Environmental Health and Safety

Odor Complaint Procedure

If unusual or nuisance odors are detected on campus, Reed employees should make a preliminary investigation of their surroundings to try and identify the source and call facilities at 503-777-7283 for routine odors such as “sewer”, “fishy”, “exhaust”, and “natural gas”.

Community Safety Officers should be called at 503-788-6666 for smoking related odors.

Environmental Health & Safety will respond to odor related emergency situations.

1) Be aware of your surroundings

Reed employees should note the odor’s frequency, intensity, duration, and offensiveness as well as when it first appeared.  Potential sources of the odor along with construction projects, unusual conditions, activities or materials in the area should also be noted.

2) Emergencies

In the event of an emergency, the Community Safety Office should be contacted immediately at 503-788-6666.  EHS will respond if contacted through the Community Safety Office if staff must leave the area or medical response is necessary. 

3) Smoke related odors - call Community Safety Office

Reed employees should contact the Community Safety Office at 503-788-666 for odors related to smoke or fire, cigarettes, other smoking materials, and emergencies.

4) Other routine odors - call Facilities

Reed employees should contact facilities at 503-777-7283 for other routine odors such as:

  • “Rotten egg” or “sewer” odors caused by dried out drain traps. Employees should run water through all nearby sinks for a few seconds each to re-fill the traps before contacting facilities if the odor persists.
  • “Fishy” odors caused by leaks in the steam system.
  • “Exhaust” or “diesel” odors caused by motor vehicles or construction equipment. These odors should only have a short duration.  Contact facilities if the odor persists.
  • “Natural gas” odors should IMMEDIATELY be reported to facilities to make necessary repairs.

Once contacted, facilities will create a work order with the pertinent information.  A building mechanic/HVAC technician will be paged along with a plumber if the odor is due to natural gas.