Rice University Field Safety

Mount St. Helens
Silas Little Experimental Forest
Antartica peninsula

Field Safety Planning

Rice University has a variety of programs — both research and educational — that require field activities. These range from short trips within Houston to ventures that are in remote and isolated places around the world. The Field Safety Planning Tool (Word, PDF) was created to identify the full range of issues that may arise in an off-campus setting. When planning a trip, this Tool should be used appropriately for the planned destination and activities, keeping in mind that safety of participants should be considered in all dimensions (including any known risks not specified in this document). Links to relevant Rice offices and resources as well as other organizations and agencies are included in the Field Safety Planning Tool.

Department/School Field Safety Policy

In addition to use of the Planning Tool, departments / schools may develop individual policies (Rice University Policy No. 101, “University Policy Development and Management”) that apply to off-campus activities and field safety issues. These policies can be generated by departments / schools and approved by the Responsible Official (in this case, Chair or Dean) to carry out matters that relate to the department. These polices do not require presidential approval, although they must be consistent with all applicable university policies and procedures. Such a policy would define the parameters for preparation and behavior expected for the specific activities in which departmental / school personnel participate. A draft example approved by the Chief Compliance Officer, who oversees policies, is provided. Further advice can be obtained from Risk Management, the Chief Compliance Officer, or the Office of Research.