Big 12 Most Common Laboratory Safety Problems

beaker filled with fluid

  • Eyewashes should be flushed weekly and documented on eyewash tags.
  • Label chemical waste with specific contents. Keep waste tag attached to the container at all times.
  • Maintain labels on chemical containers received from manufacturers and label secondary containers. Replace old and deteriorated labels.
  • Segregate chemicals properly using the EHS lab safety manual. Store acids in an acid cabinet or in a plastic container (tub). Store nitric acid separately.
  • Dispose of unwanted chemicals through the EHS waste disposal program.
  • Keep chemical waste containers closed (do not forget to remove the funnel).
  • Chemical fume hood sashes should be kept closed whenever possible. Maintain the minimum possible opening when working. Limit storage in hoods to essential items only.
  • Do not store or consume food or drinks in labs where hazardous materials are present.
  • Secure gas cylinders properly and keep safety caps on cylinders when not in use.
  • Do not wear shorts or open-toed shoes (e.g. sandals) in labs. Wear appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) when working in labs where hazardous materials are present.
  • Have appropriate spill supplies available and follow response procedures.
  • Remove clutter and practice good housekeeping. Keep exits and aisles clear. Eliminate extension cords and power strips in series.
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