Lab safety SC 2007

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University College Cork Health & Safety in the Lab UREKA SUMMER RESEARCH PROGRAMME


HAZARDS Biological Chemical Electrical Gases (eg LN2) Liquid nitrogen Glass Sharps Animal

Lab safety is a legal requirement!: 

Lab safety is a legal requirement! The laboratory environment is a hazardous place to work. You will be confronted with a wide array of chemicals, biologics, and instrumentation. Nearly every common laboratory technique, practice, or procedure carries some risk of exposure or mechanical injury. Appreciating what these risks are and how to work safely with them is the focus of this presentation.


Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) PPE is provided to protect employees from possible injury. They should be worn at all times when in the lab. Labcoats will be provided by your lab Supervisor and you will be advised where the dirty coats go to be laundered. Nitrile/powderfree/latex gloves are readily available in all sizes. Safety glasses are also available and will be necessary to perform certain tasks. In the Lab…

In the Lab….cont’d: 

In the Lab….cont’d Please read the SOPs regarding safety in your lab Eating and drinking in the lab is strictly prohibited Confine long hair and loose jewelry or clothes Open-toed footwear is not recommended No mouth pipetting Cover any cuts/scrapes Wash your hands with soap and water after performing any laboratory activities Change gloves as required to prevent contamination Do not wear gloves when opening doors etc Clean up all surfaces after you, especially in the laminar flow-hoods Observe good housekeeping practices at all times

In the Lab….cont’d: 

In the Lab….cont’d On receipt of chemicals, please ensure the MSDS is given to Lab Supervisor for entry to the MSDS library Always read the safety labels on chemicals before opening them – if unsure, ask for advice When dealing with LN2, it is essential to wear padded gloves and safety glasses Chemicals


Toxic chemical Flammable Combustible Eyewash station Explosive material Corrosive Common Lab Safety Signs

Equipment…….. : 

Equipment…….. Do not use equipment if you have not received formal training on it If there is a booking system, please use it Ensure equipment is left in the good condition you found it in Please advise supervisor if equipment needs to be serviced or seems to be defective in any way Ensure all electrical cables are safe, and advise someone in charge if open wiring is observed.

Waste Materials…...: 

Waste Materials…... All normal waste is disposed of in bins lined with black bags (also labelled) All cardboard boxes are broken down and placed in designated area Used paper is placed in blue recyclable bins, also appropriately labeled. All biological materials must be autoclaved and disposed of properly

Waste Materials: 

Waste Materials Ensure all broken glass is placed in the dedicated labelled container All sharps/needles must be disposed of in plastic sharps containers Any toxic chemicals e.g. Ethidium bromide (from PCR gels) should be disposed of carefully – ask your lab supervisor There is usually a lab rota system set up within the lab to share autoclaving/waste disposal duties; you will be shown this system by your supervisor

Accident/Emergency (Fire etc..): 

Accident/Emergency (Fire etc..) Report all accidents (injury, spill, breakage, glass, sharps ...) to the laboratory supervisor. On entering lab, note the locations of the eyewash stations, and the drench shower. Please ask who the first-aiders are in your lab. Note location of first-aid kits Note also the position of the Fire extinguishers, fire blankets and emergency power switches in your laboratory

Accident & Emergency - Fire: 

Accident & Emergency - Fire In case of a fire alarm: Switch off gas (if working with it) Evacuate building immediately by the nearest fire exit and assemble in assembly area. WALK…do NOT use lift You MUST take note of where the emergency exits are located in your building Please advise Fire Marshall if your neighbour is not accounted for outside, and you feel they may still be in the building. Do not re-enter building until instructed to do so by UCC security staff. If in the café, leave hot drinks behind

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