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University of Cambridge >  Nanoscience Laboratory Intranet > Safety Information > Lone Working & Buddy Policy

Safe Operating Procedure - Lone Working & Buddy System

It is sometimes necessary for researchers to be in the laboratory or office on their own. This may be out of normal working hours.
Outside normal hours is defined as before 8am or after 6pm on weekdays, and any time at weekends or times of closure.

Hazards and Risks

The hazards associated with the work remain the same as when working with others. Do not work alone if you are tired and unable to concentrate on your work properly.

Correct procedure and control measures

You must have a 'buddy' with you if you plan to work in the clean rooms or wet chemistry lab. The buddy doesn’t have to be working in the same room as you, but is someone who is specifically aware of what you are doing, and will remain in the building until you have finished. The buddy should check on you at half-hourly intervals.

If you plan on working over thr weekend you can put your name on the 'buddy boards' located by the wet room and clean rooms. This will allow users to ensure a buddy will be present while they are working.

No working with Hydrofluoric acid out of hours. No working alone with cryogenic liquids or class 3B & 4 lasers out of hours.
Working on equipment such as the FIB is acceptable on your own up to 12pm. Office work alone is acceptable up to 12pm.
No work is permitted after 12pm weekdays or weekends. Equipment may be left running overnight, a note should be displayed on the door to the room the equipment is in with directions on how to shut down in an emergency. Download a form here.

Emergency Action

In the event of an injury which requires first aid treatment ring central security 31818.
Be aware that it may take longer than usual to obtain a first aider, not all security staff are first aid trained.

last updated 10-06-2009