UNION-MANAGEMENT SAFETY COMMITTEE
November 2023 Meeting Minutes
The monthly meeting of the Union-Management Safety Committee was conducted on November 14th, 2023 by the Environmental Health and Safety department with the following individuals in attendance:
Josh Balfour A Dining Services
Kathy Cain-Babbitt A AFSCME
Kelly Duncan A Landscape Services
Cory Ghiringhelli A Environmental Health and Safety
Mark Heeres A Dining Services
Darrel Junkins A Landscape Services
Justin Keech A Custodial Services
Pat Lem A Maintenance Services
Keith Pung A Environmental Health and Safety
Vince Renda A Maintenance Services
Juanita Snell A Custodial Services
Laura Weber VA Legal Affairs, Risk, and Compliance
Jake Woods A Environmental Health and Safety
In-Person Attendance: (A)
Virtual Attendance: (VA)
Pat Lem provided an update to the safety concern involving damaged concrete located at the Student Recreation Center loading dock. A trip and fall hazard is present due to the deteriorated walking surface materials. Pat investigated and submitted information to the Facilities Management Service Center; work order #LN-100775 was created/issued to the Landscape Services department. November committee discussions revolved around whether temporary repairs would be possible prior to the winter season.
Jake Woods shared an update to the safety concern regarding significant damage to the concrete sidewalk located adjacent to Lawson Drive on the vehicle bridge. A trip and fall hazard is present due the damaged materials. Jake investigated and brought the situation to the attention of Facilities Management and Landscape Services management. The area of damaged materials was added to their list of campus areas requiring repair and FM Engineering was also made aware due to the proximity to the vehicle/pedestrian bridge.
Jake Woods previously shared an update from Devin Johnson regarding the safety concern involving interior lighting at Miller Auditorium. It was previously mentioned that some lighting fixtures had been found to be nonworking or randomly having issues; these include areas such as bathrooms and other spaces without windows. Jake stated that a Maintenance Services electrician investigated and believed they were able to track down the root cause. The situation was likely caused by electrical routing that had been made off of the emergency lighting circuit. Necessary changes were made and the system should now be working properly. It was mentioned during October committee discussions that flickering lights were observed as recently as the previous week. The business item was left open until the November meeting; issues did not re-occur.
Jake Woods previously shared an update from Devin Johnson regarding the safety concern involving the main entry doors, facing Sangren Hall, at the Student Center that had been observed to close very quickly and open more difficult than expected. It was mentioned that a third-party door repair contractor, Assa Abloy, was recently on campus completing exterior door preventative maintenance; while onsite they also serviced the Student Center doors in question. The business item was left open until the November meeting; issues did not re-occur.
Jake Woods previously shared an update from Keith Pung regarding the safety issue involving a suspected sinking storm water drain that is located in the parking lot near the #2415 Western View Apartment building. It had been previously stated that the asphalt near the drain is damaged and crumbling; the primary concern is a possibility of snow removal efforts causing further damage. Keith investigated and brought the situation to the attention of FM-Engineering and Parking Services. An assessment performed found that the storm water drain system was in good-intact condition. Parking Services were in the process of coordinating repairs to the damaged asphalt that surrounds the storm drain. The business item was left open until the November meeting; issues did not re-occur.
Vince Renda previously reintroduced safety concerns with The Student Center centrally located seating-stair feature. He mentioned that installation of an upper guardrail would increase safety for users of the facility. Improvements for hard of seeing individuals should also be considered; a small rumble-type strip is present delineating the unprotected edges. EHS and committee members will investigate and follow up with the building coordinator if/when personal injuries related to the seating-stair system arise. Laura Weber mentioned that the University’s property insurance inspector recently had assessed the building feature in question and found it to be compliant with current building code(s).
Justin Keech previously expressed a safety concern regarding work practices in the Custodial Services Special Projects group. Justin mentioned that a member of the team recently sustained a repetitive motion injury and a contributing factor is believed to be the workload not being evenly distributed amongst the group members. Rotation of stressful and/or difficult work duties are not evenly distributed; there has been conflict with trying to rotate tasks amongst the multiple-person group. It was also mentioned during committee discussions that their supervisor has not been engaged enough with the group and has put in minimal effort in trying to resolve said concerns. Justin is proceeding with a different avenue to help resolve the issue; committee discussions encouraged personnel to not perform tasks that are suspected of being unsafe/dangerous.
Jake Woods shared an update regarding damage to the concrete curtain surrounding the French-style stormwater drain located in parking lot #16 (University Arena). A trip and fall hazard is present due the damaged materials and open gap that is present. Jake Woods investigated and brought the situation to the attention of Facilities Management, who then forwarded to Parking Services since they are the party responsible for repairs.
Jake Woods shared an update regarding changes to parking lot #27 (Moore Hall). Employee parking is no longer allowed in the lot due to nearby construction projects. The parking lot was heavily used by Custodial Services personnel who support the building and utilize the site as a clock in/out location. Committee discussions indicated that employees are now using the Miller Auditorium parking ramp and then walking to the building. Personnel were concerned if their pedestrian route is known to Landscape Services and if it could be included in the early-morning snow clearing schedule. Jake Woods investigated and brought the situation to the attention of Landscape Services and Custodial Services management. Landscape Services was appreciative of the information and intended on adding the travel pattern to their early morning snow clearing schedule.
Josh Balfour expressed concerns regarding degradation of paint on a drivable curb located near the Valley Dining Center loading dock. The curb had been painted to alert pedestrians and passenger vehicles of its presence. The paint has since worn off and instances of passenger vehicles driving over and potentially incurring damage have been observed; particularly during move-in week. Josh will submit a work order to the Facilities Management Service Center and/or contact Parking Services directly.
Juanita Snell shared a safety concern involving a metal walking platform that is located at the loading dock of the Student Center. The elevated metal walkway connects the loading dock to a nearby trash dumpster and has been observed by the building custodians to be slippery, particularly when wet. Committee discussions recommended installation of non-slip tape or other coating material to increase traction and prevent the likelihood of a slip and fall accident. Juanita will submit a work order to the Facilities Management Service Center.
Juanita Snell questioned whether the exterior, inclined, cement walkway located in between Wood Hall and the Chemistry Building is going to be closed during the winter season, as it has been in years past. Darrel Junkins will investigate and provide a follow up.
Vince Renda introduced a safety concern involving overhead lighting at the intersection of Valley 2 Dr. and Ring Road N. Vince stated that the lighting systems appeared to be in working condition but are not providing enough illumination to the pedestrian cross walk. He mentioned that there had been some recent close call incidents involving student pedestrians and Maintenance Services vehicles due to not being able to see dark clothed persons. Jake Woods will investigate and provide a follow up.
Darrell Junkins shared that Landscape Services personnel recently attended annual hearing conservation training that was conducted by the EHS department.
Vince Renda mentioned that he had investigated the granite slab walkway located in between Sangren Hall and the Student Center. He found that the granite slab materials were course in nature and that applying an anti-slip coating would have a negligible affect with regards to traction during inclement weather events.
Jake Woods shared that the National Safety Council recognizes November as Winter Weather Safety Preparation Month. This is an annual observance held each year highlighting awareness that winter storms create a higher risk of car accidents, hypothermia, frostbite, carbon monoxide poisoning, and heart attacks from overexertion. Winter storms including blizzards can bring extreme cold, freezing rain, snow, ice and high winds. Further information can be found at: https://www.ready.gov/winter-weather.
The next UMSC meeting will be held on Tuesday, December 12th, 2023 in the shared conference room located on the ground floor of the E.W. Building at 10:00 a.m.; an invitation to attend via video conferencing platform (WebEx) will also be sent out with these minutes. Please send a substitute representative if you are unable to attend.