(*This version of the Laboratory Safety Handbook was copied from the link http://www.eng.mcmaster.ca/links/handbook.htm, September 2005. Corrections have been made to Sections 11.2.1, 11.2.2, and 21.3, based on a hardcopy of the Handbook published in 1996.)
Version 2.0 of the Safety Handbook for Engineering and Science is available online.
This handbook is provided to assist you in maintaining high standards of safety practices and programmes in adherence to the obligations of the Ontario Occupational Health and Safety Act.
It is required reading for all persons supervising laboratory activities, and for all students, researchers, and employees in the Faculties of Science and Engineering.
Due to the detail of these documents, we have a provided a hyperlinked table of contents for your convenience:
2 McMaster University Health & Safety Policy
3.1 Mandatory Reading
3.2 Responsibilities and Liabilities
4 Useful Telephone Numbers
5 Responsibilities for Safety at McMaster University
5.1 Individual Responsibility
5.2 Faculty and Staff as Supervisors
5.2.1 Steps in the Resolution of a Health & Safety Concern
5.3 Resolution of a Health & Safety Concern
5.3.1 Right to Refuse
6 Joint Occupational Health & Safety Committees
6.1 Workplace Inspections
7 Specific Emergency Procedures
7.1 In Case of a Fire Alarm
7.1.1 In Case of a Fire in Your Lab/Office
7.1.2 Clothing on Fire
7.2 Chemical Spill on Body
7.2.1 Chemical Spill in Eye
7.2.2 Chemical Spill Indoors
7.2.3 Mercury Spill
7.2.4 Chemical Spill Outdoors
7.3 Biohazardous Spill in Level III Facility
7.4 Radioactive Spill
7.5 Medical Emergency
7.6 Bomb Threats
8 Reporting Accidents/Incidents
8.1 Workers' Compensation
9 Smoking Policy
9.1 Inline Skating Policy
10 Fire Safety
10.1 Fire Extinguishers
10.1.1 Guide to Portable Extinguishers
10.2 Fireproof Blankets
11 Safety Training Programs
11.1 General Orientation
11.2 WHMIS (Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System)
11.2.2 Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS)
11.3 Workplace Specific Training
11.4 Other Health & Safety Training
12 Hazardous Waste Management
12.1 Pathological Waste Disposal
12.1.1 Pathological Waste Disposal Procedure
12.1.2 Recommended Segregation and Containment
12.1.3 Safety Recommendations for Pathological Waste
12.1.4 Universal Precautions
12.2 Hazardous Waste Chemicals
12.2.1 Hazardous Waste Chemical Procedure
12.2.2 Times of Waste Operation
12.2.3 Safety Recommendations for Handling Hazardous Chemical Wastes
12.2.4 Additional Chemical Waste Disposal Information
12.2.5 Disposal of Empty Glass Containers
13 Laboratory Safety Equipment
13.1.1 Fumehood Maintenance
13.1.2 Fumehood Operation Guidelines
13.3 Eye Wash Stations
13.4 Backflow Prevention
14 Personal Protective Equipment
14.2 Eye Protection
14.3 Laboratory Coats
14.4 Hearing Protection
14.5 Personal Protective Equipment Available in Scientific Stores
14.6 Routes of Entry
15 General Recommended Guidelines for Working in Laboratory
15.1 Procedure for Vacating Laboratories
16 Radiation Safety
16.1 X-Rays - Generators
16.2 Laser Safety
16.3 U.V. Radiation
17 Electrical Safety
17.1 Static Electricity and Sparks
19 Compressed Gases
19.1 General Precautions
20.1 Designated Substances
20.2 Occupational Health & Safety Legislation and Environmental Legislation
20.3 Chemical Inventories
21 Storage of Chemicals
21.1.3 General Guidelines for Storage of Chemicals
21.2 Compatible Groups
21.3 Incompatible Chemicals
21.4 Specific Storage Requirements
21.4.1 Unstable Chemicals - Peroxide Formers
21.4.2 General Precautions for Peroxide Formers
21.5 Highly Toxic, Carcinogenic or Mutagenic Chemicals
21.7 Flammable Liquids
21.9 Water Reactives
21.10 Perchloric Acid
22 Resources for Occupational Health & Safety and Environmental Information
22.2 Video - Tapes
Safety standards are designed to reduce to an acceptable level the risks inherent in the use of dangerous materials and potentially dangerous procedures or practices. All laboratories can be inherently dangerous places and the attitudes and actions of those who work in the laboratory determine their own safety and that of their colleagues and ultimately that of the community.
Different standards are set for different levels of risk. High levels of risk require more stringent standards than lower levels of risks. Compromises are, therefore, made in setting safety standards so as not to impede much needed research while keeping risks of those involved to a minimum. Laboratory equipment and design has become more sophisticated and safer, but safe operation still depends on properly trained and genuinely concerned personnel, who are safety conscious all the time.
Throughout this manual proper training and knowledge of equipment and materials is stressed. With the WHMIS legislation suppliers are required to provide Material Safety Data Sheets and these should always be consulted prior to working with a new material. Always assure that a knowledgeable and safety conscious person trains you in the safe use of specific equipment. Document the training whenever possible.
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH AND SAFETY POLICY
It is the policy of McMaster University to provide and maintain healthy and safe conditions on its premises for all employees, students and visitors, by the enforcement of legislative requirements as contained in the Ontario Occupational Health and Safety Act, Environmental Protection Act, their regulations, and other statutes, plus all policies, rules, or instructions issued by the University.
Both the employer and all employees are responsible jointly for compliance and enforcement of the rules and regulations and to take appropriate steps to prevent accidents, occupational illnesses, injuries, or adverse effects upon the natural environment.
It is the responsibility of all employees to familiarize themselves with the Ontario Occupational Health and Safety Act and Regulations, plus other statutes and their regulations, and all university rules, or instructions that pertain to the health and safety of the work environment. Contact your departmental office, joint health and safety committee representative, or the Department of Environmental Health & Safety to obtain information.
Deans, chairs, research supervisors, managers and supervisors are responsible for the safety of employees, students and visitors who work and study within their areas of jurisdiction and for compliance with statutory and university requirements.
Employees have a duty to comply with statutory requirements and with a supervisor's instructions, work safely and report all unsafe and unhealthy conditions, not only in the interests of their own health and safety, but that of other employees, students and visitors.
It is the responsibility of all external contractors, sub-contractors and their workers to meet or exceed the university's environmental health and safety program requirements.
Although the Occupational Health and Safety Act exempts students from the legislation, they are required by University policy to comply with all University health, safety and environment rules.
All employees, supervisors, students and visitors will be held accountable for environmental health and safety performance.
3. PURPOSE OF MANUAL
The manual may be supplemented as new information becomes available or as new legal standards are developed.
3.1 MANDATORY READING
Every person working or intending to work in a laboratory must read this document.
3.2 RESPONSIBILITIES AND LIABILITIES
Everyone actively engaged in laboratory work is legally responsible for safety performance. All laboratory personnel must meet the legal requirements of various environmental and health and safety statutes. It is expected that adherence to this manual is a good starting point for establishing an acceptable laboratory safety program.
More detailed and specific safety procedures and practices may be necessary. Everyone is encouraged to develop and use practices which exceed the basic information in this manual.
Any deviation from this manual must be to establish safer practices. Everyone should be able to justify that reasonable care and deliberation has been exercised before the implementation of any changes.
By not using recommended practices in this manual or safer alternatives, individual liability may increase.
Therefore, always take reasonable care to ensure that safety considerations are included in all laboratory endeavours.
The Manual is intended to provide basic rules for safe work practices in a laboratory. The procedures may be supplemented with safer work practices where applicable.
The manual is by no means all encompassing and any omission is not an excuse for unsafe practices.
In all cases the individual supervisor is ultimately responsible for teaching safe work practices and must insist upon the use of such proper procedures to eliminate unnecessary hazards.
The individual supervisors must identify, and supplement this manual with safe procedures and training specific to the needs of their laboratory safety programs, when the safety subject is not adequately covered by this manual.
4. USEFUL TELEPHONE NUMBERS
McMaster University Emergency Line 88
Central Utilities Emergencies 24229/27478
Central Utilities Emergencies, Heat and Ventilation concerns 24 hours
Mid Campus Physical Plant Team 24768
South Physical Plant Team 24273
Central Physical Plant Team 24216
Hazardous Waste Management 23314
PCB's - 23314
Department of Environmental Health and Safety, Director, Len Hong 24653
Department of Environmental Health and Safety, Safety Officer, Lisa Morine 23314
Accident Prevention Manager, Christel Farrell 23564
Poison Control Centre, Toronto 9-1-800-268-9017
Student Health Services (in McKay Hall) 24441
MUMC Emergency Room (84) - 5020
Public Emergency Line 9-911
AT McMASTER UNIVERSITY
5.1 INDIVIDUAL RESPONSIBILITY
It is the responsibility of each member of the McMaster Community to know all emergency procedures, location and use of safety equipment and exit routes in case of an emergency. Consult your supervisor for more information.
5.2 FACULTY AND STAFF AS SUPERVISORS
In the Occupational Health and Safety Act a supervisor's responsibilities are described.
Some criteria defining a supervisor are:
A faculty member is a supervisor under certain circumstances, particularly when an employee directly or indirectly reports to the faculty member. Research technicians, departmental technicians, students hired and paid to provide service, clerical and administrative staff are some examples of employees for which the faculty member may be the supervisor.
The Occupational Health and Safety Act of Ontario (OHSA) expects and may legally require that the supervisor be held accountable for supervisory compliance to legal obligations.
Although supervisors may delegate safety tasks, they (the supervisors) are still held accountable for ensuring that the tasks are adequately performed.
The following is a summary of responsibilities according to the OHSA. Please refer to the OHSA for specific wording.
Employers (McMaster University)
5.2.1 STEPS IN THE RESOLUTION OF A HEALTH & SAFETY CONCERN
1. First Response - this must be with the supervisor according to legal requirements
2. Second Response - if no satisfactory resolution is achieved with the supervisor, the concern may be brought to the attention of the Departmental and/or Faculty Occupational Health & Safety Committee.
3. Third Response - at times the involvement of senior administration may be necessary.
- The Department of Environmental Health & Safety may be consulted at any time after the problem has been discussed with the supervisor.
4. Last Response - The underlying principle of the Occupational Health and Safety Act of Ontario is that of an internal responsibility system. Therefore, the Ministry of Labour should only be consulted if all other attempts (1, 2 & 3) have failed to bring satisfactory resolution to a health and safety problem.
5.3 RESOLUTION OF A HEALTH AND SAFETY CONCERN
In Occupational Health and Safety matters the supervisor and workers share the responsibility for the "workers" safety.
In all cases, if a hazard or unsafe situation is identified, the worker must inform the supervisor as quickly as possible. The preferred method of resolution is between the supervisor and the worker, however the issue, if unresolved may require discussion at the Joint Occupational Health & Safety Committee.
If the concern is relevant to the department or faculty, the supervisor should bring this concern to the attention of the particular faculty administration (i.e. Chair or Dean). A worker should raise this type of concern with their Joint Health & Safety Committee representation, if their supervisor has not adequately resolved the concern. Again, it is expected that the committee will decide if the concern is to be forwarded to the employer.
5.3.1. RIGHT TO REFUSE WORK
This right may be exercised by a worker who has reason to believe that any machine, equipment, device or thing he is to use or operate is likely to endanger himself or another worker, or that the physical condition of the workplace is likely to endanger himself or that any machine he is to use or place he is to work in is in contravention of the Act and is therefore likely to endanger himself or another worker.
When a worker uses his/her right to refuse the specific procedure spelled out in the Occupational Health and Safety Act, Section 43, must be followed.
JOINT OCCUPATIONAL HEALTH
& SAFETY COMMITTEES
The Faculty Health and Safety Committee is an advisory group of worker and management representatives. Both the Faculty of Engineering Joint Occupational Health and Safety committee and the Faculty of Science Joint Occupational Health and Safety Committee are the legally required committees for their respective faculties. McMaster University has 8 legal committees. Within each department of the Faculties of Science and Engineering there is a safety sub-committee. The names of the committees and their members should be posted outside the main departmental and faculty office. On each committee at least half of the representatives must represent "workers" (see Occupational Health and Safety Act S. 8(5). The legal committees have the following rights and responsibilities:
The committees also may hold monthly meetings.
The employer has a general duty to co-operate with the committee and assist it to carry out its responsibilities.
For a complete explanation of the function and role of the committee see "A guide for Joint Health and Safety Committees and Representatives in the Workplace" published by the Ontario Ministry of Labour. The booklet is available from the Department of Environmental Health & Safety.
6.1 WORKPLACE INSPECTIONS
Regular inspections of the workplace help to identify hazards and prevent accidents. It is the Departmental Safety Committee's responsibility to schedule and conduct regular inspections. The entire workplace must be inspected at least once a year.
Other workers and the employer must give the safety representative information and assistance to carry out these inspections. Most departments have developed check lists to help with the inspection process and have made it specific for their particular environment.
7. SPECIFIC EMERGENCY PROCEDURES
7.1 IN CASE OF A FIRE ALARM
Immediately vacate the building VIA the nearest Exit Route. DO NOT USE ELEVATORS!
7.1.1 IN CASE OF A FIRE IN YOUR LAB/OFFICE
The safety of all people in the vicinity of a fire is of foremost importance.
Evacuate and close door; leave fumehoods on.
PHONE 88, GIVE LOCATION AND DETAILS.
Report all incidents to your supervisor, Joint Occupational Health & Safety Committee and to the Department of Environmental Health & Safety within 2 days by filling out Safety/Incident Report Form.
7.1.2 CLOTHING ON FIRE
Douse with water from safety shower immediately
Roll on floor and scream for help
Wrap with fire blanket to smother flame (a coat or other non-flammable fibre may be used if blanket is unavailable).
N.B. - DO NOT USE FIRE EXTINGUISHER ON PEOPLE
PHONE 88, GIVE LOCATION AND DETAILS.
7.2 CHEMICAL SPILL ON BODY
7.2.1 CHEMICAL IN EYE
7.2.2 CHEMICAL SPILL INDOORS
Decide if you can safely handle the spill. If unsure, call 88 for assistance.
If safe to do:
If unsafe or unable to clean up spill:
7.2.3 MERCURY SPILL
Mercury vapours are highly toxic.
7.2.4 CHEMICAL SPILL OUTDOORS
7.3 BIOHAZARDOUS SPILL IN LEVEL III FACILITY
7.4 RADIOACTIVE SPILL
7.5 MEDICAL EMERGENCY
7.6 BOMB THREATS
8. ACCIDENT/INCIDENT REPORTING
NOTE: All unusual incidents and emergencies whether personal injury resulted or not, must be reported and documented within 2 days, by filling out a McMaster University Safety/Incident Report. The person witnessing the occurrence, the person directly involved or the supervisor may fill out the report. Instructions are on the form. The report must be signed by the supervisor and the person reporting the incident. The forms are available from your departmental office and Department of Environmental Health & Safety.
An unusual incident could be a near accident, any incident that could have resulted in an injury, cuts, abrasions, needle sticks, burns, direct chemical exposure, etc.
8.1 WORKERS' COMPENSATION
If a person has received a work-related injury or has developed an occupational disease, the costs for medical aid and for the lost time resulting from the injury will be covered by the "Workers' Compensation Board of Ontario". The Department of Environmental Health and Safety must be informed immediately if an injury, which required medical aid, has occurred.
For more detailed information regarding Workers' Compensation, consult the Manager, Accident Prevention at extension 23564.
9. SMOKING POLICY
McMaster University's Smoking Policy conforms with provincial and municipal legal requirements. With the exception of licensed food and beverage establishments, or private residence rooms, no smoking is permitted inside any campus building.
Fines of $2,000 may be assessed to anyone contravening the City Smoking By-Law. For a copy of the complete "Smoking Policy" contact the President's Office.
9.1 INLINE SKATING POLICY
This policy applies to all in-line-skating on campus whether done by persons working on campus, attending classes, conferences or sport events and it is the responsibility of all persons that engage in-line-skating to make themselves aware of the policy.
This policy shall also apply to the general public who use the property of McMaster for the purpose of in-line-skating. Notice of such compliance will be posted at each of the University's main entrances in an appropriate manner.
In-line-skating will be restricted to roadways only and shall not be performed on sidewalks, lawns or other areas not accessible by motor vehicles.
In-line-skating within any building of University is strictly prohibited. All in-line-skates shall be removed at the entrance to any building and cannot be used except at the exterior to the building exit. In-line-skating shall not be carried out on ramps specifically provided for mobility impaired persons.
In-line-skating is strictly prohibited on any prepared sport surface such as, but not limited to, the tennis courts, track areas or sports fields.
It is recommended that the in-line skater wear, as a minimum, the following safety equipment:
Organized in-line-skating events on McMaster University property is strictly prohibited unless authorized in writing from the Conference Services Office.
10. FIRE SAFETY
Every member of the McMaster Community is responsible for knowing the location of the nearest fire extinguisher, the fire alarm, and the nearest fire escape. Everyone should become familiar with the use of a fire extinguisher.
10.1 FIRE EXTINGUISHERS
Installed throughout campus according to the fire code. Physical Plant is responsible for their maintenance. They are inspected monthly.
All laboratories where flammable solvents are used must be equipped with a fire extinguisher.
If an extinguisher is used assure that it is prompt refilled. Immediately contact Physical Plant, extension 24302.
Problems with fire extinguishers - Phone extension 24302.
10.1.1 GUIDE TO PORTABLE EXTINGUISHERS
In selecting the appropriate extinguishers for the laboratory, the type of combustible material must be considered.
10.2 FIREPROOF BLANKETS
Fireproof blankets, usually made of 100% wool, are used to wrap a burning victim to smother a fire. Do not wrap a standing person, because of a chimney effect; lay the victim down to extinguish the fire. The blanket should be removed once the fire is out in order to disperse the heat and thus minimize tissue damage. These blankets may also be used to keep injured persons warm. (Discard any fire blankets made with asbestos.)
11. SAFETY TRAINING PROGRAMS
11.1 GENERAL ORIENTATION
Every new staff member at McMaster University has an opportunity to attend a general orientation to become familiar with structure and organization of the University.
11.2 WHMIS (WORKPLACE HAZARDOUS MATERIALS INFORMATION SYSTEM) MANDATORY TRAINING
Anyone working with or in proximity to hazardous materials must attend a WHMIS training session prior to commencement of work.
For laboratory personnel training is arranged through the office of Environmental Health and Safety for the Faculty of Science or Faculty of Engineering.
For office staff, training is offered by the Department of Environmental Health & Safety.
WHMIS stands for Workplace Hazardous Materials Information system.
This is Canada wide legislation and all workers that work with or are in the proximity of hazardous materials must have WHMIS training. WHMIS is also known as the "right to know" legislation. Workers are entitled to know the dangers of the materials they use on the job and how to protect themselves from these dangers by reading the labels and the MSDS (Material Safety Data Sheet).
WHMIS contains three major components:
The labels on the container may be from the supplier. In this case the label will contain information on material identifier, WHMIS hazard symbol, risk phrase, precautionary statement, first aid instructions, MSDS referral and the identity of supplier.
Another type of label is the workplace label. These are currently available at the ABB Scientific Stores and the Dept. Of Biology main office at no charge. The labels are used by employees when decanting a chemical from a larger container into a smaller container to be used within the labs.
Some departments use these labels on bottles already having a supplier label in order to keep track of when the chemical was received and who it belongs to. In this way, housekeeping is made easier in the lab.
Within WHMIS chemicals are put into 6 different classes to identify their hazards. Within these classes, there are symbols identified with each class. Within class D, there are three hazard symbols.
Class A Compressed Gas
Class B Flammable and Combustible Material
Class C Oxidizing Material
Class D Division 1 - Poisonous and Infectious Material
Immediate and Serious Toxic Effects
Class D Division 2 - Poisonous and Infectious Material
Other Toxic Effects
Class D Division 3 - Poisonous and Infectious Material,
Biohazardous Infectious Material
Class E - Corrosive material
Class F - Dangerously reactive material
11.2.2 MATERIAL SAFETY DATA SHEETS (MSDS)
MSDS are available for every substance controlled under WHMIS
The MSDS contains 9 Categories of information. They are:
These categories can be listed in any order as long as the sections are complete.
Below with their definitions are some terms you may encounter within each category.
Source of detailed information on the material. The emergency telephone number which enables a user to obtain hazard information and a physician or nurse to obtain information for medical diagnosis or treatment.
Chemical identity of the controlled product or ingredient(s) of the product or of any ingredient in the product that is included in the Ingredient Disclosure List and is above specified concentration. The chemical identity must be disclosed if an ingredient has unknown toxicological properties or if the supplier believes it might be harmful.
Physical State: whether the material is normally a solid, liquid or gas at room temperature.
Fire or Explosion Hazard of Material
The circumstances and ease with which a material will ignite either spontaneously or from explsure to a high temperature or to a spark or open flame.
Chemical Stability: indicates whether a material is stable or unstable under reasonable, foreseeable conditions of storage, use or misuse. For unstable materials, conditions which may cause a reaction are listed.
The means by which the material enters the body. This may be by inhalation, ingestion, contact with or absorption through the skin or eyes.
Devices or items of apparel worn to protect a worker from injury due to hazards that may be encountered.
First Aid Measures
Emergency treatment to be given in case of overexposure to the product via eyes, skin, inhalation and/or ingestion.
Name and telephone number of the person(s) responsible for the preparation of the material safety data sheet. Date of preparation of the sheet.
The MSDS is valid for a period of three years.
WHMIS Core training is done on continual basis throughout the year. This is a three hour training session and is mandatory for anyone working with or in the proximity of hazardous materials. More specific training should be done by your supervisor. This specific training is just as important as the core training.
Everyone should attend a WHMIS update yearly, information may be obtained from the Environmental Health and Safety Office.
11.3 WORKPLACE SPECIFIC TRAINING
This is the responsibility of the supervisor. The supervisor must assure that staff under his/her jurisdiction have been thoroughly trained and informed to carry out their duties in a safe manner. The specific training conducted by the supervisor includes the storage, handling, use and disposal of chemicals, electrical safety, hazard identification and information resources, equipment safety, and safety pertaining to a particular research project or procedure.
11.4 OTHER HEALTH AND SAFETY TRAINING
As the need arises other specific training sessions i.e. Asbestos, Compressed Gases, etc. are offered through the Department of Environmental Health and Safety and through individual departments.
12. HAZARDOUS WASTE MANAGEMENT
Hazardous waste disposal is managed by the Department of Environmental Health & Safety. For information phone extension 23314.
Hazardous Chemical & Pathological waste disposal is regulated federally through Environment Canada, provincially through the Ministry of the Environment and Energy (MOEE) (Environmental Protection Act) and locally through the Regional Municipality of Hamilton-Wentworth enacted Sewer-Use By Law.
It is McMaster University's policy to comply with all legislation to protect the environment.
NOTE: IF CONVICTED OF CONTRAVENING THE REGIONAL SEWER-USE BY-LAWS, FINES UP TO $30,000 MAY BE LEVIED TO YOU OR YOUR DEPARTMENT.
12.1 PATHOLOGICAL WASTE DISPOSAL
PATHOLOGICAL WASTES are infectious or suspect infectious materials, other biological or biologically contaminated materials, which require special disposal procedures.
12.1.1 PATHOLOGICAL WASTE DISPOSAL PROCEDURE
1. Segregate pathological waste and put in proper containment i.e. autoclave bags
2. Label waste according to above categories - autoclave if necessary
3. Transport to Psychology Building - Cold Storage Room
Life Sciences - Cold Storage Room
4. Transfer contained wastes into Pathological Waste Boxes
5. A contracted, licensed and MOEE approved carrier seals and removes the waste boxes for legally acceptable disposal
12.1.2 RECOMMENDED SEGREGATION AND CONTAINMENT
NOTE: DO NOT package human anatomical wastes with other wastes.
12.1.3 SAFETY RECOMMENDATIONS FOR PATHOLOGICAL WASTE
12.1.4 UNIVERSAL PRECAUTIONS
Applies to all blood, body fluids, body tissues or extracts.
Hepatitis B vaccine or other relevant vaccinations are recommended.
12.2 HAZARDOUS WASTE CHEMICALS
Hazardous Waste Chemicals are materials which are of no further research, academic or commercial use, which cannot be recycled, reclaimed or rendered non-hazardous. Hazardous wastes may be characterized as one or more of the following:
12.2.1 HAZARDOUS WASTE CHEMICAL PROCEDURE
RE: Hazardous chemical waste.
DISPOSAL TIMES AT LIFE SCIENCES ARE TUESDAYS 1:15 - 1:45 p.m.
In the basement of LSB beside the elevator
WASTE LABELS AND INVENTORY FORMS are available from CHEMICAL STORES in the Arthur Bourns Building, in Biology's Main Office, or from the office of Environmental Health & Safety Gilmour Hall B111 at no charge.
12.2.2 TIMES OF WASTE OPERATION
Arthur Bourns Basement Receiving Area
9:30 - 11:30 a.m.
UNLESS OTHERWISE POSTED
NOTE: UNLABELLED WASTES WILL NOT BE ACCEPTED!
OWNERSHIP & LIABILITY FOR WASTES REMAINS THE RESPONSIBILITY OF THE GENERATOR UNTIL ACCEPTANCE BY THE FINAL CONTRACTED EXTERNAL RECEIVER.
12.2.3 SAFETY RECOMMENDATIONS FOR HANDLING HAZARDOUS CHEMICAL WASTES
12.2.4 ADDITIONAL CHEMICAL WASTE DISPOSAL INFORMATION
Chemical Hazardous Waste is managed by the Safety Officer of the Department of Environmental Health and Safety. An inventory is kept of all wastes received.
N.B. CHEMICAL WASTE DISPOSAL IS COSTLY.
For example, disposal of a "lab-pack" containing 60-70 l. of waste chemicals costs $500.00. Some special chemicals such as air and water reactives or cyanides cost $150.00/kg to dispose. Therefore, please:
NOTE: The Safety Officer will assist with any attempts made to recycle material, especially larger quantities. Informal exchange of chemicals among researchers is frequently arranged.
Please call extension 23314 for information.
SPECIAL DISPOSAL PROBLEMS - i.e. Peroxides or highly reactive compounds, please contact the office of Environmental Health and Safety at extension 23314 for instructions.
12.2.5 DISPOSAL OF EMPTY GLASS CONTAINERS that contained chemicals:
13. LABORATORY SAFETY EQUIPMENT
Properly functioning fumehoods are an important safety device in a laboratory.
In emergency situations such as fires, gaseous emissions or spills in a fumehood always pull the sash down completely and assure hood fans are turned on.
13.1.1 FUMEHOOD MAINTENANCE
Fumehood maintenance is the responsibility of the Department of Physical Plant.
Fumehoods are checked annually for:
Fumehoods are maintained to operate within the original design specifications
In case of malfunction call:
13.1.2 FUMEHOOD OPERATION GUIDELINES
13.3 EYE WASH STATIONS
13.4 BACKFLOW PREVENTION
14. PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT
For any work in a laboratory a lab coat, eye protection, gloves and proper footwear is recommended.
Personal protective equipment suitable for the operation as specified by the supervisor must be worn.
It is the individual's responsibility to maintain personal protective equipment in good condition.
The supervisors are responsible for supplying the required personal protective equipment.
Gloves can protect your hands from many hazards.
There are many different types of protective gloves available and they should be chosen carefully to offer the best protection for specific procedures and chemicals. Be aware that different glove materials have different chemical permeabilities and this should be checked with the manufacturer before choosing a specific glove type.
Nitrile and neoprene gloves offer good protection against chemicals.
Always check the integrity of your gloves before starting work.
Scientific stores carry a number of different gloves but for specialized needs individual orders must be made through Purchasing.
Remove gloves, before leaving the laboratory.
14.2 EYE PROTECTION
Remember contact lenses should not be worn while working in a laboratory with chemicals.
Depending on the protection required during a specific procedure regular safety glasses, chemical safety goggles or a full face shield may be necessary.
Again, follow your supervisor's established procedural guidelines.
Prescription safety glasses are not covered by the Major Medical Benefits Plan and individuals must make their own arrangements for the provision of these.
NOTE: In most laboratories eye protection is a requirement.
14.3 LAB COATS
Lab coats provide additional protection and it is recommended that they be worn at all times in a lab especially when working with chemicals.
Contaminated lab coats should not be washed at home with other laundry.
Lab coats should not be worn outside of the laboratory, except when going from one lab to another.
14.4 HEARING PROTECTION
It is recommended that hearing protection be worn if average noise levels exceed 85 db(A) (decibels) over an 8 hour period. It is permissible to be at noise levels greater than 85 dBA for short periods of time without hearing protection. Contact the Department of Environmental Health & Safety for more information.
Again follow procedural guidelines.
14.5 PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT AVAILABLE IN SCIENTIFIC STORES
For specialized personal protective needs consult safety supply companies.
14.6 ROUTES OF ENTRY
Inhalation is the most common route of entry into the body. Other routes are ingestion, absorption and the eyes.
Ingestion-material enters the body by mouth. Ingestion of toxic materials may occur as a result of eating or drinking in a contaminated work area. Also may occur by mouth pipetting, which is not an acceptable practice.
Skin and Eye Absorption-Material that enter by these routes may cause local effects or may be absorbed by the body.
Inhalation-Material taken in through the lungs. Most common route of entry. Odour may not be detectable at a level which will not harm you. Exercise caution.
15. GENERAL RECOMMENDED
FOR WORKING IN LABORATORIES
16. RADIATION SAFETY
For Ionizing Radiation (Isotopes, X-Rays) Safety Matters at McMaster University, contact the Department of Health Physics, extension 24226.
All Radiation Safety Policies and Procedures must be strictly adhered to.
16.1 X-RAYS - GENERATORS
16.2 LASER SAFETY
16.3 UV RADIATION
17. ELECTRICAL SAFETY
17.1 STATIC ELECTRICITY AND SPARKS
STATIC ELECTRICITY AND SPARKS MAY CAUSE A FIRE UNDER THE RIGHT CIRCUMSTANCES. ALWAYS BE CONSCIOUS OF THE POTENTIAL FOR GENERATING SPARKS.
Some protection from static electricity and sparks is obtained by proper grounding and bonding of containers and equipment.
A dry atmosphere promotes the formation of electrical charges.
Common sources of sparks and static electicity are:
Before commencing new experiments involving biohazards, consult with the Biosafety Committee to determine the required level of containment.
Information on the Biosafety Committee may be obtained from the Safety Office in the Faculty of Health Sciences, extension 24956.
The Medical Research Council of Canada and Health and Welfare Canada have published guidelines commonly referred to as M.R.C. guidelines, which must be adhered to at all times when dealing with biohazardous work.
Some general guidelines are:
19. COMPRESSED GASES
"Compressed Gases" is a generic term and includes compressed gases, liquified compressed gases and cryogenic liquified gases. Different hazards are associated with compressed gases depending on their physical and toxicological properties. Always read the labels carefully and check the Material Safety Data Sheets for a particular type of gas.
19.1 GENERAL PRECAUTIONS
The following hazards are associated with Cryogenics:
Precautions for handling cryogens:
20.1 DESIGNATED SUBSTANCES
The following substances, if present in any amount in your laboratory, causes a legally required written assessment to determine the risk of exposure and health efffects be made. A draft of the assessment should be discussed by the Joint Health and Safety Committee. The use, handling, storage and exposure to these chemicals is strictly regulated by the Ontario Ministry of Labour. (see Designated Substances Regulations). Prior to working with any of these substances the appropriate regulation must be consulted.
Call your Joint Occupational Health and Safety Committee or The Department of Environmental Health and Safety for information.
20.2 OCCUPATIONAL HEALTH & SAFETY LEGISLATION AND ENVIRONMENTAL LEGISLATION
The Ontario Occupational Health and Safety Act (1978) and Regulations specifies rights and responsibilities of employers, supervisors and workers. Copies should be posted for your reference in your working area. They are available from the Bookstore. Contact your Safety Committee if they are not found in your work area.
The Act states that an employer must post a copy of the Act and any explanatory material prepared by the Ministry of Labour in the workplace. The "workplace" could be the departmental office.
It is your responsibility to perform the legal duties, as employees, supervisors or employer, in conformance with the obligations of this Act and its Regulations.
20.3 CHEMICAL INVENTORIES
The Faculty of Science and Faculty of Engineering requires the creation and maintenance of inventories of all hazardous materials and of all hazardous physical agents.
The inventories are to be prepared in consultation with the Joint Occupational Health and Safety Committees. The committees must have access to the inventory.
The Department of Environmental Health and Safety maintains the complete database of all hazardous materials on campus. Individual supervisors are responsible for updating the inventory on an annual basis, no later than the 1st day of February for the previous year. The updated version of the inventory must be provided to the Department of Environmental Health & Safety by January 1st of each year.
The following points are suggested for you to efficiently and quickly maintain an updated inventory:
21. STORAGE OF CHEMICALS
Choose an area away from offices and emergency exits, if possible.
Only authorized personnel should have access to chemical storage area.
In chemical storage areas ventilation should be at the ceiling and at the floor level to prevent buildup of vapours heavier than air. The area must be temperature controlled.
21.1.3 GENERAL GUIDELINES FOR STORAGE OF CHEMICALS
21.2 COMPATIBLE CHEMICAL GROUPS
**These chemicals deserve special attention due to their potential instability.
21.3 INCOMPATIBLE CHEMICALS
The previously outlined storage scheme may not suffice to prevent the mixing of incompatible chemicals. Even chemicals of the same classification may form highly hazardous combinations. So always inform yourself by reading the label and the Material Safety Data Sheet carefully. For compatibility data more specialized literature may have to be consulted.
Following is a list of common incompatible chemicals.
|Acetic Acid||Chromic acid, nitric acid, hydroxyl compounds, ethylene glycol, perchloric acid, peroxides, permanganates|
|Acetone||Concentrated nitric and sulfuric acid mixtures, chlorinated solvent/alkali mixtures|
|Acetylene||Chlorine, bromine, copper, fluorine, silver, mercury|
|Alkali & alkaline earth metals (such as powdered aluminum, or magnesium, calcium, lithium, sodium, potassium)||Water, carbon tetrachloride or other chlorinated hydrocarbons, carbon dioxide, halogens|
|Ammonia (anhydrous)||Mercury (in manometers, for example), chlorine, calcium hypo-chlorite, iodine, bromine, hydro-fluoric acid (anhydrous)|
|Ammonium nitrate||Acids, powdered metals, flammable liquids, chlorates, nitrites, sulfur, finely divided organic or combustible materials|
|Aniline||Nitric acid, hydrogen peroxide|
|Arsenical materials||Any reducing agent|
|Carbon (activated)||Calcium hypochlorite, all oxidizing agents|
|Chlorates||Ammonium salts, acids, powdered metals, sulfur, finely divided organic or combustible materials|
|Chromic acid & chromium trioxide||Acetic acid, naphthalene, camphor, glycerol, alcohol, flammable liquids in general|
|Chlorine||Ammonia, acetylene, butadiene, butane, methane, propane (or other petroleum gases), hydrogen, sodium carbide, benzene, finely divided metals, turpentine|
|Chlorine dioxide||Ammonia, methane, phosphine, hydrogen sulfide|
|Chloroform||Strong bases, ketones and strong base, alkaline metals, aluminum, strong oxidizers|
|Copper||Acetylene, hydrogen peroxide|
|Cumene hydroperoxide||Acids (organic or inorganic)|
|Flammable liquids||Ammonium nitrate, chromic acid, hydrogen peroxide, halogens|
|Hydrocarbons (such as butane, propane, benzene)||Fluorine, chlorine, bromine, chromic acid, sodium peroxide|
|Hydrocyanic acid||Nitric acid, alkali|
|Hydrofluoric acid (anhydrous)||Ammonia (aqueous or anhydrous)|
|Hydrogen peroxide||Copper, chromium, iron, most metals or their salts, alcohols, acetone, organic materials, aniline, nitromethane, combustible materials|
|Hydrogen sulfide||Fuming nitric acid, oxidizing gases|
|Hypochlorites||Acids, activated carbon|
|Iodine||Acetylene, ammonia (aqueous or anhydrous), hydrogen|
|Mercury||Acetylene, fulminic acid, ammonia|
|Nitric acid (concentrated)||Acetic acid, aniline, chromic acid, hydrocyanic acid, hydrogen sulfide, flammable liquids, flammable gases,|
|Nitroparaffins||Inorganic bases, amines|
|Oxalic acid||Silver, mercury|
|Oxygen||Oils, grease, hydrogen; flammable liquids, solids or gases|
|Perchloric acid||Acetic anhydride, bismuth and its alloys, alcohol, paper, wood, grease, oils|
|Peroxides, organic||Acids (organic or mineral), avoid friction, store cold|
|Phosphorus (white)||Air, oxygen, alkalies, reducing agents|
|Potassium||Carbon tetrachloride, carbon dioxide, water|
|Potassium chlorate||Sulfuric and other acids|
|Potassium perchlorate (see also chlorates)||Sulfuric and other acids|
|Potassium permanganate||Glycerol, ethylene glycol, benzaldehyde, sulfuric acid|
|Silver||Acetylene, oxalic acid, tartaric acid, ammonium compounds, fulminic acid|
|Sodium||Carbon tetrachloride, carbon dioxide, water|
|Sodium nitrite||Ammonium nitrate and other ammonium salts|
|Sodium peroxide||Ethyl or methyl alcohol, glacial acetic acid, acetic anhydride, benzaldehyde, carbon disulfide, glycerin, ethylene glycol, ethyl acetate, methyl acetate, furfural|
|Sulfuric acid||Potassium chlorate, potassium perchlorate, potassium permanganate (similar compounds of light metals, such as sodium, lithium)|
21.4 SPECIFIC STORAGE REQUIREMENTS
21.4.1 UNSTABLE CHEMICALS - PEROXIDE FORMERS
Many chemicals, most notably ethers, may form explosive decomposition products.
Ethers, Liquid Paraffins and Olefins form peroxides especially in the presence of air and light. Some common examples include isopropyl ether, diethyl ether, tetrahydrofuran and dioxane. Since most of these products have been packaged in an air atmosphere, peroxides can form even if the containers have not been opened.
21.4.2 GENERAL PRECAUTIONS FOR PEROXIDE FORMERS
NOTE: There are specific tests available to check for the presence of peroxides. Test paper for peroxides is available in the A. Bourns Science Store.
21.5 HIGHLY TOXIC, CARCINOGENIC OR MUTAGENIC CHEMICALS
21.7 FLAMMABLE LIQUIDS
21.9 WATER REACTIVES
21.10 PERCHLORIC ACID (Concentrated, 70%)
22. RESOURCES FOR OCCUPATIONAL HEALTH AND SAFETY AND ENVIRONMENTAL INFORMATION
MATERIAL SAFETY DATA SHEETS
Before working with any hazardous material read the Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS) carefully.
Find out how your area complies with the OHSA regulation for MSDS accessibility.
LOCATIONS AND ACCESSABILITY
Useful resource information regarding Occupational Health and Safety matters, as well as Environmental Issues may be obtained from the following sources:
22.1 SOME SPECIFIC REFERENCES
These references may be borrowed from the Department of Environmental Health and Safety extension 23314.
22.2 VIDEO TAPES