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Profile: Bob Wachter

Robert Wachter

Bob is an Injury Prevention Specialist for Environmental Health and Safety.

When did you join the university?
April 2007.

What's your day-to-day role in maintaining university safety?
I review the injury and illness reports daily (we average over 100 per month) and request further details as necessary. In addition, I look for direct and indirect injury/illness causation and assess the adequacy of supervisory prevention actions to make recommendations. When necessary, I perform on-site assessments to clarify regulatory requirements, UC Davis Policy & Procedure requirements, Standard Operating Procedure development, and assess further hazards,training requirements,equipment and tool needs and other related prevention actions.

How can employees, staff and faculty assist inmaintaininga safe work environmentfor themselves and others?
Manage your own personal risk;be proactive and prevent yourself from performing unsafe acts by modifying your behavior to control the risk. This can mean paying attention to surroundings, not rushing, getting the right tools and equipment, lifting properly, using ladders safely, and noting when you are frustrated or fatigued because this will put you at greater risk of injury. Get enough sleep, rest, nutrition, exercise and think how you can get injured before acting. Take the necessary, albeit sometimes more time-consuming prevention actions.

"I love the plethora and variety of challenges compared to my past experience with high speed industrial production environments."

What's an example of how you delight customers?
Often, I facilitate and obtainfunding topurchase and install equipment, eliminatingthe need to lift heavy objects. Other times, Imodify a work station to reduce employee pain/stress on the hands, neck, back and shoulder through proper ergonomic work positioning.

What do you like best about working at UC Davis?
I love the plethora and variety of challenges compared to my past experience with high speed industrial production environments.

What's the most challenging part of your job?
Unfortunately, there’s a lack ofsystematic departmental safety funding for basic safety tools, equipment, hazard assessments, employee training and injury prevention. I always tryto keep awareness highto compensate this.

Tell us one thing about yourself that most people wouldn't know.
I have 3 University degrees but I actually started out in Electrical Engineering, analytical instrumentation sales & service.I then obtained an MBA followed by a Masters in Civil/Environmental engineering while working at Monsanto in environmental research for both Monsanto and Federal EPA. Over time I branched into safety engineering & compliance during my 24 years tenure with Anheuser Busch corporate offices in St. Louis and the Fairfield Ca. brewery. I supplemented my education with 3 UC Davis and Berkeley Extension safety, health and workers compensation certificates coming full circle to now working at UC Davis.

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