October 5, 2003  


Director’s Corner

By Jonathan Dorfan

(Photo by Diana Rogers)

Protection of human and environmental health is of the utmost importance at SLAC. One of the cornerstones of our Mission is: "Maintaining excellence in matters of environmental concern and providing for the safety and health of the SLAC staff, users and the general public." We achieve this in many ways, guided by an experience base which has led to codified rules and behaviors for safe and protective practices.

Here at SLAC, we comply with Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) safety rules. These rules have been historically enforced internally through oversight by the DOE. Recently, Congress has been investigating the cost and benefits of shifting 10 research labs, including SLAC, to external control under OSHA itself. Consequently, OSHA will visit each lab and thoroughly evaluate differences between OSHA and DOE administration to develop a cost analysis for a possible transition to external regulation.

OSHA’s visit to SLAC is scheduled for sometime in late January or early February 2004 and will likely be the largest and most exhaustive safety audit since the Tiger Team days. Five to ten OSHA personnel will inspect SLAC wall-to-wall for up to two weeks. Though the inspection is primarily for cost assessment and no fines or corrective measures are to be established, we want to be sure that the strengths of SLAC’s OSHA program are clearly visible to the auditors.

SLAC has prepared an OSHA Readiness Program which will aid in our goal of exemplary OSHA compliance. In addition to the creation of a Readiness Task Force headed by Jack Hahn, we also examined our facilities from the OSHA prospective and compiled lists of possible enhancements that should be considered in each area and by each person. The list is divided into two parts: a facility conditions list aimed at line managers and an employee activity list for supervisors and employees. All SLAC workers should familiarize themselves with these lists and follow the applicable guidelines therein. (See: https://www-internal.slac.stanford.edu/esh/extreg/)

With your cooperation we can demonstrate to OSHA our ongoing commitment to maintaining SLAC as a healthy, safe and productive research institution. A world class laboratory like SLAC needs world class safety standards in order to continue our tradition of excellence in all areas of achievement. I thank you in advance for your help in making this a successful process.


The Stanford Linear Accelerator Center is managed by Stanford University for the US Department of Energy

Last update Thursday October 02, 2003 by Kathy B