The following safe work practices should be followed when working in the laboratory:

  • Read and become familiar with the Chemical Hygiene Plan and any Standard Operating Procedures developed specifically for the laboratory prior to working in the laboratory.
  • Become familiar with the location and use of emergency equipment and facilities, such as:
    1. eyewash and safety showers,
    2. fire extinguishers,
    3. fire blankets, if applicable;
    4. fire alarm pull stations,
    5. emergency exits, and
    6. chemical spill equipment.
  • Never eat, drink, smoke, chew gum, apply cosmetics, or manipulate contact lenses in the laboratory.
  • Never leave exposed sharps, micropipettes, or broken glass on the bench or in washing facilities.
  • Keep chemical containers closed unless actively in use.
  • Clearly label all containers of any substance. The label must include, at a minimum, the complete chemical name of the substance. If possible, it should also include the concentration and any hazards of the substance.
  • Remove Personal Protective Equipment (gloves, lab coats, aprons, protective foot and headgear) before leaving the laboratory.
  • Discard, decontaminate, clean, or sanitize personal protective equipment on a regular basis.
  • Always wash hands after removing gloves before leaving the laboratory.