Safety at Illinois

Research and Workplace Safety

Campus environmental health and safety programs are designed to protect members of the campus community. The Division of Research Safety (DRS) and the Division of Safety and Compliance provide oversight of comprehensive safety programs for faculty, staff, and students at the University of Illinois.



Report All Incidents to DRS

Contact DRS immediately to report an injury, exposure, spill, fire, near miss, or any other incident at 217-333-2755 or DRS will reply during business hours. If this is an emergency during business hours or after-hours, call 911.

DRS investigates incidents and near misses to help determine root causes and offers suggestions to prevent them from reoccurring in the future. For more information about incident investigations, click here.

Life-Threatening Injury or Situation

Call 911 for an immediate response!

DRS personnel are available during business hours and after-hours to consult with emergency responders. 

Non-Life Threatening Injury or Exposure

If you are exposed to a hazardous material, inform your principal investigator (PI) or laboratory manager and seek medical attention immediately.

Fires and Spills

Call 911 in the case of a fire or complicated spill. See the response procedure on the DRS site.





Lab Safety

A safe work environment must be provided for all researchers at UIUC. When working with or around hazards that are a risk to health and safety, PIs are required to create safety plans detailing the hazards and risk mitigation strategies used in all research locations. DRS provides tools and resources to help develop comprehensive safety plans. Some of the areas DRS can assist with include:

  • Safety management
  • Laboratory, biological, chemical, laser, radiological, electrical, and field safety
  • Hazardous material transportation; and hazard communication

Visit the DRS website to learn more.


SHIELD team members process saliva samples

Workplace Safety

Two campus units are responsible for workplace safety: The F&S Safety & Compliance program provides training and guidance on workplace safety including chemical exposure, ergonomics hearing conservation, and respiratory protection

The OVCRI's Occupational Health and Safety program organizes mandatory training programs to comply with the Public Health Service Policy on Humane Care and Use of Laboratory Animals. All people with direct or indirect exposure to research and teaching animals must be enrolled in the OHS Program.


Male construction worker helping to build the University of Illinois Solar Farm.

Personal Safety

For general information about campus safety, visit the University Police website. Many research labs operate around the clock, so some members of the Illinois research community may need to travel on campus at night. Some things to remember:

  • Avoid traveling alone, and use well-lit areas. SafeWalks and SafeRides are available.
  • Don’t hesitate to contact University Police (217-333-1216) to report suspicious activity.
  • Call 911 (or 9-911 from a campus phone) if you find yourself in an emergency situation.

Fieldwork presents a different set of safety concerns. If you are working in the field, stay alert and be aware of your surroundings. Share your expected location and route of travel with others before you go.


University of Illinois police officer talking with Student Patrol member alongside squad vehicle with lights activated at night.


Questions? We're Here to Help!

Division of Research Safety
102 Environmental Health and Safety Building
101 South Gregory Street, MC-225