Laboratory Safety Responsibilities

The responsibility for the management of laboratory safety and adherence to safe lab practices rests within units and departments. All personnel, including directors, supervisors, employees and students have a duty to fulfill their obligations with respect to maintaining a healthful and safe work environment.

Laboratory Directors are responsible to:

  1. Ensure that activities conducted within their area of responsibility comply with University policies and relevant legal requirements;
  2. Ensure that all personnel and students working within their unit are provided sufficient information, training and supervision to carry out their work safely;
  3. Ensure that all lab personnel are equipped with the required personal protective equipment (PPE) and to ensure that such PPE are maintained properly and used correctly;
  4. Ensure that safety devices and engineering controls are adequate, appropriate, and in good working order;
  5. Ensure that all personnel receive appropriate and adequate information and training to be able to respond to emergency situations;

Laboratory personnel are responsible to:

  1. Be familiar with the University and departmental safety instructions, whether written or oral, and to comply with these instructions when conducting laboratory work;
  2. Wear the appropriate personal protective equipment when present in the lab and when conducting work with hazardous materials or operations;
  3. Report all accidents, dangerous incidents or suspected occupational illnesses to their immediate supervisor without delay;
  4. Refrain from manipulating any hazardous materials prior to undergoing appropriate safety training and receiving safety instructions;

Visitors, contractors and non-laboratory personnel are responsible to:

  1. Obtain authorization from the lab director or designate prior to entering the lab;
  2. Abide by the instructions of the lab director or designate regarding restricted access and the use of personal protective equipment.

Adopted by the University Laboratory Safety Committee, on November 18, 2004. Amended on June 28, 2006

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