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Department of Archaeology

Health and Safety

This page contains a summary for all members of the Department and guests of Department of Archaeology Health and Safety policy; which can be found here. All people within the Department are advised to familiarise themselves with the full document.

The aim of the policy, so far as is reasonably practicable, is to provide sufficient information in order to facilitate the creation of a safe working environment for all staff, students and visitors. In addition the Department will also help achieve this by doing the following:

  • Provide adequate financial and staff resources to maintain a safe and healthy working environment
  • Provide such information, instruction, training and supervision as is necessary to ensure the Health and Safety of staff, students and visitors
  • Regularly review and audit Health and Safety in the Department.

The policy applies to the activities conducted by staff and students both within the Department and at other locations (e.g. fieldwork). In addition, all staff and students must abide by the University Safety Policy, which can be found here and the university’s safety statement which can be found here

Disclaimer: The information presented in these pages is summarised and for general guidance only. It is not meant to be a replacement for training or familiarising yourself with existing Departmental or University policies. Please check back here on a regular basis to familiarise yourselves with updated information.

The following is a summary of the general Departmental local rules with regards to Health and Safety, please refer to the specific policy documents linked for detailed information.

The Dawson Building is a No Smoking area and this includes the area extending to 10m beyond the perimeter of the building, in particular those adjacent to entrances. See here for the FAQ on University smoking rules.

No individual should conduct laboratory or practical work, before 8.30am or after 5.30pm, at weekends, or during University closed periods without formal permission from the Laboratory Manager or the Head of Department. In such cases two people must be in the laboratory throughout the work period.

If you are working in the Dawson building outside of the normal working hours then you must fill in the ‘sign in book’ located inside the main entrance to the building. No work is to be done in the building between the hours of 10pm and 7am.

The Risk Assessment form is provided by the Department to assist staff and students when appraising the Health and Safety risks of any practical activities they undertake. All staff and students undertaking teaching and research projects such as undergraduate or postgraduate dissertations, excavations or experiments are required to complete a Risk Assessment form to formally appraise the risks. It is the duty of each member of staff to ensure that such forms are completed with any person for whom he/she has managerial or supervisory responsibilities. Those projects where a significant risk is identified must be approved by the Head of Department or authorised deputy, before the work proceeds. A copy of each completed Risk Assessment form must be held by the Departmental Office.


Guidance, including advice on when to use Viator, can be found here.

Students involved in individual fieldwork or travel relating to their research in the department must complete a Fieldwork / fieldtrip approval and risk assessment and submit it. If the work is for a staff led field trip then the member of staff responsible must complete this. However, if the work is for a student research project/dissertation, the student must complete the form.

All laboratories in the Dawson building are subject to local rules. Students are responsible for familiarising themselves with these local rules and abiding by them. Before any work is undertaken in the laboratories the consent of the designated Manager must be obtained. If necessary a Task Based Risk Assessment form and/or COSHH Assessment form must be completed before work commences. It is essential that the lab Manager is aware of all the activities being undertaken in that laboratory/facility.

For all Lab related enquires please contact the relevant lab technician
Steve Robertson (email: / phone: ext 41574)
Beth Upex (email: / phone: ext 41085).

More information on what to do regarding lab work can be found in the Departmental Lab Work Policy.

If you discover a fire you should the fire alarm. When the Fire Alarm is heard (a continuous siren) you must immediately evacuate the building by the safest direct route and not re-enter the building until directed by a Fire Brigade Officer, the Departmental Health and Safety Coordinator or Head of Department. A departmental fire practice is held annually. 

If you have an accident and are injured as a result please see your nearest first aider in the first instance. The qualified First Aiders within the Department are as follows:

Dawson Building

Penny Wilson

Kamal Badreshany

Tina Jakob

Beth Upex

Green Lane

Duncan Hale

Richard Annis

Mark Randerson

In addition, it is a legal requirement to report all accidents resulting in personal injury, including accidents during fieldwork. All accidents regardless of whether injury occurs must be the notified to the Accident Reporting Officer (i.e. the Health and Safety Coordinator) and recorded using an Accident Form (found in the departmental office). All incidents which have the potential to cause injury, and all fires which involve the raising of the fire alarm or the use of a fire extinguisher must be reported in the Fire/Fire Alarm/Incident Report Book.
Location of First Aid Boxes:- · Room 112, Sample Preparation Laboratory · Room 131, Environmental laboratory · Room 129, Isotope Laboratory · Room 136, Luminescence Lobby · Room 115, DNA Laboratory · Pantry, next to Room 206, Reception and Enquiries · Room 233, Conservation Teaching Laboratory · A box is also available for short-term loan in the Dept. Office.