The December 2022 version of the UW Laboratory Safety Manual (LSM) is now available for download or printing. It's time to review, bookmark, or print a copy of the updated LSM and make it available for all staff and students in your lab. Keeping your safety documents up to date and easily accessible are key for staying safe.
Have you reviewed your full chemical inventory this year? Even if you have been adding to and deleting items from your inventory, you will still need to attest to a full review of the inventory by clicking the Review Inventory button at the top of the list.
Does your laboratory have volatile organic chemicals that produce strong, pungent odors even when the cap and bottle are intact? Controlling these smells, often found in chemical storage areas, will help reduce your risk of exposure.
Volatile organic chemicals can escape their containers, which presents an exposure risk to everyone in the lab. Restricting the ability for the chemical to disperse into the air can lower that risk.
Updated July 18. 2022
Keep in mind the facemask required for working in a lab is different than the facemask you may wear outside the lab.
As of June 30, 2022, MyChem requires users to upload a safety data sheet (SDS) when adding a new chemical to an inventory if that chemical does not currently exist in the MyChem database. Although this is not a new requirement, due to the high number of chemicals uploaded without SDSs, the MyChem system will now require an SDS when uploading chemicals.
Personnel working on UW research vessels can now add their chemical inventories into MyChem, the University’s chemical tracking system. UW employees who use chemicals or chemical-containing products at any UW owned or leased facility are required to maintain chemical inventories in MyChem, and chemicals can include, but are not limited to, paint, compressed gas cylinders, epoxies, and fuel.
A hazardous material spill is an uncontrolled release of a substance that is potentially hazardous to humans, animals and/or the environment. University personnel and students working with hazardous materials should be prepared to respond in case a spill occurs.
EH&S staff had an opportunity to speak with compliance inspector Chad Fisher from the Washington State Department of Ecology regarding three of the most common hazardous waste violations he's encountered at the UW. As it turns out, the majority of these violations are easily preventable and making simple corrections contributes to a safer lab environment.