Health and Safety - Laboratory Safety
The Occupational Health and Safety Act states that the University, as an employer, is responsible for ensuring compliance with the Act and for taking every reasonable precaution to protect workers. The Laboratory Health and Safety Manual provides a minimum set of health and safety standards for the operation of campus laboratories.
Health and Safety Training Requirements
Prior to working in a laboratory, all users of the physical geography laboratories must complete:
- Employee Health and Safety Orientation
- Laboratory and Environmental/Waste Management Workshop
Depending on the workers role and/or type of work within the laboratory users may also need to complete:
- Nuclear Radiation Safety
- Faculty/Supervisors Responsibilities Seminar
All laboratory workers must complete a Safety Checklist with the laboratory supervisor prior to working in the laboratory.
All visitors to the physical geography laboratories must dress appropriately, wear required personal protective equipment, be accompanied by a representative and follow the rules and procedures of the laboratory.
General Principles for Laboratory Safety
Good laboratory practice requires that every laboratory worker and supervisor observe the following:
- Do not consume food and beverages in the lab
- Use equipment for its designed purpose
- Ensure that the laboratory supervisor is informed of any unsafe condition
- Know the location and use of safety equipment
- Determine potential hazards and precautions before beginning new procedures
- Avoid distracting others
- Ensure visitors are equipped appropriately
- Store and label all hazardous agents according to WHMIS requirements
- Consult the material safety data sheet prior to using an unfamiliar chemical and follow the proper procedures when handling or manipulating all hazardous agents.
- Follow proper waste disposal procedures as outlined in the Hazardous Materials Management Handbook.
Health and Hygiene
Good laboratory practice requires all laboratory personnel to:
- Wear appropriate eye protection, as outlined in the Eye Protection Policy.
- Use other protective equipment as required. This may include, but is not limited to, safety glasses, closed-toe shoes, lab coat, proper gloves.
- Confine long hair and loose clothing.
- Use a proper pipetting device (no pipetting by mouth).
- Avoid exposure to gases, vapours, aerosols, and particulates by using a properly functioning laboratory fumehood.
- Wash hands upon completion of laboratory procedures and remove all protective equipment, including gloves and lab coats.
- Consume food and beverages only in properly designated areas and not in the laboratory.