Chemical Hygiene Plan that will ensure thesafe storage of materials, or installing a sprin-kler system.
—the process of developing plansfor managing an emergency and taking action toensure that the laboratory is ready to handle anemergency, such as ensuring that adequatesupplies are available, providing appropriatetraining for laboratory personnel, and preparinga communications plan.
—efforts to manage the emergencyas it occurs, instituting a chain of command,possibly including outside responders as wellas laboratory staff.
—actions taken to restore the laboratoryand affected areas to a point where the functionsof the laboratory may be carried out safely.The four phases are interconnected: effectivemitigation efforts reduce the impact of the emer-gency and ease the response and recovery stages;good planning in the preparedness stage makes theresponse and recovery less complicated; and lessonslearned during an emergency may lead to furthermitigation and preparedness efforts during therecovery phase.
rstdiscussion of laboratory security. A laboratorysecurity system helps to mitigate a number of risksincluding the theft of chemicals which could be sold,or used to manufacture weapons or illicit substances;threats from activist groups; or the accidental releaseof or exposure to hazardous materials. Furthermore,a good laboratory security system can increaseoverall safety for laboratory personnel and the public,improve emergency preparedness by assisting withpreplanning, and ultimately lower the organization’sliability and insurance premiums. The updatedguidelines offer several security plans and advicefor training laboratory members to ensure that allpersonnel understand the security measures in placeand how to use them.
The Importance of Green Chemistry
Green chemistry is the philosophy of designingexperiments, products, and processes to reduce orto eliminate the use and generation of hazardoussubstances, and to minimize accidents, injuries, andexposures to personnel. Principles of green chem-istry are considered for the
rst time in the newedition of
as guidelines for thesafe management of laboratory chemicals.Though not always directly applicable to labora-tory safety, some of the principles of green chemistryencourage practices that can result in a safer labora-tory environment. For example, one principle iswaste prevention—planning experiments carefully toselect procedures that minimize the quantities of hazardous chemicals used and the amount of hazardous chemicals that must be discarded at theend of the experiment. Green chemistry principlesare consistent with ordering chemicals in smallcontainers, even though it may be less expensive tobuy in bulk quantities. Small containers are easier tohandle than larger ones, reducing the risk of acci-dents and the exposure of laboratory personnel tohazardous materials. Because smaller containers takeup less storage space it is easier to store them prop-erly, for example in a well-ventilated areaor in a locked cabinet. Furthermore, smallquantities of chemicals are more likely tobe used up quickly, reducing the likelihoodof decomposition of reactive compoundsover time and the subsequent costlydisposal of the chemical.
Storage According to Compatibility
The storage requirements for stock-rooms and laboratories vary widelydepending on factors such as the level of expertise of the employees and the level of security of the facility. Furthermore, manylocal, state and federal regulations havespeci
c requirements that affect the
Box 1. The Culture of Safety
A key focus of
is the importance of establishingand nurturing a “culture of safety”—an environment in whichsafe laboratory practice is standard. Since the last edition of theguidelines, signi
cant progress toward this goal has been made.Safety and training programs, often coordinated through anof
ce of environmental health and safety, have been implementedto monitor the handling of chemicals from the time they areordered until their disposal, and to train laboratory personnel insafe work practices. The careful consideration of habitual risk assessment, experiment planning, and preparing for worst-casescenarios is now as much a part of scienti
c education as learningthe theoretical background of experiments or the step-by-stepprotocols for performing them in a professional manner.