Oceanography The Official Magazine of
The Oceanography Society
Volume 22 Issue 04

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Volume 22, No. 4
Pages 242 - 243


THE OCEANOGRAPHY CLASSROOM • Health and Safety in the Learning Environment

By Simon Boxall  
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Before I start, let me state that I have great respect for health and safety—both at work and at home—and that maintaining a safe learning environment for students is paramount. This is particularly true for oceanography, where we work with some of the nastier chemicals and with high voltages, all in a boat on a stormy, deep, unstable sea. Let’s face it: if we were to initiate the subject of oceanography from scratch today, it would be banned. But, are we being overcautious to a point where a sense of true risk is no longer being instilled into our new generations of scientists? Is the purpose of health and safety moving from a pragmatic approach to the issue to a paper exercise that not only takes logic away but is more focused on litigation rather than avoiding mishaps?


Boxall, S. 2009. The oceanography classroom: Health and safety in the learning environment. Oceanography 22(4):242–243, https://doi.org/10.5670/oceanog.2009.116.


Cook, V.A., D. Phillips, and J. Holden. 2006. Geography fieldwork in a “risk society.” Area 38(4):431–420.

Slovic, P. 1987. Perception of risk. Science 236:280–285.

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