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This manual is a safety reference document for laboratory personnel at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The University’s Department of Environment, Health and Safety prepared this manual, followed by review and approval from both the University’s Laboratory and Chemical Safety Committee (LCSC) and the University Safety and Security Committee (USSC).
The concern of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (“University”) for laboratory safety extends not only to employees but also to any persons visiting University laboratories, especially high school students and minors under the age of 18, who may potentially be exposed to hazardous materials. Laboratories are common sources of thermal dangers, compressed gases, electrical hazards, chemical, biological, and radioactive materials, lasers, and sharp objects.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued a standard (29 CFR 1910.1048) to ensure proper protection of all workers exposed to formaldehyde. The standard applies to all forms of formaldehyde including gas, aqueous solutions, solids, and materials that can release it.
To ensure that research laboratory freezer alarm systems (freezer alarms) are functional and compatible with existing monitoring equipment, this policy establishes guidelines for all university departments relating to the request for and installation and operation of freezer alarms. The existence of this policy is not a guarantee that the University will always be able to respond to freezer alarms or be able to restore temperate conditions quickly enough to prevent damage.
This chapter discusses the unique properties of nanomaterials, solid superatomic materials with at least one dimension in the range of one to 100 nanometers. Subsequent sections discuss the potential safety and health concerns from nanomaterials (based on cell culture and animal studies), the routes of exposure, and guidance on how to prevent exposures to nanomaterials.
This chapter describes safe work practices when using laboratory hoods, answers frequently asked questions about this important engineering control equipment, and references the Hood and Laboratory Ventilation Policy at UNC-Chapel Hill.
This chapter describes the containment principles of biological safety cabinets (BSCs), the various classes and types of BSCs and their uses, how to select the correct type of BSC for your needs, how to get approval for installation of a BSC, and their installation and certification requirements.
This chapter is an overview of the requirements for working with biological hazards. You can find more detailed information about working with biological hazards in the UNC Exposure Control Plan (Bloodborne Pathogens), the UNC Biological Safety Manual and on our website.
This chapter covers the hazards associated with laboratory animal handling, mandatory and recommended control practices, the institutional structures that UNC-Chapel Hill has in place to assure animal welfare, and requirements for using hazardous agents in laboratory animals.
This chapter describes the hazards associated with peroxide formation in chemical compounds, methods to detect peroxides, safe handling, use, and storage of peroxidizable compounds, and how to remove peroxide contamination from chemicals.
The characterization, management storage and disposal of laboratory wastes (i.e., chemical waste including hazardous and non-hazardous solid waste, radioactive or mixed waste, biohazardous and medical waste, and universal waste) is regulated and requires strict compliance with regulatory obligations.
This chapter provides resources that can help you prevent a laboratory accident due to mishandling explosive substances, or mixing incompatible reactive substances. This chapter details several specific examples of explosive and reactive hazards that are common in laboratories.
This chapter supplements previous chapters by giving specific extra precautions, postings, training, and protective equipment necessary when working with reproductive hazards. These include chemical, biological, or radiological substances that can affect the developing fetus, or the reproductive health of the male or female parents. This chapter also outlines the UNC conceptus protection policy for laboratory workers who are pregnant or contemplating pregnancy.
This chapter outlines the properties of flammable liquids, solids, and gases, the proper storage and use of flammable substances, and the properties of fire extinguishers.
This chapter gives definitions and protocols for chemicals that are classified as controlled substances by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration. Controlled substances have special rules for acquisition, storage, security, inventory/recordkeeping, disposal, and importing or exporting, detailed in this chapter. The appendices include a current list of controlled substances and forms for inventory support and personnel screening.