Biological Safety

Aerosol Transmissible Diseases

The California Occupational Safety and Health Administration (Cal/OSHA) issued the Aerosol Transmissible Diseases Standard, Title 8 Section 5199, in August, 2008, to mitigate occupational exposures to pathogens transmitted via aerosols and droplets. The regulations specify that employers must implement an effective program to minimize exposure of employees to aerosol transmitted diseases (ATD).

Scope of the Regulations with Regard to Laboratory and Field Research

Principal investigators with research involving any of the agents listed in “Appendix D: Aerosol Transmissible Pathogens – Laboratory” of Title 8, Section 5199 must establish, implement and maintain a written biosafety and exposure control plan that meets the requirements of subsection (f) on Laboratories.

Additionally, § 5199.1 Aerosol Transmissible Diseases - Zoonotic explicitly covers operations involving the capture, sampling, or transportation of wildlife and operations involving samples, cultures, or other materials potentially containing zoonotic aerosol transmissible pathogens.

Principal investigators must complete a Biological Use Authorization (BUA) that describes the work procedures that minimize the production of aerosols, the use of personal protective equipment, cleaning and decontamination procedures, locations of emergency healthcare services, and the symptoms of infection for the main aerosol transmissible diseases or zoonoses associated with the project. The BUA will function as the written biosafety and exposure control plan and therefore principal investigators need to provide sufficient detail so that the BUA is a useful training document for all research personnel. Principal investigators are responsible for training staff and students on the precautions described in the BUA. The BUA as the exposure control plan must be reviewed, updated annually and as needed, and filed with the campus biosafety officer to document compliance with the standard.

For questions, contact the biosafety officer at 805.893.8894.

Cal/OSHA Aerosol Transmissible Diseases Standard
Cal OSHA Title 8, Section 5199, Appendix D: Aerosol Transmissible Pathogens – Laboratory
Cal/OSHA § 5199.1 Aerosol Transmissible Diseases - Zoonotic
ATD Addendum
Respiratory Protection Manual