Field safety

Field activities are defined as work, research and/or learning activities undertaken by faculty, staff or students under the auspices of SFU and beyond the geographical boundaries of University property.

Field activity planning

Supervisors are required to adequately plan their field activities and assess and mitigate the risks. This will include, for example, ensuring team members have appropriate training, have adequate personal protective equipment, and know how to secure emergency assistance.

Get started by referring to the visual step by step process flow diagram at right (click to view higher resolution version).

As needed, consult detailed guidance below and find templates and resources to facilitate planning and risk assessment. Contact EHS for assistance.

Field activity plan review and approval

Follow the review and approval process in place in your department/unit. For domestic activities that are categorized as high or extreme risk, approval by the unit head (Chair, Director or Dean) will be done in consultation with the Field Safety Advisory Committee.

Field Safety Advisory Committee

The Field Safety Advisory Committee (FSAC) is charged with implementing, overseeing and enforcing the University’s domestic field safety program. The FSAC does not oversee or advise on international field activities. While all domestic off-campus activities conducted under the auspices of SFU are potentially in scope, the primary mandate of the FSAC is to review field activity plans that meet the criteria for high or extreme risk according to the Risk matrix for off-campus activities within Canada.

For more information, refer to the Field Safety Advisory Committee Terms of reference.

International field activities

For any field activity outside Canada, follow guidance and requirements at Travel safety - Risk & emergency planning - Simon Fraser University ( A Field activity plan should also be developed and subjected to the review and approval process in place in the unit of origin. Please note: the Field Safety Advisory Committee does not oversee or advise on international field activities so the FAP would not require additional review by the FSAC.

     Vehicle and Vessel Use

     For any activities involving vehicles and vessels consult and follow the vehicle and vessel guidelines.