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Health & Safety

Safety during Pregnancy

Introduction

The Safety, Health and Welfare at Work (General Application) Regulations 2007, Part 6, Chapter 2, Protection of Pregnant, Post Natal and Breastfeeding Employees (from now on referred to as The Pregnancy Regulations) apply when an employee informs her manager that she is pregnant, has recently given birth or is breastfeeding and provides an appropriate medical certificate.

Note - As the earliest stages of pregnancy are the most critical ones for the developing child it is in the employee’s best interest to let her employer know she is pregnant as soon as possible.

What should a manager do when he/she is informed that an employee is pregnant?

Once a manager becomes aware that an employee is pregnant, they must assess the specific risks from the employment to that employee and take action to ensure that she is not exposed to anything, which would damage either her health or that of her developing child.

Risk assessments should already have identified any hazards, which may present a risk during pregnancy. The risk assessment specifically required by the Pregnancy Regulations should therefore, be a re-appraisal of the hazards already identified. Click here to access the Pregnancy Risk Assessment.

Is DCU Required to provide a rest room?

Regulation (24) states that a rest room will be available for pregnant, post natal and breastfeeding employees to allow them to lie down and rest in appropriate conditions.

  • Glasnevin Campus - XG‐38
  • St Pats Campus - B131
  • All Hallows Campus - Location to be confirmed

I am pregnant /breastfeeding and work with radioactive sources. What damage can the cause?

Ionising Radiation 

Significant exposure to ionising radiation is harmful to the foetus. Work procedures should be designed to keep exposure of the pregnant employee as low as reasonably practicable and certainly below the statutory dose limit for a pregnant employee. The guidance offered by the Radiation Protection Officer should be adhered too in such circumstances and all internal procedures and protocols relating to this risk implemented.

Non Ionising Radiation

Pregnant or breast-feeding mothers are at no greater risk than other workers when working with optical radiation. Exposure to electric and magnetic fields when working with electromagnetic fields and waves within current recommendations is not known to cause harm to the foetus or the mother. However extreme over-exposure to radio-frequency radiation can raise body temperature making the pregnant mother uncomfortable.

Can extremes of cold or heat affect my unborn baby or me?

No specific problems arise from working in extreme cold but warm clothing should be provided as per risk assessment.

What biological agents are harmful to me while pregnant?

Some Biological agents are known to cause harm to the foetus, or physical and neurological damage. 

Refer to the HSA Pregnant at Work FAQ for further information about working with Biological Agents. 

What chemical /biological agents are known to endanger the health of pregnant employee and their unborn child(ren)?

 Hazard Statements and associated risks from substances labelled as follows:

  • H340/H341May cause genetic defects/suspected of causing genetic defects
  • H350/H350i/H351May cause cancer/may cause cancer by inhalation/suspected of causing cancer
  • H360/ may damage fertility or the unborn child
  • H360D/ may damage the unborn child
  • H360FD/may damage fertility, may damage the unborn child
  • H360Fd may damage fertility, suspected of damaging the unborn child
  • H360Df may damage the unborn child, suspected of damaging fertility
  • H361 suspected of damaging fertility or the unborn child
  • H361d suspected of damaging the unborn child
  • H361fd suspected of damaging fertility, suspected of damaging the unborn child
  • H362 may cause harm to breast-fed children
  • H370 causes damage to organs
  • H371 may cause damage to organs
  • Substances and mixtures referred to in Schedule 1 (see Appendix 1 for list ) to the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work (Carcinogens) Regulations 2001 (S.I. No. 78 of 2001) (amended by the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work (Carcinogens) (Amendment) Regulations 2015 (S.I. No. 622 of 2015)),
  • Substances and mixtures released by a process referred to in Schedule 1 to the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work (Carcinogens) Regulations 2001 (S.I. No. 78 of 2001) (amended by the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work (Carcinogens) (Amendment) Regulations 2015 (S.I. No. 622 of 2015)),
  • mercury and mercury derivatives,
  • antimitotic (cytotoxic) drugs,
  • carbon monoxide,
  • chemical agents of known and dangerous percutaneous absorption.

I work for long periods at a display screen – is this harmful to my unborn child?

The provisions of the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work (General Application) Regulations 2007, Part 2, Chapter 4, Display Screen Equipment (DSE) apply to all regular users of DSE's. There are no documented risks associated with pregnant employees working with display screen equipment (DSE).

What is Health and Safety Leave?

If a risk is identified, the employer must eliminate the risk/adjust the work. If the employer cannot eliminate the risk, the employee must do the following:

  1. Change or adapt the work practices to eliminate the risk, including changes to shift patterns or work location. ·
  2. Be provided with suitable alternative employment if not possible then:
  3. The employee must be granted Health and Safety Leave in accordance with Section 18 of the Maternity Protection Act, 1994 revised 2004. Health & Safety Leave is 21 paid days off and is only granted if the previous steps cannot be implemented
Mothers Room Procedure (PDF)
 Out of Hours Work 

What is Out of Hours Work in DCU?

The DCU "Out of Hours" Policy permits authorised persons to access their laboratory or office outisde of normal working  hours. 

"Out of Hours" work is defined as follows:

Any laboratory/experimental work taken outside of 9am-6pm Monday - Friday.

Any other work undertaken outside of 7am-10pm Monday - Friday and during the hours of 9am-6pm on Saturday, Sunday or Bank Holidays,

Who is entiled to be in DCU afterhours?

Authorised staff and postgraduate students only are permitted to be in DCU out of hours.

What is an Authorised Person?

An Authorised person is someone who has had:

  1. A risk assessment of their activites completed and documented,
  2. Has gained "out of hours" approval of Academic Supervisor/Head of School/ Unit Manager as appropriate,, 
  3. Has attended safety induction 
  4. Their name has been notified to Security by School/Unit Safety Officer or Head

If I am carrying out experimental practical work in the lab what is 'out of hours'?

'Out of Hours' for experimental / practical work is after 6pm and before 9am Monday – Saturday and 9am – 6pm Saturday & Sunday & Bank Holidays.

If I am in my office or doing computer work only in a lab, what is 'out of hours'?

'Out of Hours' for office work or computer work in a lab is between 10pm and 7am.

How do I "check in" for Out of Hours work?

For high and medium risk work, an authorised person must "check in" using the SafeZone App. 

The university has launched a free app service to give round-the-clock reassurance to staff and students. SafeZone is a simple-to-use application that is free to download from the Apple App store and Google Play. Further details on the app and how to use it are available from the Office of the Chief Operations Officer - Safezone

What is 'lock-up'?

Lock up is a period whereby there is no out of hours access for the safety and security of all on campus. During lock up exceptional access can only be granted with the written permission of the Vice President for Research and notification in advance to Security.

What are lockup hours?

Lock up hours are from 6pm Saturday to 9am Sunday and from 6pm Sunday to 7am on Monday. On a Bank Holiday Monday, lock up hours are as for Sundays.

There will also be lock up hours over the Christmas and Easter periods and these will be notified in advance by Security.

How do I gain access during lock up?

Access during lock up is available in exceptional circumstances only. Written permission must be obtained from the Vice President for Research and notified to Security.

"Check in" on SafeZone is compulsory.

How do I gain access out of hours?

Normally you should be able to gain access to buildings via swipecard or PIN number. Where these do not exist on buildings, please contact Security to gain access.

What are the rules governing computer laboratories?

Computer laboratories may be used by staff, students and visitors up to 10pm Monday - Friday. They may be used on Saturday and Sunday from 9am to 6pm.

Can I let others in 'out of hours'?

You must not let in any other persons into the building 'out of hours'. They must contact Security themselves to gain access.

How do visitors get authorised for after hours access?

Visiting staff or postgraduate students must complete the same process to become an authorised person. Please contact the Academic Supervisor or local Safety Officer in your School/Unit to complete.

If I encounter a problem after hours how do I get help?

Please contact Security on the emergency telephone number (01) 700 5999. If you are unable to reach a phone activate a Fire Alarm Break Glass Unit.

Policy and Procedures for Lone/Out of Hours Working (PDF)

Out of Hours Policy - 'Lock Up' Exceptional Access Request Form (PDF)

Out Of Hours Induction Presentation (PDF)

 First Aid 

Who is responsible for First Aid in DCU?

The DCU Health and Safety Office is responsible for ensuring there are an adequate number of First Aid trained personnel available. The Health and Safety Office will also ensure that the First Aid Cabinets in the foyer of all buildings are kept stocked. 

Procedure for Occupational First Aid and Medical Incident Management

How are First Aid Supplies provided?

DCU Health and Safety Office has engaged an external contractor to check and replenish the First Aid Cabinets in the foyer of all buildings. We ask First Aiders to contact the Health and Safety Office when they use any first aid supplies to ensure First Aid Cabinets restocked. 

DCU Glasnevin Campus First Aid Cabinets Location

DCU All Hallows and St Patrick's Campuses First Aid Cabinets Location

All other First Aid Cabinets, including those in labs and offices, are the responsiblity of the School/Unit. 

How do I get supplies for a local First Aid Box?

DCU Health and Safety Office recommend the following supplier:

Rory Stephens

National First Aid Supplies,

8 Glen Avenue,

The Park, Cabinteely, Dublin 18

Mobile: 086 81 66 016

Phone: 01 2848005

Email: firstaidkits@eircom.net

How do I contact a local First Aider?

A list of qualified First Aiders and their telephone numbers is typically displayed next to the first aid box in the foyer of each building.

If no first-aider is available, call DCU Security on (01 700) 5999.

Where are the Defibrillators?

Location of Defibrillators (All Campuses)

How do I call an ambulance?

Requesting an Ambulance

Non-Emergency Transport to Hospital

Should I report a minor injury?

Yes, report all occupational health and safety incidents if they result in an unplanned, undesired event that adversely affects completion of a task.

First Aid Register

 DCU ALL HALLOWS CAMPUS

NameSchool UnitPhone NumberRoom Number
Richard JonesEstates Office700 7094
Leonard StaffordRestaurant Restaurant
Sylwia KaminskaEstates Office700 5800Reception Desk
Akakansha MethaInternational Office700 7411
Laura MasteikaiteCampus Residence700 5736
 

DCU ST PATRICK'S CAMPUS

NameSchool UnitPhone NumberRoom Number
Derek BrennanEstates Office 884 2027D121
Bernadette ReidEstates Office884 2145Gate Lodge
Conor SullivanInstitute of Education884 2183F346
Valerie McLoughlinEducational Disadvantage Centre                                                       884 2021Mov06
Maelíosa GriffinArts, Education & Movement884 2289F123
Michele SomersSTEM Education, Innovation & Global Studies884 2150C406B
Lucinda JacobLibrary884 2179Library
Nuala MurrayLibrary884 2383Library
Laura Elena CiutaTrispace Restaurant
Laura MasteikaiteCampus Residence700 5736

DCU GLASNEVIN CAMPUS

 

Block A – Albert College

NameSchool UnitPhone NumberRoom Number
Declan RafteryOffice of the Chief Operations Officer5117A201A
David KellyFinance77462nd Floor

Block B – Invent

NameSchool UnitPhone NumberRoom Number
Helen BurkeResearch8003 
Patrick CoffeyPDST8380 
Maeve FreemanInvent Reception7777 

Block C/CA – Henry Grattan/Extension

NameSchool UnitPhone NumberRoom Number
Genevieve QuinnISS8097 Henry Grattan Extesion
Claire BohanStudent Support & Dev5164Student Advice Centre
Amanda KavanaghHealth & Safety Office8678CG10
Philip DaughenHealth & Safety Office7035CG10

Block D – Bea Orpen

NameSchool UnitPhone NumberRoom Number
Aisling DeignanOpen Education8384D300

Block E – Estates Office/Security

NameSchool UnitPhone NumberRoom Number
Ray WheatleySecurity8015 
Seamus KeatingSecurity8990 
Eddie HamiltonSecurity5999 
Paddy NoonanSecurity5999 
Liam GaughranSecurity8990 
Paul MullenSecurity8990 
Rory O'DonoghueSecurity8990 
Cormac CartySecurity8990 
Bernard KeoghSecurity8990 
Brendan HowardSecurity8990 
Gerard McGeeSecurity5141 
Mary WhelanEstates Office5242
Richard Jones Estates Office 8901

Block G - NICB

NameSchool UnitPhone NumberRoom Number
Paula MeleadyNICB5910GG12
Gillian SmithNICB8806GG01
Alex EustaceNICBG1067497

Block GA - NRF

NameSchool UnitPhone NumberRoom Number
Maurice BurkeScience & Health7605GA108A
Una PrendergastNRF6296GA108
Barry O'ConnellNRF6292GA108
Leah NolanNRF7565GA108

 Block H –School of Nursing&Human Sciences

NameSchool UnitPhone NumberRoom Number
Evelyn KelleherSchool of Nursing8536H122E
Michael BurkeScience & Health51103rd Floor
Tracey HarringtonSchool of Nursing7153H1221

Block J – Hamiliton Building

NameSchool UnitPhone NumberRoom Number
Paul BarhamBiounite5949JG07

Block K- Students Union/Hub

NameSchool UnitPhone NumberRoom Number
Sandra McCormackOffice of Student Life5392 
Una RedmondOffice of Student Life5280K121

Block L – McNulty Building

NameSchool UnitPhone NumberRoom Number
Sean HaranComputing8703L105
Jim DoyleComputing5350L106
Gillian MoriartyEngineering & Computing    8487L115
Jonny HobsonGraduate Studies Office      5136LG13

Block M – Inter Faith Centre

Name:School Unit:Phone Number:Room Number:

 

Inter-Faith Centre

 

 

Block N – Marconi Building

NameSchool UnitPhone NumberRoom Number
Alan HughesPhysics5271N102
Pat WoganPhysics5275N221
Lisa PeytonPhysics5306N144
Henry BarryPhysics5520NG23
Amy HallInsight6872N207
Liam DomicanEngineering8365N110

Block PG-Pavilon

NameSchool UnitPhone NumberRoom Number
Orla DunneCTYI7051PG04

Block PR – Restaurant

NameSchool UnitPhone NumberRoom Number
Teresa LeeperMain Restaurant5550 
Ombreta OprisanMain Restaurant5550 
Andrei HutanMain Restaurant5550 
Cristina elena PetcuMain Restaurant5550 

Block Q-Business School

NameSchool UnitPhone NumberRoom Number
Malolcm BradyDCUBS5188Q143
Muriel KeeganDCUBS5538Q108

Block QA – MacCormac Building

NameSchool UnitPhone NumberRoom Number
    

Block S – Stokes Building

NameSchool UnitPhone NumberRoom Number
    
Robert ClareElec/Eng5867S142
Conor MaguireElec/Eng8320S142
Michael MayMech/Eng8885SB13
Dean McLoughlinMech/Eng8238SB18
Josephine OzoaniNCSR7712S101
Lorcan KentBDI6305S103
Tom GlennonFraunhofer Projectnana
Jonathan LoftusFraunhofer Project

Block V – Campus Residences

NameSchool UnitPhone NumberRoom Number
Eddie HamiltonCampus Residence (Security)7812 
Oleg VereshchynskyyCampus Residence (Security)7812 
David DoyleCampus Residence 8037 
Rory O'TooleCampus Residence5952
Jayde EamesCampus Residence5736
Silvia Garces ZorillaCampus Residence5736
Nikolai HominCampus Residence5736
Laura MasteikaiteCampus Residence5736
Gabriela MiskolciCampus Residence5736
Mairead McGarryCampus Residence5736
Irina MartinovaCampus Residence5736

Block VB – Residences

NameSchool UnitPhone NumberRoom Number
Ian O'ReillyDCULS5475VGG08
Dimitra StefanopolousDCULS8066VBG01
Stephen RyanDCULS8066VBG01

Block X – Lonsdale Building

NameSchool UnitPhone NumberRoom Number
Teresa CooneyBiotechnology8039/5138XG-46
Janice CunninghamBiotechnology8039/5138XG-46
Deirdre CurtinBiotechnology8039/5138XG-46
Javier MonedoroHealth & Human Performance8471XB-28
Enda MurphyHealth & Human Performance8474XB-28
Vincent HooperChemical Science5111/5476XG-28
Catherine KeoghChemical Science5906/5476X161/XG28
Gary LawrenceICNT7689X243
Mary RafterBiotechnology5284X216

Block Y – Library

NameSchool UnitPhone NumberRoom Number
Paraic ElliottLibrary5041 
Grace O'ConnorLibrary8753/5209 
Sharon RyanLibrary5041 
Andrei HutanTrispace8743Zero 1 Restaurant
Manual Handling

Manual Handling 

Manual handling of "loads” means any transporting or supporting of a load by one or more employees and includes lifting, putting down, pushing, pulling, carrying or moving a load, which, by reason of its characteristics or of unfavourable ergonomic conditions, involves risk, particularly of back injury, to employees - S.I. No. 299/2007 - Safety, Health and Welfare at Work (General Applications) Regulations 2007

What are the present weight limits for Manual Handling?

There is no longer a prescribed maximum weigh for lifting for either men or women.

The weight of the load needs to be considered in relation to a number of other risk factors such as the:

  1. actions and movements
  2. working posture and position when lifting
  3. duration and frequency of manual handling
  4. location of loads and the distances moved
  5. characteristics of the load

Young workers under the age of 18 years should not be required to lift, lower or carry more than 16 kg without mechanical or other assistance and/or particular training for the task

Contact the DCU Health and Safety Office for a Manual Handling Risk Assessment Template. 

Health and Safety Authority Manual Handling FAQ

Display Screen Equipment

Display screen equipment” means any alphanumeric or graphic display screen, regardless of the display process involved. (Chapter 5, S.I. No. 299/2007 - Safety, Health and Welfare at Work (General Applications) Regulations 2007)

“Workstation” means an assembly comprising display screen equipment, which may be provided with a keyboard or input device or software, or a combination of the foregoing determining the operator and machine interface, and includes:

  • a work chair and work desk or work surface,
  • any optional accessories and peripherals, and
  • the immediate work environment of the display screen equipment.

Contact the Health & Safety Office to request a 1:1 ergonomic risk assessment if you encounter problems.

Health and Safety Authority DSE FAQ

DSE Self Assessment Checklist 

Legionella Management

Legionnaires' disease is a type of pneumonia caused by legionella bacteria. You usually get it by breathing in mist from water that contains the bacteria. The mist may come from plumbing systems (taps or showers), hot water tanks, jacuzzis etc. The bacteria particularly like warm stagnant water. 

There is no evidence of person-to-person transmission. 

There are on average about 10 cases of Legionnaires Disease reported each year in Ireland. It effects all ages but it is more commonly seen in people over the age of 50, people with chronic illness, smokers, heavy drinkers and people with weakened immune systems.

Symptoms of Legionnaires' disease include fever, chills, and a cough that may be dry or wet.  Some patients have muscle aches, headache, tiredness, and loss of appetite. Legionnaires' disease is treated with antibiotics.

Legionnaires' disease can be prevented through routine maintenance of water systems and minimising water stagnation.

For further information please contact DCU Health and Safety Office.

DCU Legionella Control Plan (PDF)

 Frequently Asked Questions

Where can I find out about health and safety in DCU?

The DCU Framework Safety Statement provides an overview of health and safety in DCU and provides information on the management of common hazards throughout the University. In addition, each School, Unit and Campus Company maintains their own `local' Safety Statement which addresses their particular areas of activity.

Who is responsible for safety in DCU?

Overall responsibility for health and safety on campus lies with DCU Governing Authority and the DCU President.

The DCU Framework Safety Statement indicates that responsibility for health and safety is delegated through all levels of management and that all campus users are responsible to some extent for health and safety on campus.

How can I find out about my responsibilities?

Consult Section 3 of the DCU Framework Safety Statement

Who should I contact about specific health & safety concerns in DCU?

If your concern is related to a particular School or Unit, you should raise the issue initially with the Head of School / Unit. If the issue relates to the condition/fabric of a building, you should contact the Estates Office.

You can also raise issues through the Safety Consultation Group or the University Safety Representative - see Section 3.8 of the DCU Framework Safety Statement, or directly with the Health and Safety Office safety@dcu.ie

Injuries and Incidents

How can I get first aid assistance?

Trained First Aiders are available during office hours on all campuses.

The entrance hall / foyer of each building has a listing of First Aiders and their phone numbers. After 5pm the DCU Security Team can provide assistance - dial (01) 700 5999

How do I report an injury/incident or near miss?

DCU Accident Report Form

When possible, all injuries/incidents must be reported to a DCU staff member. The following general guide applies:

  • If you are a student, you should report to your Head of School.
  • If you are a staff member you should report to your supervisor.
  • If you are a visitor to campus you should report to your DCU host or to a staff member.

What happens after I've reported an injury/incident or near miss?

The Health and Safety Office will investigate the accident and may contact you for further information or details.

Will DCU refund out of pocket expenses I incur as a result of an occupational injury?

In certain circumstances the Health and Safety Office can authorise repayment of receipted expenses. Contact the DCU Health and Safety on 01 700 8678 for information. 

Do DCU have an Employee Assistance Program (EAP)?

Yes, refer to DCU EAP Webpage