Laboratory Animal Services
STANDARD OPERATING PROCEDURES AND POLICIES
EMERGENCY and SAFETY PROCEDURES
CONTENTS: 1. TYPES OF EMERGENCIES
2. ESSENTIAL EMERGENCY PROCEDURES
3. YOUR OBLIGATIONS
4. Appendices: Emergency Numbers
Emergency Response Summary
Bomb Threat Check List (AS 3745-1990)
1. TYPES OF EMERGENCIES
Emergencies in animal facilities can include:
Medical emergencies: acute allergy/asthma attack, bites, kicks, head-butts, cardiac
arrest, fall/head injury.
Spillages: radioactive, infectious, toxic, liquid nitrogen, anaesthetics, flammable liquid
Security breaches: intruders, theft, vandalism, bomb threat, suspicious packages.
Building hazards: gas leak, electrical hazard.
Service failure: air conditioning, power (lighting), water supply.
Natural disasters: fire, flood, wind damage.
Ventilated cage failure: power failure or air handling unit failure.
Loss of access: doorlock failure, lift failure, obstruction.
Emergencies may threaten:
Research data and specimens
2. ESSENTIAL EMERGENCY PROCEDURES
Fire, Police or Ambulance
Call 0-000. Alternatively, call Security Services on extension 13333.
1) During office hours:
Veterinary emergencies: Call the LAS Director on extension 13603 or 0401 719 456.
Building emergencies: Call the LAS Director on extension 13603 or Trades Services
2) After hours:
Call Security Services on extension 13487. You will be put through to an appropriate
person who can assist with:
- After hours veterinary emergencies;
- Major building faults which could affect animal safety or well-being;
- Breaches of security.
If an alarm sounds…
Always assume that the emergency is real and evacuate promptly in an orderly manner.
Do not stop to collect any animals or possessions.
Do not re-enter the building until given permission to do so by an authorised officer.
If able-bodied people refuse to leave the building, leave them behind. Do not risk your own
safety by spending time with those who refuse to evacuate without good reason.
EWIS alarm systems
Early Warning and Information System (EWIS) alarms are installed in many University
buildings. These are designed to provide assistance in any potential emergency (not just fire).
When an EWIS alarm sounds:
1) Loud beeps: Stay where you are but prepare to evacuate. If you can see a
danger, evacuate immediately in an orderly manner.
2) Wailing (rather like a siren): Evacuate immediately in an orderly manner. This
sound will continue for 2 hours.
EWIS alarms can be activated automatically (by smoke) or manually (by breaking glass in the
white, wall-mounted boxes).
You may activate the system manually whenever you feel that safety is threatened (e.g.
intruders, chemical spill, electrical hazard). Note, however, that Security Services is only
notified when the system is activated automatically; in the case of manual activation,
someone will need to call the Security emergencies number 13333.
Finally – if you hear the alarm sound, always assume it is a real emergency.
Evacuation of animals
Evacuation of animals will be under the direction of LAS staff. The evacuation plan will take
Whether it is safe to enter the building.
The need to comply with Gene Technology and Quarantine safety regulations.
The health status of the animals.
The health status of facilities to which animals may be moved.
Potential occupational health and animal health hazards.
The appropriateness of alternatives to evacuation including euthanasia or re-
allocation of resources from other facilities or within the same facility.
3. YOUR OBLIGATIONS
If your work will involve:
Infectious agents (including genetically modified micro-organisms)
Flammable or explosive compounds
Conduct a risk assessment and consult the LAS Director prior to commencing work.
Prepare an Emergency Procedures document covering first aid, spillages, accidents,
storage and waste disposal. This must be kept in the AEC document folder in your
Label cages with the name of the hazardous agent and a notice with the wording
“See AEC folder for Emergency Procedures”.
Clearly inform the animal facility manager before commencing work.
Familiarisation with emergency information
Users of animal facilities must be familiar with the location or details of:
Telephones and list of emergency numbers (see end of this document)
First aid kits
Torches and spare batteries
EWIS break-glass boxes
Evacuation assembly area for the building
Emergency Response Summary (see end of this document)
Protection of data and specimens
Investigators should ensure they have back-up copies of data and, where possible, duplicate
specimens in the event of damage to material stored in an animal facility.
Where it is not possible to collect duplicate specimens, investigators should prepare a
disaster plan in which material could be re-located to fridges at other locations at short notice.
Back-up generators to operate equipment etc during an extended power outage has been
installed in buildings housing some but not all LAS animal facilities.
It is strongly recommended that you do not store valuable specimens in fridges in animal
facilities since this equipment is not alarmed.
Comprehensive information (including further details of animal facility safety) can be found at:
IN CASE OF EMERGENCY
Fire, Police and Ambulance
Call 0-000 or Security Services on 13333.
These numbers should only be used in potentially life-threatening
During office hours:
Veterinary emergencies: Please seek advice from animal
house staff or call ext 13603, ext 14742 or mobile 0401 719
456 and ask to speak to a veterinarian.
Building emergencies (e.g. power failure, air conditioning
failure, major leak): Contact the animal house staff or call the
LAS office on either extension 13603 or 14742. If neither of
these are available, call Trades Services directly on 17838.
Security and safety matters: Call Security Services on
Call extension 13487. Calls to this number will be answered
promptly. Upon receiving your call, Security Services will
contact the relevant services to assist in situations including:
- After hours veterinary emergencies.
- Building emergencies that threaten animal well-being.
- Security and safety issues.
EMERGENCY RESPONSE SUMMARY
Emergency Example Primary response Secondary response
Medical Allergy/asthma Call 13333 or 0-000 Not applicable
emergency Cardiac arrest
(serious) Fall/head injury
Medical Bites, Kicks Call Security for Contact LAS staff for first aid
emergency Head-butts first aid on 13487
Spillage Radioactive Warn anyone in Notify facility supervisor and/or
Infectious immediate danger. LAS Director
Toxic Follow Emergency
Liquid nitrogen Procedures
Anaesthetic prepared by
Security breach Intruder Call Security on See Bomb Threat Check List at
Vandalism 13333 or Police on end of this document. Notify
Theft 0-000 facility supervisor and/or LAS
Bomb threat Director
Building hazard Gas leak Warn others. Call Notify facility supervisor and/or
Electrical hazard Security on 13487 LAS Director
Service failure Air conditioning Call Security on Notify facility supervisor and/or
Power/lighting 13487 LAS Director
Natural disaster Fire Call 13333 or (if Notify facility supervisor and/or
Flood less urgent) call LAS Director
Storm/wind Security on 13487
Ventilated cage Power failure or Monitor hourly. Assess human and animal
failure air handler failure Notify LAS Director. health safety. Options may
include relocation or opening of
Animal Flood, fire Follow instructions Render assistance and advice
evacuation from Security and
Loss of access Doorlock failure Call Security on Notify facility supervisor and/or
Lift failure 13487 (Patrol have LAS Director
Obstruction key over-ride)
BOMB THREAT CHECK LIST
(From AS 3745-1990)
DO NOT HANG UP Did you recognise the voice?
Was the caller familiar with the area?
QUESTIONS TO ASK:
1. When is the Bomb going to explode? THREAT LANGUAGE:
2. Where did you put the Bomb? Well spoken?
3. When did you put it there? Incoherent?
4. What does the Bomb look like? Irrational?
5. What kind of Bomb is it? Taped?
6. What will make the Bomb explode? Message read by caller?
7. Did you place the Bomb? Abusive?
8. Why did you place the Bomb? Other?
9. What is your name?
10. Where are you? BACKGROUND NOISES:
11. What is your address? Street noises or house noises?
EXACT WORDING OF THREAT: Voices?
Sex of caller: OTHER:
Estimated age: Local or long distance call?
Accent (specify): Date, time and duration of call:
Any impediment (specify):
Voice (loud, soft etc): RECIPIENT:
Speech (fast, slow etc): Name:
Diction (clear, muffled etc): Telephone number:
Manner (calm, emotional etc): Signature:
Report details immediately to Security Services on extension 13333.
The response to a bomb threat is often different to other emergencies. For example,
the device could be located in an exit or at the evacuation assembly area. The
Security Service will work with Police to decide the best course of action.
If asked to evacuate, check the area around you for unusual items or packages on
your way out and report any findings to Security immediately.