About half a million people in the United States work in laboratory environments. Laboratories often mix and handle materials that are hazardous to health and property.
Laboratory workers have to also keep clean, sterile environments. We’ve got you covered if you’re looking for a laboratory safety checklist to reference.
Here are some laboratory safety tips you can apply.
Maintain Your Emergency Stations
The emergency stations are the most important areas of your laboratory. They help you prevent fires and poisoning and protect the health and safety of your lab workers.
Make sure that your emergency stations are well-stocked with:
- Rinsing stations that are pressurized and responsive
- Properly labeled fire extinguishers for any chemicals that you use
- Gas masks and emergency eyewear, gloves, and aprons
- First aid kids with medical-grade ointment and alcohol
- Emergency medication and concoctions to reverse poisoning
Allow easy access to your emergency stations. Make sure that they’re labeled with instructions and emergency contact information.
Take Care of Your Laboratory Equipment
You have to also keep your laboratory stocked with all of the best equipment while making sure to also take care of it. This includes:
- Flame sources that are leak-free, with nozzles that allow full control
- Burner eyes that are responsive and evenly distributed
- Knives that are fresh and sharpened
- Plenty of laboratory gloves and disposable safety equipment
- Light sources that are energy-efficient and long-lasting
Companies like Chrom Tech sell products that can help you safely store liquids. Use laboratory equipment that is Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and science-approved. It’s easier to handle your materials without error or accident when you have the best equipment.
Keeping your equipment in the best condition possible can reduce accidents in your lab, and will help you work more effectively.
Learn Safety Care and Protocols
Set strict health and safety standards in your laboratory and make sure that the rules are enforced. This includes a maximum number of people in the laboratory and at each station.
Keep the lab clean and organized at all times. Make sure that everyone is responsible for putting their garments and equipment back in the correct location. Being stringent about policies will create a safe culture for your laboratory. Put policies in writing for everyone to reference.
Focus on Your Laboratory Personnel
Always provide training and continued education opportunities to your laboratory staff. Well-trained personnel will be less mistake-prone. They’ll also respond better to emergency situations.
Communicate openly with management to make sure that standards are upheld. Regularly hold emergency drills and get confirmation that you and your staff are on the same page.
Improve Your Laboratory Safety
Laboratory safety is of the utmost importance no matter what kind of facility you run. You’ll love the productivity and efficiency that you’ll receive by making your lab a safe environment.
Use the tips presented as a starting point no matter what kind of lab you run.
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