Chemical Containment Levels for Animal Administration

In order to provide researchers, animal facility staff, other animals, and the environment with the appropriate safeguards, the Boston University Animal Science Center  (BUASC),  and Environmental Health and Safety (EHS) have established four levels of containment practices based on the administration of potentially hazardous chemicals in animals.  These containment levels (CCL) outline controls above and beyond the procedures, equipment, and PPE used by BUASC for basic animal biosafety level 1 or 2 work. Each chemical containment level is designed to enhance not replace the already established ABSL -1 and 2 practices.

The document “Containment Levels for Chemical Administration in Animals” (add link to document here) outlines the process for establishing the appropriate Chemical Containment Level and provides examples of the potentially hazardous chemicals associated with each level.

The CCL’s have been designated CCL1-4 ascending from the least hazardous to the most hazardous.  The following outlines the definition and general practices for each level.

Chemical Containment Level 1 (CCL-1)

CCL-1 is the lowest containment level.  CCL-1 is designated for projects with little-to-no potential risk to workers or the environment and there are no additional controls beyond what is required to work at the approved Animal Biosafety Level.

Chemical Containment 2 (CCL-2)

CCL- 2 is designated for projects involving chemicals with a minor risk to the researchers or LASC/LACF staff when directly handling animals that have been exposed to a potentially hazardous chemical.  Beyond the requirements for the approved Animal Biosafety Level, CCL-2 requirements include:

  • Double gloves are required for handling animals
  • Secondary containment must be used for transportation of animals
  • Use of microisolator or ventilated cages and low dust bedding
  • MSDS sheets must be available in the Chemical binder of the housing rooms
  • Light Blue cage card and door sign

Chemical Containment 3 (CCL-3)

CCL-3 is designated for projects involving chemicals with a higher risk to the researchers or LASC/LACF staff  when directly handling animals that have been exposed to a potentially hazardous chemical. . Beyond the requirements for the approved Animal Biosafety Level, CCL-3 requirements include:

  • Double gloves and use of Biosafety Cabinet or Fume Hood are required for handling animals
  • Double gloves and N95 required for work outside of Biosafety Cabinet or Fume Hood
  • Secondary containment must be used for transportation of animals
  • Use of microisolator or ventilated cages and low dust bedding
  • MSDS sheets and a Chemical Information Sheet (if chemical designated a High Hazard Chemical) must be available in the Chemical binder of the housing rooms
  • Fluorescent Green cage card and door sign

Chemical Containment Level 4

CCL-4 is designated for projects involving chemicals with the highest risk to the researchers or LASC/LACF staff or the environment when directly handling animals that have been exposed to a potentially hazardous chemical.  The requirements for projects classified as CCL-4 will be addressed by EHS on a case-by-case basis.  Requirements may include the following beyond the requirements for the approved Animal Biosafety Level:

  • Procedural changes
  • Higher levels of personal protective equipment
  • Project-specific Standard Operating Procedures
  • MSDS sheets and a Chemical Information Sheet (if chemical designated a High Hazard Chemical) must be available in the Chemical binder of the housing rooms
  • Red cage card and door sign