Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) are toxic and persist in the environment. Before their manufacture was banned in 1979, PCBs were used widely in electrical equipment, including transformers. Many transformers in use still contain traces of PCB-contaminated oil, even after the oil has been changed several times.
If synthesizing a hazardous chemical, the PI or manager must generate a Globally Harmonized System (GHS) compliant label and safety data sheet (SDS) before shipping or transporting the chemical away from the campus. Use this SDS template to make a GHS compliant SDS.
Chemicals are used in laboratories, maker spaces, shops and other areas across campus. EH&S provides information and guidance on safe practices for handling, storing, transporting and disposing of hazardous chemicals.
Many laboratories use hazardous chemicals that are purchased in large quantities and then transferred into smaller secondary containers (e.g., vials, flasks or bottles), or prepared as diluted solutions or mixtures for use.
If your laboratory uses secondary containers filled with chemicals, the secondary containers must comply with OSHA’s Hazard Communication Standard for Labels and Pictograms.
A Tacoma woman died from asphyxiation and her daughter-in-law is in critical condition after riding in a car with containers of dry ice. Even at normal room temperatures, dry ice will warm and release carbon dioxide gas, which can displace the oxygen inside a small, enclosed space.
Dry ice is commonly used in UW research. Its properties allow for rapid cooling of materials, but also pose unique worker safety hazards.
Does your lab share space or resources with other labs? If so, come to this session to learn more about best practices and tools that you can use to manage safety and compliance.
There will be a brief presentation followed by a Q&A session to address any questions or concerns you have about your shared spaces and resources.
Lead is a neurotoxin that accumulates in the body and damages the nervous system and causes blood disorders. Faculty, staff and students using metallic lead in a lab, shop or other workspace could be at risk for toxic lead exposure.
All quantities of metallic lead (e.g., metallic lead like bricks, buoy weights, window weights, lead sheeting, or solder) must be recorded in MyChem. MyChem is the UW’s chemical inventory management system and helps maintain our compliance with environmental and occupational health requirements.
This report is intended to provide guidance on identifying and evaluating potential risks related to storage of liquid nitrogen in laboratory space, and how to best mitigate those risks at the University of Washington. This paper provides an analysis of the available literature on the subject, example calculations of risk, and suggestions of best practices to detect an unsafe environment from liquid nitrogen and other cryogenic material spills and releases in rooms and spaces.
Summer in Seattle means hiking, biking, kayaking and ... lab work! Yes, many of us spend gorgeous summer days working in the lab. While it's fine to wear shorts, skirts, sandals or flip flops outside, wearing these items in the lab can expose you to hazards. We recommend keeping an appropriate change of clothes and shoes in the lab. Proper lab attire ensures your skin is covered and protected. Even if you aren't working with hazardous materials that day, your coworker might be, so always dress to protect yourself.
Secondary chemical container labels allow the user to identify chemical composition and mixtures while indicating hazards.