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CBS Refresher Lab Safety Training. Please sign the session roster sheets. This training session will be recorded in Peoplesoft. (the sheets are available as you enter. Sign at your name.) If you are not on the list, write your name LEGIBLY and please include your Employee ID number.

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Refresher Lab Safety Training

Please sign the session roster sheets. This training session will be recorded in Peoplesoft. (the sheets are available as you enter. Sign at your name.) If you are not on the list, write your name LEGIBLY and please include your Employee ID number.


David Okita

Biochemistry, Molecular Biology & Biophysics

6-155 Jackson Hall

(612) 624-7107


This sessions covers Lab Safety, Chemical Safety and Chemical Waste Management

Refresher Training Only!


General Lab Safety Training

Required for All

All University of Minnesota faculty, staff, and students that work in or supervise individuals working in laboratories are required by law to receive training regarding safety issues and practices in their work place. Training is mandated by both the federal Laboratory Safety Standard and the Minnesota Employee Right to Know Act and is required upon hire, at refresher intervals (at least annually), and whenever a new procedure is introduced.

Environmental Health and Safety (DEHS) provides basic safety training for new faculty, staff, and students. Three web-based tutorials that are mandatory for all lab workers are available at


Lab Specific Training

Encouraged for All

Each Principal Investigator and/or laboratory supervisor is responsible for ensuring that employees are provided with training addressing specific hazards (chemical, physical, and biological) in their laboratory or work area. Training must address the specific hazards of the procedure and personal protective equipment available to reduce the potential risk of exposure to the particular hazard. Training must be provided at the time of an employee's initial work assignment and prior to assignments involving any new potentially hazardous situations. Refresher training must be provided annually.



  • Compliance Inspections
  • Injury Reports

Inspections by the County, AAALAC, EPA, DEHS and your departmental RSO have indicated some improvements but we still have some problems.


Good News!

  • Signs of Improvement
  • Less food in the labs
  • Better Labeling and Segregation
  • of Hazardous Waste
  • The EPA really liked the Posters
  • and and saw lots of Yellow labels
  • Better Lab Attire

Proper Lab Attire

  • Skin must be protected from hazardous liquids, gases and vapors, proper basic attire is essential in the laboratory. Long hair should be pulled back and secured and loose clothing (sleeves, bulky pants or skirts) avoided to prevent accidental contact with chemicals or open flames. However, bare feet, sandals and open-toed or perforated shoes are not permitted in any laboratory.Short pants and short skirts are not permitted unless covered by a lab coat. Long pants should be worn to cover skin that could be exposed during a spill.

Chapter 3, section 2 of the University of Minnesota Lab Safety Plan


Areas That Need Improvement

  • Chemical Storage
    • Top Issue: Incompatible chemicals stored together (e.g. acids and bases or organics and in-organics stored together)
    • Chemicals and Solvents without secondary containment

Chemical Labeling

  • Containers not labeled
  • Sharps Containers
  • Overfilled or improper items (e.g. pipettes)
  • Do Not Recap Needles
  • Eyewashes need to be inspected and documented weekly!

Injuries and Accidents!

  • Numerous lab accidents.
  • Explosions, Fires, Burns, Cuts, Spills and Fainting!
  • A few injuries requiring Workman’s Compensation were reported.
  • How can we avoid these?
  • Review your SOPs and make sure to address the specific hazards for each procedure!
  • Lab Audits

Reporting Injuries

Forms available at the U of M forms library


Contact your Department RSO



Biological Waste

  • What is Autoclaved:
  • All disposable lab ware contaminated with potentially infectious materials (blood, body fluids, human cell culture media, bacteria culture media)
  • Except Pasteur pipettes, Pasteur pipettes should be disposed of in red sharps container.
  • Culture plates
  • Culture media
  • Animal cages and bedding from infected animals

Autoclaving Procedure

  • Use autoclave indicator tape on outside of bag to show that waste has been processed.
  • Place waste material on a large, metal, leak-proof tray.
  • Metal containers transfer heat more efficiently than plastic containers.
  • Container should be large enough and shallow enough to allow for ample steam circulation.
  • If autoclaving more than one bag at a time, be sure there is ample room between the bags so steam circulation is not impaired.
  • Autoclave at 121ーC for 60 minutes.
  • After autoclaving is complete, tape bag shut or tighten rubber band and place in regular trash receptacle.

Liquid Waste

To autoclave liquid waste, place liquid in beaker or flask, not in autoclave bag.

Autoclaved liquid culture waste can be sewered unless hazardous chemical waste is present. If hazardous chemical waste is present follow procedures in the Hazardous Chemical Waste Management Guidebook at

Do not sewer melted agar as it will congeal and clog the plumbing.


Autoclave Testing:

      • Autoclave indicator tape does not prove decontamination effectiveness.
      • For highest confidence in decontamination effectiveness, each load should be tested.
      • If autoclaving for less than 60 minutes, each load must be tested.
      • 3M Comply (Thermalog) chemical integrator strips provide immediate test results.
      • These can be purchased from U Stores - CX12607.
      • Attach the indicator strip to a stick or string and put in the center of the load.Retrieve after autoclaving for confirmation that the entire load has been exposed to the conditions necessary for decontamination.If the indicator reads unsafe, autoclave again.

Let be careful out there!

  • Remember to do your lab audits
  • Check to be sure your protocols cover safety hazards and mitigation plans.
  • Contact your Department RSO
  • Getting rusty? You might consider re-doing the initial training online at