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Every laboratory on UNC’s campus has electrically powered equipment that is used routinely in day-to-day operations. This equipment can pose a serious hazard if not properly maintained or improperly used. In addition, an electrical hazard could damage expensive equipment or wipe out years of research. All laboratory instruments and appliances should be adequately grounded and checked for current leakage.
Safety training required by the UNC Nephropathology Laboratory is offered through online study programs available to University and Hospital employees involved with clinical and/or non-clinical (research) activities. These programs offer information about safe working practices and provide an orientation to University and Hospital policies, and state and federal regulations. Safety training will be offered to employees based upon job duties.
The UNC Nephropathology Laboratory Safety Plan outlines the steps taken to ensure that laboratory employees and visitors are provided with an environment free from unnecessary hazards. In addition it describes specific staff activities designed to reduce the risk of injury and includes references to specific policies and procedures required by McLendon Clinical Laboratories and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC-CH) Environment, Health and Safety Office (EHS).
This document explains the University's approach to providing occupational health support for biomedical research. An occupational health program that supports staff with access to biological hazards, such as infectious agents or toxins, should aim to alleviate the risk of adverse health consequences due to potential exposures to biohazards in the workplace. Health services should be risk-based and tailored to meet the needs of individual staff and the research institution.
Each department head has the responsibility for ensuring that space allocated to his/her department is used safely and in compliance with occupational and environmental health and safety standards. This responsibility includes compliance with life safety codes and regulations involving the use, storage, and disposal of hazardous materials.
The health and safety of workers and building occupants is the most important factor to consider in laboratory work. In addition to these health and safety concerns, compliance with OSHA, Radiation Protection, and EPA regulations is also important because of the severe financial consequences, especially related to EPA hazardous waste regulations.