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As the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak continues to evolve, the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, has launched a comprehensive resource for students, faculty, staff, and visitors. For the latest information visit utk.edu/coronavirus

EHS Operations during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Response

Note: this message is cross-posted to EHS, Biosafety and Radiation Safety

EHS is up and running

To achieve social distancing our EHS team members to the greatest extent possible are working remotely. The EHS team continues to be available to provide you technical assistance and other support services as needed. EHS phone numbers and emails are in service and monitored. Select EHS staff are integrated into the UT Emergency Operations Center. We will reevaluate staffing and scheduling as more is known about the contingency plans.

Lab Safety Services (LSS) is continuing to serve researchers

Lab Safety Services (LSS) staff are working remotely. If a need for in-person attendance is necessary, LSS members will respond as requested.

Hazardous Waste Management

EHS staff will be available, at a minimum, Fridays for waste turn-in and biowaste disposal. Instructions for the turn-in process as well as times and locations will be distributed by Mike Rotella, Hazardous Waste Program Manager. We will update the Hazardous Waste schedule as changes are made.

Receiving Help

Urgent Needs, Reporting Hazards/Conditions or Requesting General Assistance

Contact EHS One-Call 865-974-9586 or submit your request through “LiveSafe – Report Other Issue – Lab Safety



Please continue to follow Risk Management protocols for reporting work-related injuries/illnesses and occurrences w/potential property damage. 865-974-5409 or riskmanagement@tennessee.edu

In the event that the EHS One-Call number is unanswered please contact:

  • 911 for emergencies
  • EHS Director and Campus Safety Officer Sandra Prior 757-876-5386 (cell) for non-emergencies.

IBC Announcements

To view a current schedule of IBC Meetings, go to https://calendar.utk.edu/department/biosafety_program.

Amendments, MTAs, and New Registrations must be submitted by the first business day of the month to be considered by IBC and they must be submitted via the IBC iMedRIS module. (For more information click here). Submission and prior approval of IBC protocols does not mean future approval, and to please allow ample time for an appropriate risk assessment to be performed by the committee.

The IBC Annual Report for FY2018 is available here.

IBC iMedRIS Training

Need help submitting your registration or just don’t know where to get started? Sign up for our one-on-one training sessions. Each session is approximately 30 minutes and we work with you to schedule a time that is convenient for your busy schedule.

Click here to sign up.

The primary objective of the UT Biosafety Program is to ensure a safe working environment for faculty, staff and students.

In pursuit of this goal, our office ensures that laboratory facilities and operations conform to the regulatory requirements as set by the Institutional Biosafety Committee (IBC) of the University of Tennessee, the state of Tennessee and federal agencies such as the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

To mitigate the inherent risks associated with the laboratory setting, we seek to build a culture of safe work practices at the university. To do so, we provide a variety of educational opportunities to those involved in the investigation of biological activities in the form of classroom and online training sessions as well as informational modules found within this website.

Our office also seeks to facilitate collaborative outreach between investigators at the University of Tennessee and the larger academic community. To this end, we provide support and training for all areas of shipping and permitting for the import and export of biological materials.

Finally, our office provides a route to properly dispose of both biologically hazardous and regulated medical wastes through our contracted disposal servicer.