The University of Kentucky is committed to providing work, study, research, and residential environments that are free from recognized hazards.  Therefore, a rigorous program of industrial hygiene monitoring is in place to ensure the well-being of all persons at UK.

Monitoring is performed for a variety of substances.  Hazards in the workplace encompass numerous environmental and physical stressors, which can include both chemical and physical hazards.  Chemical hazards constitute a large percentage of occupational health hazards, whether in the form of vapor, gas, or mist which can be breathed into the lungs, or as solvents, which can cause skin irritation or be absorbed through the skin.  Physical hazards include excessive levels of noise, nonionizing and ionizing radiation, vibration, and extremes of temperature and pressure.

The University of Kentucky Health & Safety (UKHS) Division performs frequent on-campus monitoring that takes a variety of forms.  Reasons for performing monitoring include both of the following:

  • Ensuring that engineering and administrative controls are adequate to protect personnel from exposures, and determining appropriate levels of personal protective equipment;
  • Ensuring compliance with exposure limits established by regulatory agencies (e.g. OSHA, EPA), and agencies who publish best-practice recommendations (e.g. NIOSH, ACGIH).

Personal Monitoring

Personal monitoring refers to monitoring devices which are worn by the affected faculty/staff/student, with the sampling device as close to the “breathing zone” (for inhaled chemical hazards) or the ears (for noise) as possible.  Below are examples of on-campus personal monitoring for inhalational hazards using sampling pumps and media.

  • Lead

  • Dimethylacetamide

  • Formaldehyde

  • Metal Fumes

Personal monitoring can also be done with direct-reading instruments designed to be worn during the normal course of the day. Examples:

  • Carbon Monoxide / Nitrogen Dioxide

  • Noise

Area Monitoring

Area Monitoring uses monitoring devices (either direct or indirect-reading) placed in specific environments but not worn by personnel. Some examples are depicted below.

  • Asbestos

  • Mercury

  • Heat Stress

  • Power Density

Other Types of Monitoring

  • Monitoring

  • Tape

  • Swabs

  • Bulk Air Samples

    "Grab" bulk air samples for analysis of specfic contaminants

Further Information

For more information on lead, asbestos, noise, or radon, refer to the specific UKHS pages hyperlinked herein.  (Insert hyperlinks for lead and asbestos after pages developed).

For questions about monitoring for biological materials, infectious agents, autoclave testing, etc., contact the UK Department of Biological Safety.

For questions about radionuclide monitoring, dosimetry, or ionizing radiation sources other than radon, contact the UK Radiation Safety Division.

OHS can perform monitoring for any potential hazard that has a testing method approved by a recognized organization such as NIOSH, ASTM, OSHA, etc.  If you have any questions about industrial hygiene monitoring, or to request monitoring, please contact Robert Thomas.


Occupational Health And Safety

Occupational Health & Safety

252 East Maxwell Street
Lexington, KY 40506-0314

Phone: (859) 257-2924
Fax: (859) 257-8787

Accident Reporting

Work Related Employee Injuries

Student or Visitor Injuries
Injury and Illness Reporting

Report unsafe conditions to EHS
(859) 257-2924 or send us an e-mail.

After hours and weekends
UKPD (859) 257-1616 Emergencies 911!