Safety is always the priority in labs with hazardous chemicals and materials present. If your lab falls under this category, learn how to keep your employees safe with our guide on maintaining the best lab safety practices.
Staff Education & Exercises
The first step in preventing accidents and mitigating harm is a thorough education curriculum on potential hazards, emergency procedures, and best safety lab practices all employees must adhere to. It’s up to the employer to ensure all personnel understands where dangers in the lab exist and the safety protocols for handling hazardous material and responding to dangerous accidents.
All employees should know how to use emergency tools like a fire extinguisher, eye wash station, safety showers, and first aid kit. They should be in obvious, accessible locations. A lab should also regularly conduct safety and emergency exercises like fire drills and chemical spill training.
Suitable Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
While working in a lab with hazardous chemicals, appropriate attire is always essential for personnel. Employers provide PPE to workers at no cost, and it’s up to the employer to ensure everyone wears PPE that fits and protects them from harm.
Typical PPE for workers in chemical labs includes:
- Lab coat
- Long pants
- Eye protection
- Proper foot attire (close-toed shoes)
With adequate PPE, lab employees should be protected from head to toe.
Proper Storage Practices
Many accidents and mishaps in a lab setting occur from the improper storage of hazardous chemicals or contaminants. These mistakes can happen due to inadequate storage containers or incorrect storage practices, from mislabeling to careless handling.
All employees should know proper storage protocols for hazardous materials and why they’re vital to ensure the safety of all workers. All dangerous materials should be stored in suitable containers with easy-to-read labels that everyone understands.
Regular Equipment Maintenance
Another area for potential accidents and dangers in a lab comes from malfunctioning or failing equipment. Faulty equipment is unpredictable, posing unforeseen hazards to all workers. Labs must stay on top of maintenance schedules, especially for safety equipment like fire extinguishers and eye wash stations.
At GenTech Scientific, we provide reliable used scientific equipment and ongoing services and repairs for lab equipment to ensure it functions correctly and safely. Contact our experts to safeguard from potentially dangerous equipment failures if it’s been a while since your lab’s last equipment checkup.