Laboratory Safety and Compliance Responsibilities Email from Dr. Samuel L. Stanley Jr., M.D., President

From: Samuel L. Stanley Jr., M.D., President
To: ALL Academic and Research Deans, Chairs, Directors, Principal Investigators and Lab Safety Coordinators
Date: 02/20/2012
Subject: Laboratory Safety and Compliance Responsibilities

We are writing to bring to your attention some recent developments related to a number of laboratory accidents and to emphasize the need for your awareness and personal involvement to assure the safety of all laboratory personnel and facilities. More»

Principal Investigators and Lab Supervisors

Safety responsibilities for Principal Investigators and Lab Supervisors include:

  • Register lab with the EH&S Lab Registration system. Update registration information at least annually.
  • Know and implement the guidelines and procedures of the Chemical Hygiene Plan and other EH&S Policies. Include provisions for these policies in grant proposals.
  • Write specific operating procedures or protocols for handling and disposing of hazardous materials and equipment used in their laboratories. Ensure written procedures are used by lab staff.
  • Train laboratory staff in these operating procedures and ensure the use of proper control measures. All safety training must be documented. The "New Lab Worker Checklist" can be used to document this training.
  • Conduct routine inspections of laboratories with their laboratory employees.
  • Ensure that all appropriate controls including fume hoods and safety equipment are available and in good working order in their laboratories.
  • Ensure that all incidents occurring in their laboratories are reported to EH&S and that a written Incident Report is filed.
  • Complete annual inventories of hazardous materials as required in their laboratories and provide them to EH&S.
  • Ensure laboratory employee access to Safety Data Sheets (SDSs) and other safety resources.
  • Hold lab staff accountable for all safety rules, including the use of appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE).
  • Comply with the requirements of University Policy P609 Environmental Health & Safety

PI Responsibilities Handout

Lab Safety Coordinator

Each lab group or department needs to appoint someone as Laboratory Safety Coordinator. The Laboratory Safety Coordinator will assist with the implementation of the EH&S Laboratory Safety policies and assists in establishing a safe work environment by collaborating with EH&S, faculty, other researchers and lab personnel. Additional responsibilities include:

  • Coordinate laboratory safety and environmental compliance efforts based on EH&S programs.
  • Serve as liaison between the laboratory and EH&S in helping maintain safety and regulatory information, including Material Safety Data Sheets.
  • Attend training sessions provided by EH&S, sharing information with department.
  • Participates in campus-wide labsafety listserve.
  • Distribute safety information to all lab personnel. Communicates information on identified hazards, precautions, and required corrective actions throughout the department.
  • Assist EH&S in evaluating program effectiveness.
  • Conduct or coordinates periodic laboratory self-inspections.
  • Routinely communicate and advise PI, Department Manager/Chair on safety and injury/illness prevention efforts and activities.
  • Provide guidance on laboratory safety compliance to other laboratory members.
  • Request information and clarification on regulatory requirements from EH&S.
  • Assist in responding to any regulatory actions or investigations.
  • Participate in the development of the Laboratory Emergency Plans and assists with emergency management planning and response as needed.
  • Maintain safety records such as copies of accident reports, lab audits, & fire code violations
  • Ensure that lab personnel receive all required EH&S training and lab specific information.
  • Oversight that safety conditions in the laboratories are met.
  • Assist supervisors in properly investigating and documenting all accidents and injuries.
  • Maintain laboratory safety postings.
  • Assist in developing, implementing, and communicating departmental safety policies and programs.
  • Coordinate laboratory submissions of hazardous materials inventories to EH&S for annual updates and storage relocations.
  • Communicate with the Building Manager on facility issues related to safety.

Departmental Laboratory Safety Coordinators List

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