All-Important Safety Rules

Safety must be your number one priority at all times.

Each student must strive for the highest safety standards. Cast and crew must work diligently to maintain a safe and healthy work environment. Pranks and other types of horseplay are unacceptable. Distracting crewmembers could result in accidents and injuries.

Safety takes precedence over expediency. This is especially true when a show is running behind schedule or is chasing the light. Never sacrifice safety considerations in the rush to get a shot.

The College follows guidelines developed by the Industry-Wide Labor-Management Safety Committee for use by the motion picture and television industry. The Industry-Wide Labor-Management Safety Committee is composed of guild, union, and management representatives active in industry safety and health programs. The safety bulletins they provide are guidelines recommended by the Safety Committee. They are not binding laws or regulations. State, federal, and/or local regulations, where applicable, override these guidelines. Modifications in these guidelines should be made, as circumstances warrant, to ensure the safety of the cast and crew.

Communication of safety information

Good communication of information is one of the most effective measures to ensure a safe set. This begins in pre-preproduction. Any production activities that require special attention from a safety perspective must be addressed at the show’s Director’s Prep. It is the Producer’s responsibility to make sure that the faculty has fully approved any such activities prior to the start of shooting.

Call sheets must contain important safety information for the next day’s shoot. Safety bulletins must be attached to call sheets for any production day where the crew needs to be alerted to specific safety concerns.

It is the Producer’s responsibility to make sure that safety meetings are conducted to brief all cast and crew members about potentially hazardous set conditions. Department heads are also responsible for conducting safety meetings for any safety issues specific to their department.

Personal safety

All crew must wear appropriate clothing and any required Personal Protective Equipment. A shirt and proper footwear should be worn at all times. Safety glasses or hearing protection must be worn when operating equipment or performing work where eye or ear damage could potentially occur.

Make sure you get the appropriate assistance when lifting or moving heavy or awkward objects. Avoid lifting such objects whenever possible by using carts, dollies, and other mechanical devices or get adequate help. Before lifting any load, check for slivers, jagged edges, burrs, rough or slippery surfaces, and protruding nails. Check your intended path for obstructions.

Medication which might interfere with your alertness or ability to perform your work should be used only under a doctor’s direction. If you feel that any medication is impairing your work, please discuss this with your supervisor. Do not work while under the influence of illegal drugs or alcoholic beverages. 

Keeping work areas safe

Good housekeeping should be maintained at all times. Walkways and work areas are to be kept clear of materials, trash, equipment and debris.

All cables should be neatly routed. Cables in walkways and traffic areas should be covered with mats and/or cable crossovers.

At a minimum, a four-foot perimeter should be kept clear around the interior of the stage walls. Make sure all exit doors are unobstructed, unlocked, and capable of being opened from the inside.

Always be aware of personnel working above and below you. All overhead equipment fixtures and props should be properly secured.

Safety on location

Working conditions may change from day to day, particularly on location. To prevent accidents, you need to be aware of your work environment and the equipment being used.

Be aware of general location safety concerns, including extreme temperature conditions, physical surroundings, indigenous critters, and nasty plants.

Familiarize yourself with emergency procedures for each location. You are responsible for knowing how to react in an emergency situation. Contact your supervisor if you do not know emergency procedures.

Fire and other hazards

Fire equipment (hydrants, extinguishers, sprinklers, hoses, etc.) must be accessible at all times.

All decorative set materials should be flame retardant or made of non-combustible materials if such materials will be exposed to hot lamps, fire effects, or other ignition sources.

Obey all “No Smoking” signs. Observe designated smoking areas and always extinguish cigarettes in the appropriate containers (butt cans).

If involved in any stunt, special effect, aviation sequence, water sequence or other potentially hazardous or unusual activities, attend any additional safety meetings held for that activity.

Reporting safety concerns and accidents

If you have any questions or concerns, or notice anything you believe could be hazardous and/or unsafe to the cast and crew, please talk to the Producer, Unit Production Manager, Shop Steward, or the school’s Head of Production. You will not be penalized in any way for bringing attention to safety concerns.

Report accidents immediately to your supervisor, the school’s Head of Production, and/or medical personnel. Follow instructions given to you when referred for medical treatment for any injury and retain documentation. All injuries must be reported to the school’s Head of Production on the date of occurrence.