cubic feet. The use of surge protectors is required. The overloading of electrical circuits is a dangerous fire hazard and therefore not allowed. Electrical appliances and equipment must be used in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions. The University reserves the right to deny use of any appliance and/or to confiscate any unapproved appliance or appliance used in a manner contrary to University standards.

Fire Alarm Evacuations:

When building alarms sound, residents and guests shall evacuate the building immediately and gather in the designated evacuation location. Upon arrival at the designated evacuation location, the residents must check in with the staff on site to confirm the resident’s presence and safety. Failure to immediately evacuate the building, gather in the designated location, and/or check in with staff on site will result in disciplinary action.

Fire Alarms:

All occupants of a building (residents and guests) must immediately evacuate the building when the fire alarms sound. Students should report immediately to the designated gathering location for the building and report to the Residence Life Staff on site. Upon arrival at the designated evacuation location, the residents must check in with the staff on site to confirm the resident’s presence and safety. Failure to immediately evacuate the building, gather in the designated location, and/or check in with staff on site will result in disciplinary action. The setting of false fire alarms and/or the improper and/or unauthorized use of fire safety equipment (fire extinguishers, smoke detectors, exit signs, etc.) compromises the safety of all residents and is prohibited. Burning any substance and/or setting fires in the housing areas, including lighting candles and/or igniting flyers, decorations, or other posted materials, is not permitted under any circumstances. Violations of fire safety regulations will result in disciplinary action.

Fire Equipment, Alarms and Extinguishers:

In the event a fire extinguisher is discharged in response to a fire, the discharged extinguisher must be reported to the Residence Life Staff immediately to ensure the extinguisher is refilled. Pulling a false fire alarm is a felony. Tampering with fire protection equipment and systems may result in criminal charges in addition to University sanctions. The cost of re-charging discharged extinguishers and replacing damaged equipment maybe split among all residents if the individual(s) involved in discharging or damaging them are not identified.  Residents found to be tampering or disabling smoke detectors will be subject to disciplinary action.

Fire Exits:

Fire exits may be used only in cases of emergency. Residents should not exit or enter through any exits other than the designated primary entrance(s) to the building. Use of fire exits at any other time will result in disciplinary action.

Flammable Items:

The possession or burning of incense, candles, fireworks in any form, ammunition, petroleum fuel, motorized vehicles, gasoline-fueled machinery, explosive devices or materials, sterno, kerosene or oil lamps, or any combustible materials are strictly prohibited in residence halls and apartments, even during a loss of electrical power. If such items are found, the items will be confiscated, and the resident(s) will face disciplinary action. For safety reasons, ceilings, air vents, and light fixtures may not be covered by paper or other materials such as wrapping paper, fishnets, parachutes, large flags, etc. Students are strongly encouraged to purchase renters insurance. Nicholls State accepts no liability for loss of residents’ personal property due to fire.

Smoke-Free/Tobacco Free:

Acknowledging the clear scientific evidence that smoking—including the use of smokeless tobacco products and the effects of second-hand smoke—is injurious to health, and acknowledging the University’s desire to promote healthy living/working environments and a considerate community life, Nicholls State University is  a Tobacco Free Campus.  Violations may result in disciplinary action.

Fire Safety Education and Training

Staff Training in Fire Safety

Fire safety is a standard component of training for all Head Residents, Resident Assistants, and Student Assistants.  This training includes:

  • evacuation procedures to be followed when/if fire alarms sound
  • instruction in all designated gathering points outside each residential facility
  • procedures to report unaccounted residents to first responders
  • documentation to be completed to provide record of procedures
  • proper use of fire extinguishers, including hands-on experience (conducted by Environmental Health & Safety staff)

Resident Information

An evacuation plan and diagram is posted in each residence hall suite.

Each residential facility is required to review evacuation procedures at the first resident meeting each semester.  A review is required at each monthly resident meeting throughout the semester.

Future Improvements in Fire Safety

Improvements in Fire Safety are as follows:

  • Fire safety is a standard component of training for all Head Residents, Resident Assistants, and Student Assistants. This training is conducted prior to the start of a semester.
  • Handouts are distributed to each resident of each facility and include a standard set of informational materials distributed to residents as they check into campus housing.
  • It is important to incorporate the diverse needs of individuals when planning for evacuations. Faculty and Staff receive training on assisting persons with disabilities while evacuating during an emergency.

[i] Definitions from The Center For Campus Fire Safety

3rd Quarter 2015 – Emergency Evacuation – In Case of Fire

The U.S. Fire Administration reports that 93,700 fires occurred in non-residential buildings in 2013, resulting in 65 fatalities, 1425 injuries, and over 2.4 billion in dollar loss.  The best way to prevent these deadly fires from occurring is by eliminating the possible fire hazards.  You are responsible for fire prevention at work for your safety as well as your co-workers.  Potential hazards should be immediately reported to your supervisor or to the University Environmental Health & Safety Department.

If you’re ever confronted with a fire keep your cool, but think fast and act with caution.  When a fire is discovered, size it up fast.  Knowing when to try to control the fire yourself and when to call for help is essential.

In case of fire, follow the following Emergency Fire Response Procedures:

  • Sound the alarm and evacuate the area. Call the emergency numbers you’ve been given, and give the details about the fire (location, how it started, etc.).  Never hesitate to call, even if the fire seems minor and you manage to put it out before firefighters arrive.  The quicker the alarm is sounded; the sooner firefighters can attempt to get it under control.  Have someone meet and tell the firefighters where the fire is located.  They can lose valuable minutes if they have to find it themselves.
  • You’re responsible for preventing fires, but you aren’t obligated to fight major fires. Fight the fire only if you can do it safely with proper extinguishing materials at hand.
  • Warn others immediately. Go to the closest fire alarm pull station and activate the alarm system. Warn anyone in the area so they can get to safety.  This is especially important in case of indoor fires.  Most people die from smoke, poisonous gases and panic.  Panic is usually the result of not knowing what to do.
  • Most fires start small, but they can rage out of control in a few minutes. It’s important to know where the fire extinguishers are located and how to operate them properly.  Distinguish before you extinguish.  Choose the correct extinguisher for the type of fire (paper/wood, grease/gas/flammable liquids, electrical).  If you are not trained or authorized to use an extinguisher, don’t try.  The time you waste in figuring out an extinguisher could mean the difference between minor damage and a major disaster.

It is important to incorporate the diverse needs of individuals when planning for evacuations.  Everyone should take the time to locate the nearest exit or enclosed stairwell that will lead you directly out of the building.  Always give preference to the use of an enclosed stairwell in an emergency.  Enclosed stairwell landings are an Area of Rescue Assistance for individuals with a disability.  Remember, never use elevators during an emergency evacuation.

 

The following are tips for assisting persons with disabilities to evacuate a building in the event of an emergency:

During an Emergency Evacuation Procedure:

  1. Communicate the nature of the emergency to the person.
  2. Ask the person how they would like to be assisted.
  3. When you evacuate the person, make sure you bring along their mobility aids if possible, for example, cane, walker, etc.

Persons with Visual Disabilities:

Tell the person the nature of the emergency and offer to guide them to the nearest exit.  Have them take your elbow and help them avoid obstacles.  Even if they have a guide dog, it is wise to offer to physically guide them.  When you reach safety, tell the person where they are and help them to get oriented to the location.

Persons with Hearing Disabilities:

While most buildings have flashing light alarms, the person may be engrossed in their work or in a location where the alarm is not readily visible.  Communicate the emergency to them in whatever manner is comfortable to you, utilizing hand gestures or a quick note.

Persons with Physical Disabilities:

  • Persons using Canes, Walkers or Crutches

Ask the person what assistance they need.  If assistance is requested, encourage them to use the stair rail and walk behind the person to act as a buffer from others who may push forward from behind. Note: (If the person does not need assistance, the person should wait until heavy traffic has cleared before attempting the stairs. Utilize the Area of Rescue Assistance until it is safe to exit).

  • Persons using Wheelchairs

Ask the person what assistance they need.  In general, however, persons using wheelchairs should be moved to a fire safe exit (stairwell landing).  If possible, have someone stay with the person until additional assistance has arrived, while a second person notifies rescue personnel of the area in which the person is located.  In an emergency, DO NOT USE THE ELEVATORS.  All of the stairwell landings are protected with fire rated doors and are the safest place to be in the event of a fire.  Rescue personnel are trained to check these areas for persons who may need assistance.

Remember to review fire safety procedures often so you’ll know what to do.

  • Act with caution.
  • Sound the alarm.
  • Warn others in the area.
  • Evacuate and stay back unless you’re asked to help.

In case of fire, being informed and prepared can keep you and your co-workers safe from injury.

2nd Quarter 2015 – Hurricane Emergency Plan

Hurricane Emergency Plan

Introduction

The purpose of the Nicholls State University Hurricane Emergency Plan is to provide a detailed summary of the steps deemed necessary to secure the university and protect property and lives in the event of an approaching hurricane.

The plan is available to all university employees, students and members of the community and can be accessed via the internet on the home page of the Nicholls web site. The plan lists and explains the various levels of preparedness the university will undertake depending on the severity of a weather threat to the Thibodaux area. It also lists action plans for all of the university departments that will be most affected by an approaching storm.

In the event that a tropical system enters the Gulf of Mexico, the university will immediately be placed on standby alert. At this time, interested parties can monitor the Nicholls home page to determine the exact level of preparedness currently underway at the university. There are five phases or levels of preparedness that may be implemented before, during, and after a possible storm. Each is explained in specific detail within the plan.

The coordinated execution of the plan is the responsibility of the university’s Emergency Preparedness Committee (EPC). The plan is reviewed and updated by the committee annually.

General Information Concerning Plan Implementation

The university president or his designee, in consultation with the EPC, will determine which phase of the plan is appropriate for activation based upon the anticipated effects of an approaching storm.

Once the Hurricane Emergency Plan is activated, students, faculty, staff, and the community at large will be notified of all decisions resulting from a possible hurricane threat, via the Nicholls web site, e-mail, television, radio, text-messaging boards, phone call, text messages or any other communication outlets which are available. Utilization of a multi-communication system will assure that a person with disabilities will receive a timely notification of the event. Nicholls State University utilizes the Everbridge Notification system. All faculty, staff and students are encouraged to remain registered in the notification system.

According to the plan, some employees are designated essential by their supervisors and directed to work during an emergency. As a result, required duties may differ from normal responsibilities. Employee positions which are considered essential may be 2 listed in individual departmental emergency plans or an employee may be designated by his or her supervisor in the event of an impending emergency.

Emergency Plan Guidelines

Standby Alert – When the National Weather Service predicts that a tropical system will enter the Gulf of Mexico, the University Emergency Preparedness Committee will monitor the projected path and speed of the storm and all departments should enact Standby Alert procedures. During this alert phase of the emergency guidelines, all departmental directors and department heads shall include in the preparation guidelines those accommodations that persons with disabilities may require. Those accommodations shall be implemented accordingly as the emergency phases are implemented.

Phase I – When a tropical system has entered the Gulf of Mexico or has made landfall on the outer edges of the Gulf and is expected to re-enter the Gulf, and the South Louisiana area is within the probability of landfall zone, the Emergency Preparedness Committee will monitor the speed and path of the storm. The Committee will assess on which side of the storm Thibodaux would be, the distance from the predicted landfall area, and the strength of the storm (present and at landfall). All departments must enact Phase I storm preparations.

Phase II – When a tropical system is within the Gulf of Mexico and South Louisiana is in the landfall zone, although not in the high probability zone, but the area is expected to feel the effects of the system to where the National Weather Service might issue a Tropical Storm Warning or a Hurricane Watch for South Louisiana and the Thibodaux area. The EPC will continue to monitor the strength, speed, and projected landfall site. The EPC will set up operations in the President’s Conference Room, Picciola Hall. All departments must enact Phase II storm preparation.

Phase III – When a tropical system is in the Gulf of Mexico and South Louisiana is in the high probability landfall zone and the National Weather Service issues a Tropical Storm Warning for South Louisiana that includes the Thibodaux area, the EPC will make recommendations to the University President regarding 3 scheduled classes. The University President will make the decision to cancel or continue class. If the National Weather Service issues a Hurricane Warning for South Louisiana that includes the Thibodaux area, university classes will be cancelled. Students are advised to evacuate to an area out of the storm’s path. The EPC will continue to monitor the storms strength, speed, and projected landfall. If a mandatory evacuation order is not given for the Thibodaux area, the University will open a shelter for students as well as staff who are unable to leave the campus. If a mandatory evacuation is given for the Thibodaux area, on campus residents without a means of transportation will be evacuated to another state university where they will receive pre-arranged shelter and meals for the duration of their stay. The EPC will finalize all preparations for the storm. All nonessential personnel will be released from their work stations. The pre-position team will continue to monitor the storms strength, speed and projected landfall. Based on the above information, the team will make the determination to remain on campus or evacuate to a pre-arranged shelter. The decision to evacuate will be made no later than 18 hours prior to landfall. All departments must enact Phase III storm preparations.

Phase IV – After the storm has passed and provided that the roads are passable and the state and local government officials are allowing travel back into the area, certain employees who are designated to be essential or first responders by their supervisors are required to report to work within 24 hours. Other employees should contact their immediate supervisor, by telephone or e-mail, within 24 hours of the storm passing to secure directions for action. All employees should be prepared to report to work or return the University to operating as soon as possible. Students should monitor designated information outlets for the resumption of classes. Department heads should have a plan to return to work to assess damage, to react to immediate needs, to coordinate scheduling of employees, and to report needs and damages to the Office of Physical Plant.

Phase V – If the storm has passed and has caused major damage on campus, employees must contact their supervisors for direction or contact either the Nicholls Help Line or the Nicholls Web site to let their supervisor know where they are and whether or not they can return to the area. Only the Pre-Position team will return to campus to establish a command center and begin damage assessment. The Pre-Position team will also begin debris clean-up and will take action as needed to protect university assets.

Note:  Individual Department plans were not included in this handout.  To see this document in its entirety please refer to the Nicholls homepage under “University Status & Emergency Preparedness”.  Additional information may be obtained from your local parish Office of Emergency Preparedness, Governor’s Office of Homeland Security & Emergency Preparedness website at http://www.getagameplan.org or your local weather service. This information may be helpful in developing your personal emergency preparedness plan.

1st Quarter 2015 – Disability Awareness & Effective Communication

More than 54 million Americans have a disability. The Americans with Disabilities ACT (ADA) of 1990 was conceived with the goal of integrating people with disabilities into all aspects of life, particularly the workplace and marketplace. Sensitivity towards people with disabilities is the spirit of the ADA and when we are disability aware and use disability etiquette, co-workers, employees and students with disabilities feel more comfortable and work more productively. Practicing disability etiquette is an easy way to make people with disabilities feel welcome.

You don’t have to feel awkward when communicating with a person with a disability. The attached Power Point presentation provides some basic tips for you to follow. If you have any questions or concerns please contact Robin Bell, Director of Disability Services at 448-4430.

Disability awareness and effective communication2 (2) (4)

4th Quarter 2014 – Safety Rules & Ebola Information

Safety Rules

  1. Observe and follow all posted safety notices.
  2. The use of any tobacco product in any form is prohibited on all Nicholls State University properties including the main campus, Duhe Building, Chauvin Gardens, etc.
  3. No fighting or horseplay allowed in the work area or classroom.
  4. Know where fire extinguishers are located and how to use them.
  5. Evacuate in an orderly manner if the fire alarm sounds.
  6. Know designated evacuation routes from your floor and building.
  7. Know emergency phone numbers or access to them.
  8. Report all injuries and accidents to your supervisor.
  9. Report to your supervisor any equipment that is not operating properly.
  10. Do not run in the work area.
  11. Report unsafe conditions to your supervisor.
  12. Do not throw objects in the work area.
  13. Keep your work station clean and orderly.
  14. Keep floor free of litter.
  15. Place litter and waste materials in proper containers.
  16. Do not walk on wet floors and immediately wipe up spills.
  17. Keep passageway clear to allow easy access and exit.
  18. Keep desk, filing drawers, etc. closed to avoid hazards to those walking by.
  19. Return equipment and material to their proper place after use.
  20. Report lighting and ventilation problems affecting you to your immediate supervisor.
  21. Always read labels before using chemicals, bleaches, cleaning fluid, etc. that could be harmful if spilled.
  22. When working with hazardous chemicals, do not work alone.
  23. Use only approved cleaning fluids when cleaning machinery. Remember to allow for proper ventilation. Dispose of rags and waste material in proper containers and away from heat.
  24. Do not operate machines or equipment without proper training.
  25. Never leave a machine or equipment in operation unattended. Turn machine and equipment off before leaving the office at the end of the workday.
  26. Neckties, scarves and other wearing apparel should be secured when working around equipment.
  27. Notify your supervisor of any breakage or malfunction of machinery or equipment.
  28. Wear eye protection, respirators, or protective clothing in regulated areas or during functions requiring protective gear.
  29. Report frayed electrical cords immediately.
  30. Tape temporary electrical cords to the floor to prevent tripping.
  31. Do not overload electrical circuits.
  32. Do not use electrical extension cords as a permanent electrical line.
  33. Never turn on an electrical switch unless you know what it operates and have had the adequate training on that piece of equipment.
  34. Do not attempt to repair electrical devices unless properly trained to do so. Otherwise, report it to a supervisor.
  35. Keep flammable items away from electrical outlets, cords or other electrical apparatus.
  36. Use only properly grounded electrical equipment.
  37. When using university vehicles or your own vehicle for authorized travel, remember to use your seat belts and drive defensively.
  38. Only authorized drivers allowed to operate state vehicles or personal vehicles for state business.
  39. Do not text and drive.

These listed safety rules are not totally inclusive. They are intended as a guide to develop proper health and safety practices and procedures. Should you have questions or doubts about safe operations in the workplace, please contact your supervisor or the Safety Officer. Nicholls State University wants to provide a safe and healthy work and academic environment for its students, faculty and staff.

 

In addition, University Health Services and the Office Environmental Health & Safety departments have been monitoring the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) for the latest information on Ebola. Attached are a couple of documents from the CDC for your review.

what-need-to-know-ebola (1)

is-it-flu-or-ebola

 

3rd Quarter 2014 – Bloodborne Pathogens

Blood Borne Pathogens

Purpose
The purpose of this training is to reduce or eliminate occupational exposure to blood and other potentially infectious materials.

Rules and Regulations
Office of Risk Management (ORM) Requirements – requires the university to develop a bloodborne pathogens plan. Also, it is required that the university provides training to all employees once every five years. High risk employees must be trained annually.

University Bloodborne Pathogens Plan – is updated and available to all employees in the online safety manual and a hard copy is available in each department.

What are Bloodborne Pathogens (BBP)
Pathogens are any disease-producing microorganisms such as viruses or bacteria. Those which are carried in the blood or in other potentially infectious materials are considered bloodborne.

Why do YOU need Blood Borne Pathogens Training?

  •  To protect your health and that of other employees.
  •  To gain a basic understanding of BBP, common modes of transmission, and methods of prevention.
  •  The State, via The Office of Risk Management (ORM), requires it.

All State of Louisiana employees are required to be trained on their agency-specific Bloodborne Pathogen Plan within the first 90 days of employment and every five years thereafter. However, if you have been identified as a high risk employee, you must have agency-specific training annually. One is considered a high risk employee if they can reasonably anticipate having contact with blood or other potentially infectious material as part of their regular job duties.

Definitions
HIV – The virus that causes the acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS).
Hepatitis B – An infection of the liver. It is transmitted by contaminated blood or blood derivatives in transfusions, by sexual contact with an infected person, or by the use of contaminated needles and instruments. The disease has a long incubation and symptoms that may become severe or chronic, causing serious damage to the liver. Symptoms of Hepatitis B may include: fever, joint pain, weakness, abdominal pain, nausea and jaundice.
Other Potentially Infectious Materials – Semen, vaginal secretions, cerebrospinal fluid, synovial fluid, pleural fluid, amniotic fluid, saliva in dental procedures, and any other fluid that is visibly contaminated with blood, and all fluids in situations where it is difficult to differentiate body fluids.

Transmission of Blood Borne Pathogens
Blood Borne Pathogens are acquired through specific exposure incidents, and can be transmitted by both “direct” and “indirect” modes.

Direct Modes of Transmission
Blood Borne Pathogens can enter the body directly through the mucous membranes of the eyes, nose, mouth, and via sexual contact. Also, open sores, cuts, abrasions, acne, human bites, punctures and/or broken skin are modes of transmission. Pregnant mothers can also transmit Blood Borne Pathogens to their baby at or before birth.

Indirect Modes of Transmission

  •  Contact with contaminated or infected needles, razors, toothbrushes, or other personal care items
  • Coming into contact with a contaminated surface and then touching broken skin or mucous membranes
  • Tattooing or body piercing tools

Bloodborne Pathogens can be transmitted when blood or body fluid from an infected person enters another person’s body. Any body fluid with blood is potentially infectious.

Potential High Risk Areas
University police, athletic trainers, plumbers, campus recreation staff, culinary staff and accident investigators have been designated as potential high risk areas for bloodborne exposure due to the nature of their jobs.

Control Methods
Universal Precautions – refers to a method of infection control in which all human body and other potentially infectious materials are treated as if known to be infected for HBV and HIV. This concept emphasizes that all people treated by faculty, staff, and students should be assumed to be infectious for HIV and other bloodborne pathogens.
Engineering Controls – is the use of available technology and devices to isolate or remove hazards to the individual.
Work Practice Controls – are alterations in the manner in which a task is performed in an effort to reduce the likelihood of an individual’s exposure to blood or other potentially infectious materials.

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
• Employers must make available and employees must use personal protective equipment (PPE) when the possibility of exposure to blood or other infectious materials exists.
• Employees must be trained in the use of PPE.
• PPE must be accessible and clean.
• Disposable gloves must be replaced as soon as they are torn or punctured.
• Eye protection must be worn if there is a chance for a splash to occur.
• The level of protection required is dependent upon the task at hand.

Tags, Labels, and Bags
• Tags that comply with OSHA 29CFR 1910.145 (f) shall be used to identify the presence of an actual or potential biological hazard.
• Tags shall contain the word “BIOHAZARD” or the biological hazard symbol and state the specific hazardous condition or the instructions to be communicated to faculty, staff and students.
• Red bags or red containers (orange-red) may be substituted for labels on containers of infectious waste.

Hand Washing
Proper hand washing is one of the easiest and most effective infection control measures. When possible, use antibacterial soap. Avoid harsh, abrasive soaps that may cause skin abrasions. For basic hand washing, hands should be washed thoroughly for at least 10 – 15 seconds, with vigorous friction on all surfaces (i.e., wrists, palms, back of hands, in between fingers and nail beds).

Hygiene Practices
If you are working in an area where there is a reasonable likelihood of exposure, you should never eat, drink, smoke, apply cosmetics (including lip balm), or handle contact lenses. These actions could provide a route of entry for infection.

Precautions You Can Take
• Disinfect all surfaces soiled with blood or other potential infectious materials
• Always wear gloves when cleaning areas contaminated with blood or other potentially infectious materials
• Be careful of sharp objects when emptying trash bins

Post Exposure Evaluation & Follow up
• Report all exposures to a supervisor and seek medical attention immediately
• Report and document the exposure incident, including the route of exposure and the circumstances under which the exposure incident occurred.
• Identify the source individual, if possible.
• If consent can be obtained, the source individual’s blood will be tested.
• Notify the Environmental Health & Safety Office (985-448-4783)

Blood Borne Pathogen rules are in place for your health and safety. By incorporating these rules, along with our policies and procedures, and practicing universal precautions, you can protect yourself against potential exposure to Blood Borne Pathogens and aid in preventing transmission.

2nd Quarter 2014 – Hurricane Emergency Plan

HURRICANE EMERGENCY PLAN

Introduction

The purpose of the Nicholls State University Hurricane Emergency Plan is to provide a detailed summary of the steps deemed necessary to secure the university and protect property and lives in the event of an approaching hurricane.

The plan is available to all university employees, students and members of the community and can be accessed via the internet on the home page of the Nicholls web site. The plan lists and explains the various levels of preparedness the university will undertake depending on the severity of a weather threat to the Thibodaux area. It also lists action plans for all of the university departments that will be most affected by an approaching storm.

In the event that a tropical system enters the Gulf of Mexico, the university will immediately be placed on standby alert. At this time, interested parties can monitor the Nicholls home page to determine the exact level of preparedness currently underway at the university. There are five phases or levels of preparedness that may be implemented before, during, and after a possible storm. Each is explained in specific detail within the plan.

The coordinated execution of the plan is the responsibility of the university’s Emergency Preparedness Committee (EPC). The plan is reviewed and updated by the committee annually.

General Information Concerning Plan Implementation

The university president or his designee, in consultation with the EPC, will determine which phase of the plan is appropriate for activation based upon the anticipated effects of an approaching storm.

Once the Hurricane Emergency Plan is activated, students, faculty, staff, and the community at large will be notified of all decisions resulting from a possible hurricane threat, via the Nicholls web site, e-mail, television, radio, text-messaging boards, phone call, text messages or any other communication outlets which are available. Utilization of a multi-communication system will assure that a person with disabilities will receive a timely notification of the event. Nicholls State University utilizes the First Call Notification system. All faculty, staff and students are encouraged to remain registered in the notification system.

According to the plan, some employees are designated essential by their supervisors and directed to work during an emergency. As a result, required duties may differ from normal responsibilities. Employee positions which are considered essential may be listed in individual departmental emergency plans or an employee may be designated by his or her supervisor in the event of an impending emergency.

Communications between EPC members and auxiliary staff who assist with implementation of the plan will be maintained by various means of communication including landlines (home or office), cell phones, or any other means deemed appropriate.

Once the plan is activated and until a permanent command post is established, all critical information and command post numbers will be disseminated by University Police via a 24/7 dispatch and/or internet or voice mail. (See Appendix A for contact information).

Emergency Plan Guidelines:

Standby Alert – When the National Weather Service predicts that a tropical system will enter the Gulf of Mexico, the University Emergency Preparedness Committee will monitor the projected path and speed of the storm and all departments should enact Standby Alert procedures. During this alert phase of the emergency guidelines, all departmental directors and department heads shall include in the preparation guidelines those accommodations that persons with disabilities may require. Those accommodations shall be implemented accordingly as the emergency phases are implemented.

Phase I – When a tropical system has entered the Gulf of Mexico or has made landfall on the outer edges of the Gulf and is expected to re-enter the Gulf, and the South Louisiana area is within the probability of landfall zone, the Emergency Preparedness Committee will monitor the speed and path of the storm. The Committee will assess on which side of the storm Thibodaux would be, the distance from the predicted landfall area, and the strength of the storm (present and at landfall). All departments must enact Phase I storm preparations.

 Phase II – When a tropical system is within the Gulf of Mexico and South Louisiana is in the landfall zone, although not in the high probability zone, but the area is expected to feel the effects of the system to where the National Weather Service might issue a Tropical Storm Warning or a Hurricane Watch for South Louisiana and the Thibodaux area. The EPC will continue to monitor the strength, speed, and projected landfall site. The EPC will set up operations in the President’s Conference Room, Picciola Hall. All departments must enact Phase II storm preparation

 Phase III – When a tropical system is in the Gulf of Mexico and South Louisiana is in the high probability landfall zone and the National Weather Service issues a Tropical Storm Warning for South Louisiana that includes the Thibodaux area, the EPC will make recommendations to the University President regarding scheduled classes. The University President will make the decision to cancel or continue class. If the National Weather Service issues a Hurricane Warning for South Louisiana that includes the Thibodaux area, university classes will be cancelled. Students are advised to evacuate to an area out of the storm’s path. The EPC will continue to monitor the storms strength, speed, and projected landfall. If a mandatory evacuation order is not given for the Thibodaux area, the University will open a shelter for students as well as staff who are unable to leave the campus. If a mandatory evacuation is given for the Thibodaux area, on campus residents without a means of transportation will be evacuated to another state university where they will receive pre-arranged shelter and meals for the duration of their stay. The EPC will finalize all preparations for the storm. All nonessential personnel will be released from their work stations. The pre-position team will continue to monitor the storms strength, speed and projected landfall. Based on the above information, the team will make the determination to remain on campus or evacuate to a pre-arranged shelter. The decision to evacuate will be made no later than 18 hours prior to landfall. All departments must enact Phase III storm preparations.

 Phase IV – After the storm has passed and provided that the roads are passable and the state and local government officials are allowing travel back into the area, certain employees who are designated to be essential or first responders by their supervisors are required to report to work within 24 hours. Other employees should contact their immediate supervisor, by telephone or e-mail, within 24 hours of the storm passing to secure directions for action. All employees should be prepared to report to work or return the University to operating as soon as possible. Students should monitor designated information outlets for the resumption of classes. Department heads should have a plan to return to work to assess damage, to react to immediate needs, to coordinate scheduling of employees, and to report needs and damages to the Office of Physical Plant.

Phase V – If the storm has passed and has caused major damage on campus, employees must contact their supervisors for direction or contact either the Nicholls Help Line or the Nicholls Web site to let their supervisor know where they are and whether or not they can return to the area. Only the Pre-Position team will return to campus to establish a command center and begin damage assessment. The Pre-Position team will also begin debris clean-up and will take action as needed to protect university assets.

 

2014 Fire Log

NICHOLLS STATE UNIVERSITY

2014

FIRE LOG

 

Resident Facilities

Date

Time

Cause/Type of Fire

# of Injuries Requiring Medical Treatment

# of Deaths Related to Fire

Property Damage in Dollars

Case Number

Millet Hall

2/4

3:31 PM

Cooking/microwave

0

0

0

NA

Ellender Hall

3/8

10:23 PM

Cooking/cooking oil

0

0

0

2014-00071

Case Number:

No case opened – On 2/4/2014, the fire alarm at Millet Hall sounded causing an evacuation of the entire building.  Nicholls State Police along with Environmental Safety & Health personnel responded to the scene.  No emergency fire personnel were needed to respond.  The investigation revealed that a student had tried to microwave a container of macaroni and cheese.  It appears as if the student did not add the required water prior to cooking, resulting in the dish of macaroni and cheese to burn.  Once the student opened up her room door to vent the smoke out, the general smoke alarm located in the hallway sounded the fire alarm.  The smoke was quickly cleared from the area and alarm system reset.

Case # 2014-00071.  On 3/8/2014, while students were attempting to fry fish in a small skillet, a small cooking oil fire ignited.  Statements from the students were taken by University Police, where they stated that the fire began from some oil that had previously been spilled on the electric burner, and not from oil running over the small skillet.  The Guardian Fire Suppressant system was activated immediately extinguishing the small fire.  No injuries or damage was reported.