LABORATORY SAFETY

Nancy Delcellier Environmental Health and Safety Officer Faculty of Medicine
nancy.delcellier@uottawa.ca

http://www.medicine.uottawa.ca/ehss-spe/eng/

Course Outline
• • • • • • Responsibilities Pre-Planning Assessing Hazards and Risks Working with Hazardous Materials Laboratory Equipment Emergency Procedures

Why Lab Safety?
• Legal Reasons • Moral Reasons

Choices
The person best prepared to choose will know the likely outcome.

Ask Questions/Read procedures
• Why???

Workplace Statistics
• National Workers’ Compensation statistics, from 2003:
– Almost 349,000 lost-time injuries – 963 fatalities in 2003

• In Ontario
– 378 workers killed in 2003 – Approx. 7 workers killed per week

Research employee injuries, 1993 - 1997*

The most common serious injuries: cuts due to careless use of razor blades.

. Source: Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Office of Laboratory Safety.
All reported injuries are shown, without regard to severity

University of Ottawa (2002) • 56 injuries reported to WSIB
– 29 injuries required medical attention – 27 injuries required first aid only, but still resulted in lost time

• 109.5 days of lost time • Total of 94 accidents and incidents reported to HR

The University Safety Policies
OCCUPATIONAL HEALTH AND SAFETY POLICY
Policy 77 The University of Ottawa recognizes its legal and moral responsibilities in health and safety for the University community by ensuring sound and safe conditions in all its activities.

ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT Policy 91
The purpose of this Policy is to ensure that the University fulfils its legal obligations for the protection of the environment, through the appropriate assignment of responsibilities throughout the University, and establishment of directives, procedures and standards. http://www.uottawa.ca/sec-univ/pol.htm

Responsibility and Accountability
Rector

Senior Managers Deans and Chairs

Supervisors Principal Investigators

Laboratory Workers Support Staff, Graduate Students, Undergraduate Students

Occupational Health & Safety Committees
• Performs safety inspections • Reviews accident & incident reports and

follows up on any corrective actions as needed • Works with supervisors and employees to promote safety & health issues • Reviews safety program

Pre-Planning Experiments

• Identify ALL hazards
• Ensure all safety equipment available, and maintained • Follow preplanned work procedures • No substitution without thorough review (Supervisor) • Develop an Attitude of Safety Awareness

Before any work, you must know
• Properties of materials & agents and their prescribed safety procedures • Be familiar with operating procedures for ALL equipment used • Emergency spill procedures, use of adsorbents and disinfectants • Designated escape routes (know alternate) • Location of fire extinguisher, eye wash, shower, first aid, and spill kits

Assessing Hazards and Risks
• Risk due to hazardous materials • Physical Hazards – electrical – mechanical – temperature – electromagnetic fields • Biohazards • Hazards from Radioactivity

Risks due to Hazardous Materials

• • • • • •

Compressed Gases Flammable and Combustible Oxidizers Toxic Corrosive Reactive

General Rules for Handling Hazardous Materials

• All Containers, pipes, process vessels and storage areas must be labeled • All labels must identify the product and hazards associated with its use • Read the label at least three times before using the products
– when removing from storage – before opening the container – before actual usage

General Rules for Handling Hazardous Materials

• Date containers when opening for the first time. • Maintain up to date inventory • Regularly dispose of surplus materials • Keep on hand only those chemicals that you have room to store properly • Stick to the procedures • Keep your workplace neat and organized • Develop an attitude of safety awareness

Rules for Handling Compressed Gases
• Gas cylinders must be properly secured • When no longer in use or during transport - shut valves, relieve gas in regulator, remove regulator and cap • Gas cylinders must be labeled like all other containers

Rules for Handling Compressed Gases
• Corroded lecture bottles or cylinders should not be stored or used • Check hoses, tubing and regulators daily • Empty cylinders should be returned to central storage as soon as possible • Empty gas cylinders are marked “EMPTY”

Compression!

Cylinders

Flammable Materials
LEDROIT December 22, 1997

Rules for Handling Flammable Materials

Storage of flammables
• Use approved flammable storage cabinets • Maximum 20 Litres per storage container • Maximum 4 Litres per storage container for class 1A liquids • Do not store flammables with oxidizers • Store flammable liquids only in approved refrigerators. • Ensure all containers labelled, including waste containers

Testing flammable cabinets

Testing flammable cabinets

Testing flammable cabinets

And if not stored properly…..

Rules for Handling Flammable Materials
Precautionary Measures
• Use flammable and combustible liquids in a fume hood • Ensure that all sparking equipment, e.g., switches, relays, thermostat, variacs are removed from the fume hood • Ensure pressure release valve open when heating flasks of flammable liquid • Do not heat flammable liquids with paint stripper guns • Add boiling chips to boiling liquids to prevent bumping • Minimize volumes to be heated where possible

Vapors travel!

Rules for Handling Corrosive Materials
Storage
• Store in corrosive storage cabinets • Store corrosives on lower shelves • Do not store acids and bases together • Do not store concentrated acids or bases under sinks • Hydrofluoric acid must be stored in plastic containers • Ensure all containers labelled

Rules for Handling Corrosive Materials
Precautionary Measures
• Use proper eye, hand and body protection • Prevent exposure to corrosive fumes and vapours • Always add acid to water, never reverse • Pour Chemicals properly

Rules for Handling Toxic Materials
• Minimize exposures with engineering controls and administrative techniques • Install and maintain automatic monitors and alarms • Use proper eye, face, hand and body protection • Be aware of emergency procedures • Practice good personal hygiene • Inform your supervisor of medications you are taking if working in a hazardous area • Decontaminate your work space daily

Reproductive hazards
• Toxic effects on both female and male reproduction • Advise supervisor or H&S professional if pregnant (many effects during 1st trimester) • Resources: – http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/99-104.html – http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/malrepro.html – http://www.uottawa.ca/services/ehss/labsaf ety.htm

Rules for Handling Reactive Materials
• • • • • Buy only as much as you need Label and date as soon as received + Date when first opened Do not open a bottle past it’s expiration date Do not open a peroxide former if crystals or precipitates are present • Store peroxide forming materials away from heat and light
• Examples of materials which form peroxides after prolonged exposure to air or light: ethers, THF, cyclohexene, p-dioxane, cyclooctene

Reactive Materials
• Monitor containers for signs of instability, e.g., changes in colour, crystal formation, drying out

• Store perchloric acid bottles in glass or ceramic trays • Store water reactives away from sources of water
• • • • Do not handle bottles of reactive chemicals with crystal formation around the cap Contact EHSS for disposal of reactive chemical wastes Plan experiments carefully Ensure proper safety equipment available

+

Incompatible Chemicals
• Mixing can result in hazardous reactions, fires, production of toxic fumes • Level of incompatibility may depend on quantity used, temperature, pressure • Store incompatible chemicals separately • Organize experiments, reactions, to avoid mixing, unless under controlled conditions • Review literature and MSDS prior to experiment • Do not dispose of incompatible wastes in the same container

Incompatible Chemicals

Cryogenic Fluids
• Cryogenic liquids are materials with boiling points of less than -73°C (-100°F), e.g., liquid nitrogen, helium and argon, and slush mixtures of dry ice with isopropanol • Very small amounts of liquids produce large volumes of gas • Rapid evaporation can lower available oxygen in the immediate area, creating an oxygen deficient atmosphere, e.g., elevators • Cryogenic liquids cause cold burns and frostbite • Solid oxygen crystals can form in liquid nitrogen traps attached to vacuum lines

Cryogenic Liquids - Precautions
• Wear insulated gloves when handling cryogenic liquids • Wear safety glasses / face shields when handling and transferring cryogenic liquids • Fill containers to indicated maximum level • Perform operations (pouring) slowly

Electrical Hazards
No in-house modifications

Electrical Hazards: Symbols

Mechanical Hazards
• Mechanical hazards such as this open drive belt must be guarded • No loose clothing • Tripping and slipping

Vacuum Lines
• Wear safety glasses when using vacuum systems • Inspect glass for cracks • Wrap glass (flasks) under vacuum with tape or vacuum hose • Wrap dewar flasks with tape • Use traps between vacuum sources and vessels under reduced pressure • Install automatic shut-off for mercury diffusion pumps

Vacuum Pumps
• Vacuum pumps should be placed on a tray to catch oil that inevitably leaks from these units. • Vacuum equipment should be trapped or filtered as appropriate.

High Pressure Systems
• Wear safety glasses and protective gloves when using high pressure apparatus • Check systems for leaks and possible defects • Place protective shield between you and the apparatus • Use fume hoods designed with explosion proof sashes where possible • Do not work alone using high pressure apparatus • Do not leave high pressure reactions unattended for extended periods • Be aware of emergency procedures

Centrifuges
•All centrifuges must have interlocking devices to prevent opening during operation •Clean up spills immediately •Ensure load is balanced Log all usage

Accident at Carleton University, 1999
Minor injuries only

Centrifuge Accident at Cornell University, 1998

Safe Use of Autoclaves
• • • • • • Learn how to use! Identify (who and what) Proper autoclave bags Proper loading (trays) Removing waste Not everything is autoclavable:
• Phenol, javex, corrosives, flammables, melting plastics

• http://www.uottawa.ca/service s/ehss/autoclaves.htm

Glassware
• Inspect glassware for cracks, stars, or stress lines before use • Repair or discard defective glassware • Wear eye protection when working with glass apparatus • Wear safety gloves when inserting glass into rubber or plastic tubing • Do not wash broken glassware with other glassware • Do not mix glassware or broken glass with regular garbage. Dispose in cardboard boxes or designated containers for recycling

Control Measures
• • • • • • • • Eye protection Gloves Lab coats Footwear Fume hoods Emergency showers Eyewashes Fire extinguishers

Working Alone / After Hours • • • • Never work alone in high risk area Use buddy system Phone Protection Services Have friend contact lab at regular intervals

Eye Protection • Use appropriate safety glasses • “Avoid use of contact lenses”? • Goggles for liquids • Safety glasses for explosion risks

• Wear at all times in labs

Gloves
• Minimizes contact with hazardous agent • Use appropriate gloves • PVC, latex, rubber, nitrile, polypropylene • Check resistance chart • Do not wear gloves in halls or elevators
http://www.science.uottawa.ca/HS/glove_main.htm

Lab Coats
• • • • • Protects clothing Protects body Should have snaps Non-flammable fabric Do not wash with regular clothing

Footwear
• Closed-toed shoes must be worn in labs • Sandals are never to be worn in labs • Shoes must cover the foot • Steel toed boots must be worn in mechanical areas

Fume Hoods
• • • • • • • Chemical hoods Biosafety hoods Radioisotope hoods Exhaust canopies Recirculating hoods Perchloric acid hoods Hydrofluoric acid hoods

Fume Hood Design
• • • • • • • • Sash Bypass Grills Face Velocity Baffle Exhaust duct Face opening HEPA filter Carbon filter

Fume Hood Safety
• Never put your head into a fume hood • Minimize storage of chemicals or equipment in a fume hood • Work with sash at indicated operating level • Set up apparatus or sources of emission at least six inches behind the plane of fume hood • Raise large pieces of equipment at least one inch above the floor of the fume hood • Do not obstruct back slots • Keep sash closed when not working in fume hood • Avoid cross drafts when working in a fume hood

Emergency Showers/ Eyewashes

Emergency Showers/ Eyewashes
• Know location of emergency showers and eyewash stations • Become familiar with operation • Wash for minimum of 15 minutes with running water • Remove all contaminated clothing • Wait for medical assistance • Report incident

Fire Extinguishers
• Attend faculty training • Extinguish fire only if feel comfortable • ABC for regular fires • D for metal induced fires • Pull fire alarm

Emergency Procedures
• • • • • • Fires Explosions Spills Emissions First aid Injuries • Accidents • Incident/accident report form • Property damage • 5411

Emergency Procedures
• Contact Protection Services for emergencies at extension 5411 • If safe to clean spill by yourself, proceed • After incident or accident, complete incident/ accident form • Investigation by EHSS, Human Resources and Occupational Health and Safety Committee

Waste Disposal
• • • • • • Regulated by Ontario University procedures Faculty guidelines Sewer restrictions Air restrictions Chemical waste • • • • • • • Biomedical waste Sharps waste Battery waste Oil waste Scintillation wastes Photographic waste Regular garbage

Waste Disposal
• Label all wastes • University Hazardous Waste label • Sharps containers • Solvent waste containers • Broken glass in boxes • Batteries recycling

Waste Disposal - General Guidelines
• Use approved containers for disposal, (see EHSO) • Label all hazardous waste containers with University hazardous waste label • Do not mix incompatible wastes • Do not overfill waste containers • Contact EHSS for disposal of unstable reactive chemicals, e.g., dry picric acid • Contact faculty representatives for disposal

Before Leaving the Lab
• Check Overnight operations
 Supplies are sufficient  Waterlines are adequately clamped  Description of the process posted  Emergency contacts posted

Overnight incident
• Thermometer melted from heat • Mercury vaporized • Rubber supports melted • Fire burnt itself out

Before Leaving the Lab
• Turn off
    Gas Water Power lines Other non necessary equipment

• Clean your work area
• Return ALL chemicals to storage • Lower fume hood sash • Wash your hands

Weekly Lab Checks
• • • • • Purge Eyewash station Fire extinguisher First Aid Kit Fume Hood Tubing, pressurized connection • Chemical storage • Cap Sinks, floor drains

Page 5 - Laboratory Procedures and Safety Manual

Printed Resources
• Faculty Laboratory Procedures and Safety Manual • WHMIS Manual • University Hazardous Materials Handling Guide • CRC Handbook of Laboratory Safety • Prudent Practices in the Laboratory • The Chemical Institute of Canada Lab Safety Handbook

Find the potentials…

What’s Wrong? #1

Find the potentials…

What’s Wrong? #2

Find the potentials…
What’s Wrong? #3

Find the potentials…
What’s Wrong? #4

Find the potentials…
What’s Wrong? #5

Accident waiting to happen!
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