Laboratory safety is of paramount importance in the many labs in hospitals, universities and research facilities across the United States and the world. While there are specific guidelines on lab safety depending on the type of research or testing environment you are in, here are three general cornerstones of staying safe in a lab.
No Food or Drink in the Lab
Due to the risk of contamination from a toxic chemical or bacteria, never eat or drink in the lab and never store your food or beverages in the laboratory refrigerator. In addition to the risks to your food, having drinks in this workspace puts your expensive science equipment at risk of damage from spills. Regardless of which lab supply company Galveston TX you order from, keep your supplies clean by leaving food and drink in the hallway, classroom or office.
Know Where Things Are
While it is important to know where things are located in your workspace for convenience reasons, there are also safety reasons to knowing where certain safety equipment is located. For example, if someone gets a toxic chemical in their eye, they must be led quickly to an eyewash station. It is also imperative to note the locations of the nearest fire extinguishers to your lab.
Properly Dispose of Waste
Learn how to best dispose of different types of laboratory materials. Some ingredients might be okay to throw away in the regular garbage can, while others are meant to be incinerated when they are no longer needed. Learn your lab’s protocol for disposing of needles and other sharp objects. Lastly, never assume that the next person to use the lab will know how to clean up any mess you have made.
Laboratory safety is an ongoing learning process, and these three things are a good start to general safety in the science field.