By Wayne Heiser
SLAC has embarked on an ambitious effort to revise
its Environment, Safety, and Health Manual, one the Lab’s principal
safety documents. This will be the first complete revision of the manual
since it was first published in 1991 and will involve producing more
than 40 subject-specific chapters, covering everything from the overall
ES&H program at SLAC to specifics such as excavation safety, hazardous
materials management, and stormwater pollution prevention.
Timing of Chapter Release
The plan is to complete this work in three phases,
beginning with program basics (chapters 1, 2, and 31—‘General Policy and
Responsibilities’, ‘Work Authorization’ and ‘Institutional ES&H
Committees’), then high-priority hazard specific chapters, and finally
the remaining chapters.
The first phase was completed in October, in time
for the DOE review of our integrated safety management system (ISMS).
The second phase is to be completed by the end of December and the third
by the end of December 2006.
Who is Participating
The chapters are being written by subject matter
experts and stakeholders from across SLAC. To ensure all SLAC personnel
have a voice, each chapter will go through a four-phase formal review
process, including stakeholder and site-wide reviews followed by
approval by the ES&H division director and chief operating officer, then
final approval by the ES&H Coordinating Council.
Comments and responses are captured and a permanent
record created by an on-line review and comment system jointly developed
by the ES&H Knowledge Management Department and Technical Publications,
available for input by all SLAC personnel (see: https://www-internal.slac.stanford.edu/esh/docreview/).
For now, the system is being used only for the site-wide review, but we
plan to extend it to all review phases.
All SLAC personnel can participate in site-wide
reviews by using this system. In addition, an e-mail notification of any
new chapter for review is sent to staff selected by the subject matter
expert, ES&H division director and each directorate’s ES&H coordinator,
Approved chapters are posted on the ES&H web site
(in What’s New and on the manual page itself, http://www-group.slac.stanford.edu/esh/manuals/eshmanual.html)
announced in SLAC Today as well as in an e-mail sent to all supervisors,
safety coordinators and building managers.
Using a New Approach
Each chapter is being written following a new
standard outline, intended to make both writing and using chapters
easier. Based on a benchmark survey (https://www-internal.slac.stanford.edu/esh/working/manual/manual_doe_survey.pdf)
of practices at other DOE facilities, the new outline features a common
set of required content (overview, scope, standards, definitions,
requirements, exhibits, references and ownership).
In addition, the outline is designed to arrange the
content in a more flexible way. An important example is the use of
separate documents—called ‘exhibits’—for procedures, guidelines and
specific requirements intended for line management and staff.
Preparing for the Future
Although it may not be noticeable just yet, the new
process and outline are designed to make the manual a more dynamic,
complete and current collection of content that more fully exploits the
power of the web and dovetails with the overall effort to improve the
Making SLAC Safer
Finally, beyond the schedules, plans and outlines,
remember the goal of this effort is to make SLAC safer by improving our
understanding of the hazards we face and how we respond to them. So
please keep an eye out for chapters that are under review and newly
published. See the manual page, http://www-group.slac.stanford.edu/esh/manuals/eshmanual.html
for current chapters, schedule and a link to the review system.
Let us know if you have any questions or comments,
by sending e-mail to
firstname.lastname@example.org. Be sure to include the phrase ‘ESH
manual’ in the subject line.