Good Neighbor Requirements for Shared Open Lab Spaces
- To ensure timely radioactive and chemical waste removal schedule pick up when containers are 75% full.
- Biohazardous waste containers including sharps containers should be removed at 75% full and taken to be autoclaved.
- Each chemical waste container must have an associated inventory sheet of its contents do not use abbreviations. Use full chemical names.
- Double containment of liquid waste containers is even more important in a shared lab. Prevent accidents from happening!
- Do not share chemical waste containers with other lab groups as dangerous unexpected chemical reactions could occur.
- Label all hazardous material and equipment. Use warning signs to designate particular hazards.
- Do not block aisles, hallways and exit routes. Placement of small portable file cabinets and mobile carts are prohibited.
- Know the location of your eye wash and safety shower before you need to use them. Keep these areas clear and unobstructed.
- Notify neighbors immediately in the event of a spill. Ask for help from your immediate neighbors and have a communication plan for emergencies.
- Notify neighboring groups that you are conducting experiments using hazardous materials. Consider the worst possible scenario and have a plan for when things go wrong.
Safe Work Practices
- 18-inch clearance from the ceiling is required for storage.
- Fume Hoods shall not be used to store chemicals.
- Organize with your neighbors into floor groups and meet regularly to discuss safety concerns. Required Environment, Health, and Safety annual training can be conducted during these meetings.
- Open collaborative lab spaces require vigilant and continually improving work practices. Consider your laboratory neighbors in all aspects of your work.
- Cross contamination risks are greater in a shared lab space. Use care in performing experiments.
- Notify collaborators of routine maintenance on shared equipment and potential problems from any laboratory devices.
- Practice good housekeeping and universal precautions always. Universal precautions means wearing appropriate PPE even when you think it may not be necessary. Do not take any unnecessary risks. Safety First!
- “Every researcher must understand that it is a matter of teamwork and personal responsibility to maintain a safe laboratory environment.” (Modica, Professional Safety, page 30, July 2007)