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Reporting Hazardous Conditions

Purpose and Scope

The University of Tennessee (UT) recognizes the need to provide a method for employees to report potential health and safety hazards or concerns. All reported concerns will be addressed, investigated and corrective measures taken when necessary. Employees are free from retaliatory or disciplinary actions for reporting safety concerns.

No employee shall be discharged or discriminated against because such employee has filed any complaint or instituted or caused to be instituted any proceedings or inspections under, or relating, to this program.

For the purposes of this document the phrase “safety hazard” shall also include health hazard and environmental hazard. In addition, near misses or non-injury accidents are covered by the standard.

New employees shall be informed of the process of reporting hazards during orientation.

Procedures

  • All safety hazards should be reported to the employee’s immediate supervisor as soon as possible. Work within the department to resolve the issue, if possible. Supervisors are encouraged to contact Environmental Health and Safety if there is no clear solution or if additional guidance is needed.
  • If the matter cannot be adequately addressed, the individual may contact Environmental Health and Safety (EHS) or Risk Management.
  • Safety concerns may be reported by telephone, fax, e-mail, written letter or in person to any EHS staff member (can complete the Service Request form found in Appendix A), or by completing the Incident Report form provided by Risk Management (see Appendix B).
  • Safety, occupational health hazards or environmental concerns may be e-mailed to: safety@utk.edu.
  • Concerns may be reported confidentially and should be so indicated when reporting. Every effort shall be made to protect the identity of the person making the complaint.
  • EHS shall log reported workplace hazard complaints. Quarterly reports of reported safety hazards shall be included on the EHS quarterly metric.
  • EHS shall address the concern in a timely manner and take appropriate action.
  • A record of communiques and associated information shall be maintained in the building file by EHS for at least three years.
  • Feedback and updates shall be submitted to the individual filing the complaint if a request it made.
  • All near misses (also known as a close call or non-injury accident) should be reported in a manner similar to other hazards.

{see Reporting Hazards and Near Misses in the Safety Manual}

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