Safety Guide for Experiments at CERN

If you are new to CERN and not familiar with its safety organisation, please read at least the text of THIS PAGE!

Emergency calls

In case of EMERGENCY call


En cas d'urgence appelez


Why you should read this page

At CERN you are going to work in an environment that presents a wide variety of dangers, many of them not immediately obvious. It is therefore of the utmost importance that you have at least some notions about how to work safely, both for your own sake and for the sake of your colleagues and, not to be forgotten, the equipment.

What is there to read?

This very first page gives you a general (and very insufficient!) idea about safety at CERN. You would, however, be well inspired to inform yourself more thoroughly, particularly by reading all of this guide as well as other safety documentation. You are also encouraged to contact people involved in safety, particularly your GLIMOS, (see below) for any information or advice that may be useful now or later. Or, simply, contact them in order to get to know them.

Who is responsible for safety at CERN?

Responsibility for safety at CERN falls on the shoulders of everybody. It is not the task of some safety authority, supervising the rest of us! However, expert help and advice in safety matters is provided by the Safety Commission. Basically, the organisation looks like this:



There is, of course, a lot more to the safety organisation than this. You will find a detailed description in this guide.

Some terms defined

An experiment collaboration consists of a number of teams (or groups), from different research institutes, each having its own hierarchical order.

In all matters concerning safety this order is overridden by the CERN safety organisation, in the first hand represented by the GLIMOS ( = Group Leader In Matters Of Safety). There is a GLIMOS nominated for every physics experiment at CERN.

The GLIMOS is the most important person for the safety of his experiment and has complete authority over personnel and equipment in all matters that concern safety of the experiment, independently of to what home institute the personnel or equipment belongs.

You can always turn to him for information and advice. If you have had an accident or, more generally, want to make a remark about anything that concerns safety, it is to your GLIMOS you should address yourself.

Your legal situation when working at an experiment at CERN

If you work in an experiment collaboration at CERN you will have signed a contract of some kind. This implies that you now work under the authority of the Director General of CERN and that you have to conform to the CERN rules of safety, independently of whatever rules are in force at your home institute.

You are expected to inform yourself about the safety rules at CERN. A good way to start is by reading this web!

Remember, you can search for topics.

What does all this mean for your practical, everyday work?

Safe working conditions are not something that is artificially added to the normal, everyday working situation. On the contrary, safety is and must be an integral part of any activity.

Always keep in mind that the only way to success for your experiment and your own work is through safe working methods.

Cutting corners where safety is concerned may be utterly counter-productive!

Experimentation might not always fit into industrial safety standards, but this fact never justifies carelessness.

Modified on August 4, 2005