The University of Iowa

Services during COVID-19 response

Environmental Health and Safety Office services as campus ramp-up begins:

EHS is operating hazardous waste collections for labs who have continued to generate waste throughout the pandemic shutdown.  Now that departments are beginning to ramp up, we are ready to resume our regular chemical and radioactive waste collection schedule as buildings reopen.  The schedule will include regular weekly/biweekly stops in addition to requests received through the Chemical Waste or Radioactive Waste Pickup Request forms. This means that waste pickups will be conducted following the regular schedule.

Biohazardous waste collection is normally serviced by Stericycle or EHS, Monday through Friday. EHS will be monitoring loading docks and service will resume as needed.  If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Jim Pyrz 335-4625 or Tim Weber 335-4626.

EHS radiation safety staff are staggering on-campus schedules and are continuing to service campus.  Staff are maintaining package delivery to laboratories and responding to other service requests.

The remaining EHS staff who are working remotely can be contacted through email and phone calls.  Staff will return to campus, when needed; please contact the EHS staff member to set up an appointment.  When responding in person, EHS staff will wear a face shield and practice social distancing.  If there are additional building requirements, we ask that EHS staff are informed of these ahead of time to allow us to meet these requirements, if applicable.  

Will EHS provide controlled substance disposal assistance?

Yes, EHS is again offering assistance with controlled substances disposal. If you have controlled substances that require disposal please contact Bill Murray 335-4624 to schedule an appointment.

Will EHS conduct compliance reviews?

Beginning in September 2020, EHS will resume all inspections. Most lab and shop annual reviews will consist of a self-inspection and virtual meeting. In instances where on-location reviews are required or requested, EHS staff will limit face-to-face interactions and will practice social distancing as much as possible. For further questions related to reviews, please see the Lab Review Process.

Industrial hygiene requests and exposure monitoring for immediate health hazards will continue; monitoring for any research that will be postponed during the pandemic response will be rescheduled. 

Is EHS staff available for respirator fit testing?

Yes, staff should contact Evgenia Borisenko, EHS Chemical Safety Coordinator, at or 467-1007.

What happened to the Pandemic Influenza Dust Mask - W451OS course?

This course is not applicable to the COVID-19 pandemic.  Please take the course from this list that corresponds to the respirator you are using:

  • Respirator: Dust Mask - W141OS,
  • Respirator: PAPR Hood or Helmet - W139OS,
  • Respirator: PAPR Tight Fit Facepiece - W140OS, or
  • Respirator: Tight Fit Facepiece - W138OS.


Laboratory ramp down checklist

Laboratory ramp-up resources

Facility ramp-up checklist