The Chemical Hygiene Plan

The Chemical Hygiene Plan (CHP) defines laboratory work practices, laboratory equipment, personal protective equipment, and procedures to help ensure that laboratory workers at Boston University and Boston Medical Center are protected from the hazards associated with the chemicals they use.

Regulatory Framework for the Chemical Hygiene Plan

The Chemical Hygiene Plan is also intended to meet and exceed the University’s compliance with the requirements of a Chemical Hygiene Plan as defined in the regulations promulgated on January 31, 1990 by the U.S. Department of Labor entitled “Occupational Exposures to Hazardous Chemicals in Laboratories” (29CFR 1910.1450). This regulation is known as the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Laboratory Safety Standard and will be referred to as such within this document.

According to the Laboratory Safety Standard, the Chemical Hygiene Plan must include:

  1. Standard operating procedures;
  2. Criteria to determine and implement specific control measures, such as engineering controls and personal protective equipment;
  3. A requirement that an ongoing program be developed to ensure that fume hoods and other engineering controls are functioning properly;
  4. Information and training requirements;
  5. Circumstances under which a particular laboratory function will require “prior approval”;
  6. Provisions for medical consultation and medical exams;
  7. Designation of a Chemical Hygiene Officer; and
  8. Additional precautions for work with select carcinogens, reproductive tox­ins, and extremely toxic substances.

This Chemical Hygiene Plan has been developed by Environmental Health and Safety in collaboration with the Laboratory Safety Committees. It describes in detail the policies, practices, procedures, equipment, and facilities used by Boston University’s Charles River Campus (CRC) and Medical Campus (BUMC) to ensure that all persons who work with chemicals at this institution do so in a safe manner and in compliance with all applicable federal, state, and municipal regulations and University guidelines. Please see the roles & responsibilities section of the CHP for details on the designation of authority and responsibility for implementation of the CHP.

In addition to the Laboratory Safety Committee, several other committees have authority to regulate certain aspects of work in laboratories. These committees may include the Radiation Safety Committee, the Institutional Biosafety Committee, the Laser Safety Committee, and the Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee. This document does not preempt any of the policies or procedures issued by these other committees. In cases where the jurisdictions of two committees overlap, the more stringent constraint applies.

This Chemical Hygiene Plan will be reviewed annually by the Laboratory Safety Committee and Environmental Health and Safety.

Who is the Chemical Hygiene Plan for?

The Chemical Hygiene Plan applies to every laboratory at Boston University that uses hazardous chemicals. Employees should direct questions about the Chemical Hygiene Plan or the safe use of chemicals to their Safety Coordinate, the Laboratory Supervisor/Principal Investigator, the Laboratory Safety Committees and/or Environmental Health and Safety.

This Chemical Hygiene Plan must be available to all laboratory workers prior to the commencement of laboratory duties. In addition to the Chemical Hygiene Plan, laboratory workers must be familiar with and adhere to all laboratory safety guidelines and procedures developed by their laboratory supervisor, Environmental Health and Safety and other University departments, and any federal, state, or municipal regulatory agencies.