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Working Safely With Chemicals. Environmental Health & Safety Department 6 Eisenhower Parking Deck 865-6391 Let No Harm Be Done. Environmental Health and Safety Department. Asbestos Abatement Biological Safety Emergency Planning: Oil & hazardous materials

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environmental health safety department 6 eisenhower parking deck 865 6391 www ehs psu edu

Environmental Health & Safety Department6 Eisenhower Parking

Let No Harm Be Done

environmental health and safety department
Environmental Health and Safety Department
  • Asbestos Abatement
  • Biological Safety
  • Emergency Planning: Oil & hazardous materials
  • Environmental Assessments
  • Ergonomic Assessments
  • Fire Safety
  • Hazardous Material & Oil Storage Management
  • Indoor Air Quality
  • Laboratory Safety Radiation Safety
  • Radiation Safety
  • Waste Management: radioactive, hazardous and biological
ehs safety policy sy01 responsibilities supervisor
EHS Safety Policy (SY01):Responsibilities: Supervisor:
  • All supervisors are familiar with policies and rules and provide for the health and safety of those supervised. They are in a key position in the organizational structure to carry out the department's safety policies and to prevent injuries to their employees.
  • Ensure that required safety equipment, devices and personal protective equipment and apparel are provided and maintained, and are properly used by individuals working in their operations.
  • Provide employees and students with instruction and assistance in the proper operation of equipment or materials involved in any operation which may be potentially hazardous. Provide for health and safety training.
  • Take prompt corrective action when unsafe conditions, practices or equipment are reported or observed. Encourage reporting of concerns.
  • Promptly conduct a thorough investigation in all work-related injuries, illnesses and accidents, submit appropriate recommendations on all accident reports, including the Employer's Reports of Occupational Injury or Illness (page 4.19) or theIncident Report (page 8.05), as appropriate, and follow through to ensure corrective measures have been implemented.
  • Coordinate or conduct inspections to maintain safe and healthful conditions, and address any deficiencies that are identified.
ehs safety policy sy01 cont d responsibilities employee student
EHS Safety Policy (SY01): cont’dResponsibilities: Employee/Student
  • Comply with applicable environmental health and safety policies, standards, rules, regulations and procedures. These include safety-related signs, posters, warnings and written/oral directions when performing tasks.
  • Do not perform any function or operation which is considered hazardous, or is known to be hazardous without proper instructions and authorization.
  • Only use equipment and materials approved or provided by the supervisor or instructor and for which instruction has been provided by this or other experience.
  • Become thoroughly knowledgeable about potential hazards associated with the work area; knowing where information on these hazards is maintained and how to use this information when needed.
  • Wear or use prescribed protective equipment.
  • Report all unsafe conditions, practices, or equipment to the supervisor, instructor or safety officer whenever deficiencies are observed.
  • Inform the supervisor or instructor immediately of all work-related injuries or accidents and obtain prompt medical attention when necessary.
  • Provide information necessary for the supervisor or safety officer to adequately and thoroughly complete the Employer's Report of Occupational Injury and Illness and any other associated accident/illness reports
working safely with chemicals1
Working Safely with Chemicals
  • Chemical Safety Concepts
  • Safe Use and Storage
  • Disposal
  • Emergencies
  • Radiation Safety
chemical safety
Chemical Safety
  • TOXICITY -- the ability of a chemical substance to cause harm
  • HAZARD -- likelihood a material will cause harm under the conditions of use
    • With properhandling, even highly toxic chemicals can be used safely
    • Less toxic chemicals can be extremely hazardous if handled improperly.
exposure to toxic chemicals
Exposure to Toxic Chemicals
  • Exposure to toxic agents can have severe consequences, including death
  • These injuries can occur in any area where toxic chemicals are handled
  • Most chemical injuries could have been avoided
    • If these people had had the proper equipment, if they had been using the proper techniquesand if they had had adequate knowledge, such as exposures probably would not have occurred.
chemical safety1
Chemical Safety
  • Keep worker’s exposure below the Permissible Exposure Limit (PEL)
    • PEL’s are regulatory limits set by OSHA on the amount or concentration of a substance in the air.
  • Plan in advance for potential hazards
  • Designate a person to manage chemical safety
  • Train and inform workers
  • Label ALL chemical containers
  • Keep file of MSDS for all chemicals used (EHS)
have a plan that includes
Have a Plan that includes:
  • Standard operating procedures (SOP)
  • Exposure control measures
  • Fume hood & personal protective equipment
  • Information & Training
  • Chemicals that require prior planning & approval
  • Working with Particularly hazardous substances
  • Emergencies
key to working safely understand the hazards
Key to Working Safely ….. Understand the Hazards!
  • Know and prepare for hazards in advance
  • Review Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS)
    • Physical and Health Hazards
    • Exposure signs and symptoms
    • Protective measures
    • Emergency procedures
  • Read all labels
  • Know your protocol / procedures
  • Remember, some chemicals may have delayed toxic effects on the body
physical hazard hazards due to physical characteristics of a chemical
Physical Hazard …..Hazards due to physical characteristics of a chemical
  • Flammable - catches fire easily and burns rapidly
  • Combustible - will burn under most conditions
  • Explosive - will explode / detonate releasing hot gases
  • Oxidizer - yields oxygen to enhance combustion, may cause ignition of combustibles with no external source
  • Organic peroxide - uniquely hazardous, potentially explosive
  • Unstable - tends to decompose during normal handling and storage
  • Water reactive - reacts with water to release flammable gas, causes fire or presents a health hazard
health hazard produces acute or chronic effects in exposed workers
Health Hazard ……Produces acute or chronic effects in exposed workers
  • Carcinogen - cause cancer or suspected to cause cancer
  • Toxic Agent - poisonous / cause acute or chronic effects
  • Reproductive toxin (teratogen) - could have harmful effect on male or female reproductive system or on developing fetus
  • Irritant - can cause inflammation of skin or eyes
  • Corrosive - cause irreversible damage to living tissue
  • Sensitizer - cause exposed person to develop allergies to the substance
  • Target organ-specific agents - hazardous to specific organs in body (e.g., lungs, liver, blood, kidneys, nervous system)
Route of Entry….For a chemical to have an effect on a worker, s/he must be exposed to it and some of it must get into his/her system
  • Inhalation / breathing - most common route, gases / vapors can pass to blood, solid particles inhaled into lungs
  • Absorption through the skin - many solids, liquids, vapors and gases can be absorbed through the skin
  • Ingestion / swallowing - while not intentional, failure to wash hands, eating in contaminated lab, etc.
  • Injection - accidents handling glass, sharps, etc.
  • Eye Contact - either physical damage or absorption

The route of entry dictates selection of protective equipment

signs symptoms how will you know if you have been exposed
Signs & Symptoms ….How will you know if you have been exposed?
  • Dose - Amount of chemical absorbed depends upon chemical strength / concentration, exposure duration, frequency of exposure
    • In general, the greater the dose, the more severe the health effects
  • Acute effects - occurs rapidly following brief exposure (e.g., acid burn)
  • Chronic effect - develops/recurs slowly, over long period following repeated, long-term, low-level exposure (e.g., benzidine linked to bladder cancer)
  • Individual variability - not all people exhibit the same signs and symptoms (especially to chronic effects)
working safely with chemicals2
Working Safely with Chemicals
  • Chemical Safety Concepts
  • Safe Use and Storage
  • Disposal of Chemicals
  • Emergencies
  • Radiation Safety
personal protective equipment ppe
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
  • Always wear PPE:
    • Good lab practice
      • Eye protection for workers
      • Wear enclosed gogglesor face shield over safety glasses if chance of splashing or shattering
    • Shoes, lab coat, long pants (gives protection from falling objects and spills/splatters)
    • Plastic/rubber apron for caustics/corrosives
    • Correct gloves for chemical
    • Never reach into liquids, use tongs for retrieval
chemical fume hood
(Chemical) Fume Hood
  • Ventilated enclosure that protects you from being exposed to chemical fumes, gases and aerosols generated within the hood
  • Room air drawn into the hood is vented out the stack
  • Hood should always be ON during use
  • Lower sash to marked (< sash level >) position
fume hood inspection program
Fume Hood Inspection Program
  • Regular inspection
  • Tested for adequate flow
  • Results labeled on hood
  • Safe sash level marked

(< sash level >)

Never use an unsafe fume hood

fume hood considerations
Fume Hood Considerations
  • Turbulence caused by:
    • Rapid hand movements in / out of hood
    • Obstructions at airfoil
    • Persons walking by creating disturbance
  • Limit Sash Area
    • Performance improves as sash opening decreases
    • Keep at or below the “safe” (< sash level>) level





  • NFPA Diamond -

used by fire / rescue personnel

Special hazard

chemical storage considerations
Chemical Storage Considerations …..
  • Dry Chemical Storage
    • Keep organic and inorganic separated
  • Liquid Chemical Storage
    • Determine major storage groups (acid, base, etc.)
    • Designate separate storage for highly toxicchemicals
    • Store only cleaning materials under sink
chemical storage requirements
Chemical storage requirements
  • Inventory chemicals annually (see SY24)
  • Dispose of old and unused chemicals through EHS following chemical waste requirements.
  • Segregate chemicals according to hazard, i.e. flammables separate from oxidizers, acids separate from bases
chemical storage cont d
Chemical Storage cont’d
  • Keep containers closed unless you are working with container - do not store waste containers open with funnels in opening, do not evaporate solvents as a means of disposal.
  • Ensure all containers are labeled - no abbreviations or formulae
safe storage
Safe Storage ….
  • Flammable Liquids
  • Corrosive Materials
  • Reactive (Oxidizers and Reducers)
  • Cryogenics
  • Gas Cylinders
flammable liquid storage
Flammable Liquid Storage …..
  • Keep quantities below allowable storage limits (SY08 Storage, Dispensing and Use of Flammable Liquids)
  • UL-approved safety cans
  • Store flammable liquids in an approved storage cabinet (combined total volume of liquids not greater than 120 gallons with no more than 60 gallons of Class I or II).
  • No more than 3 storage cabinets per fire area.
corrosive material storage
Corrosive Material Storage …..
  • DO NOT store acids and bases together
  • Material should be stored in cabinets
  • Store heavy containers on lower shelves
  • Store on shelves with raised edges
  • Do not store liquids above eye level
  • Glacial acetic acid has special storage requirements-store with flammable liquids
Reactive ….


  • Chemicals that react with other substances; can result in fire or explosion
  • Oxidizers supply oxygen to a fire


  • Chemicals that react with water, water vapor or moist air
  • Produces a flammable or toxic gas


  • Chemicals that ignite on contact with air
  • Flame may often be invisible
reactive storage
Reactive Storage ….


  • Acids from Bases
  • Acids and bases from flammables
  • Pyrophoric compounds from flammables
  • Perchloric acid from reducing agents
  • Water from water reactive chemicals
    • Sodium/phosphorus & aqueous material - fire
    • Acid with cyanide compounds - toxic gas
    • Chlorine & ammonia - toxic chloramines
  • Store thermally unstable materials in approved refrigerator
chemicals requiring special precautions
Chemicals Requiring Special Precautions….

For chemicals with high degree of acute toxicity, select carcinogens & reproductive toxins:

  • Establish designated area
  • Proper storage and management
  • Use engineering controls (e.g., fume hood)
  • Use appropriate PPE
  • Waste removal
  • Decontamination procedures
  • Emergency planning and response
cyrogenic materials
Cyrogenic Materials …..
  • Cold (e.g., Ar (-302oF), H2 (-423oF), N2 (-320oF), O2 (-297oF)) vapors can rapidly freeze human tissue
  • Produces large volumes of gas that can displace breathable oxygen
  • Materials can be embrittled
  • Boiling/splashing occurs when charging or filling a warm container
  • Wear face shields during transfers, loose fitting, dry leather or cryogenic gloves and long pants w/o cuffs
gas cylinders sy30
Gas Cylinders ….(SY30)
  • Chain or strap cylinder to wall/bench
  • Always use a cart & safety chain when transporting cylinder
  • Store flammable gas lecture bottles in flammable storage cabinet
  • Keep non-compatible gases separate
  • Store multiple cylinders by “nesting”
  • Store oxidizers 20 ft. from flammable gases
electrical safety
Electrical Safety

Fires are often caused by damaged electrical equipment and the misuse of such equipment.

  • check all equipment for damaged and worn insulation on wiring
  • connect ground wires to clean metal
  • keep wires and other electrical equipment away from water & hot surfaces
  • avoid use of extension cords,(designed for temporary use only)
  • avoid homemade/makeshift wiring (use approved wiring methods)
  • never touch a switch/outlet with wet hands
  • do not use electrical equipment in a flammable atmosphere (I.e. electrical plug strip in a fume hood)
pollution prevention
Pollution Prevention

Buy Less, Use Less, Store Less!

  • keep volatile chemical containers capped.
  • store chemicals in vented cabinet, don’t use fume hood for storage
  • keep waste solvent containers capped when not using
  • substitute less hazardous chemicals
  • avoid mercury, EHS exchanges thermometers
  • redistribute surplus chemicals through EHS
  • Provide secondary containment for 55 gallon drums of potentially polluting materials that are located in areas where they could leak into a drain or escape to the environment.
working safely with chemicals3
Working Safely with Chemicals
  • Chemical Safety Concepts
  • Safe Use and Storage
  • Disposal of Chemicals
  • Emergencies
  • Radiation Safety
disposal of unwanted chemicals
Disposal of Unwanted Chemicals …..

Chemical Disposal Methods….

  • In-Lab Chemical management
  • On-Site Hazardous Materials Management - OSHMM
  • Redistribution of Unwanted Chemicals -


in lab chemical management
In-Lab Chemical Management
    • Flushing down the sanitary sewer (limited to chemicals on drain disposal guideline SYG01)
    • Neutralization
    • Normal Trash
  • If you have questions or are uncomfortable with steps outlined for in-lab management, please call EHS at 814-865-6391
acid neutralization hydrochloric phosphoric sulfuric 50 acids
Acid Neutralization(hydrochloric, phosphoric, sulfuric, [<50%] acids)

Use fume hood & wear PPE

  • Dilute acid with cold water to 1:10 (always add acid to water)
  • Slowly add sodium carbonate or calcium carbonate until pH between 5 & 10
  • Allow solids to settle
  • Decant solution to drain with at least 50 times the volume of water
  • Allow solid to dry and package for disposal in normal trash
on site hazardous materials management
On-Site Hazardous Materials Management
  • Annual review of chemicals
  • Removal of surplus chemicals and chemical waste
  • Evaluate gas cylinders, unknowns & potential explosives
  • Laboratory and Stockroom cleanouts

Request a chemical waste pick-up by contacting

chemical disposal
Chemical Disposal
  • Complete Chemical p-u request prior to pick up
    • Download from web:
  • All containers must be labeled with red tags
  • Mixtures, solutions and powders must be in chemically compatible containers
  • No beakers, flasks, leaking containers or bottles without caps.
  • It’s free!!!!
waste accumulation cont d
Waste accumulation cont’d
  • Labeling - each container of waste must be labeled with a red tag (supplied by EHS)
  • Waste accumulation areas must be under the oversight of someone who works in that area
oversight requirements
Oversight requirements
  • Check area once a week
  • sign and date check list
  • back-up overseer for times of illness or vacation
  • post accumulation area with sign
designated waste accumulation area or where should i put waste before you pick it up
Designated waste accumulation area orWhere should I put waste before you pick it up?
  • An area close to the point of generation and under the oversight of the person generating the waste
  • Secondary containment must be used for waste storage - EHS provides 2 sizes of containment bins: one large enough for 5 gallon containers and one for smaller bottle sizes.
where does chemical waste go when it leaves my area
Where does chemical waste go when it leaves my area?
  • Fill out Chemical Waste pick-up request form on web (
  • EHS staff picks up waste in less than a week
  • Waste is stored at central facility for less than 90 days and picked up by Hazardous waste Company
internal audit
Internal Audit
  • Audit your waste program once a year to verify compliance
  • Supervisor and Dept. head must sign audit
  • Waste Management Manual available on web,
  • Manual must contain
    • location of accumulation area
    • form documenting waste area oversight
    • form documenting annual inventory of chemicals
    • copies of training records
    • audit form
wastes with added precautions
Wastes with added precautions...
  • Toxic - lead acetate, mercuric chloride, mixtures containing > 0.5 ppm benzene
  • Reactive - sodium metal, extremely dry picric acid, some organic peroxides
  • Corrosive (pH < 2 > 12.5) - nitric acid, aqueous sodium hydroxide, hydrochloric acid
  • Ignitable (flashpoints <140o) - acetone, xylene, and acetonitrile
  • Dioxins, PCBs, etc.
laboratory stockroom cleanouts
Laboratory & Stockroom Cleanouts
  • Call EHS to do walk through if PI is leaving
  • Someone from area must assist
    • EHS will sort, categorize, sewer, bulk & neutralize
    • Remaining chemicals entered on p-u request Form
redistribution of surplus chemicals
Redistribution of Surplus Chemicals

Sealed Containers Unsealed Containers


Expiration Date Usable by Others

Good Shape Past History

Usable by Others Quality not Assured

Pure Products

If you would like to get on our mailing list or have questions, please contact Kevin Myers at 814-865-6391

disposition of wastes
Disposition of Wastes …..
  • Halogens, flammables, bulked into 55-gallon drums and shipped
  • Waste Chemicals - packaged and shipped for disposal
  • Surplus Chemicals - labeled, put on shelves, advertised for redistribution
  • ~$250,000 annual disposal costs

What is a Sharp?

  • Device that can cut or easily puncture the skin
  • Unused, disinfected/contaminated: hypodermic needles, razor blades, scalpel blades, lancets, syringes and Pasteur pipettes
  • Other contaminated infectious wastes: broken glass vials, lab slides or fragile glass

Disposable Lab Glass?

  • empty bottles, test tubes, uncontaminated broken glassware, uncontaminated glass pipettes, other plastic labware
sharps disposal
Sharps Disposal ….
  • Segregate from other wastes
  • Place in rigid plastic boxes with tight-fitting lids
    • maroon 5 gallon barrels for non hazardous glass. Sharps containers for infectious materials.
  • Fill container only 3/4 full
  • Materials must be autoclaved
  • User/Lab takes infectious material containers to building’s collection site (autoclave room)
infectious wastes
Infectious Wastes ….

Nothing that contains pathogens/human blood can go to a landfill!!!!

  • Infectious or biologically contaminated material
  • Materials that have been used for recombinant DNA work

2 Disposal Methods:

1. Autoclave and place in infectious waste barrel

2. For liquids, add bleach to 10% of total volume, incubate 1 hour and pour down drain

hazardous glass disposal
Hazardous Glass Disposal ...
  • Disinfect ALL infectious waste
  • Empty any hazardous chemicals/drain liquids
  • Dispose in glass disposal maroon barrel.
working safely with chemicals4
Working Safely with Chemicals
  • Chemical Safety Concepts
  • Safe Use and Storage
  • Disposal of Chemicals
  • Emergencies
  • Radiation Safety
chemical emergencies
Chemical Emergencies


  • Simple Spill -- one which you can safely clean up yourself
  • Major Emergency or High Hazard Spill -- one which you can not safely clean up yourself
chemical emergency response
Chemical Emergency Response

To Clean Up a Simple Spill

  • Notify your fellow workers and supervisor
  • Control Access to the area, prevent contact or spread of spill
  • Call EHS for advice and to report as soon as possible

EXAMPLE: 500 ml of a dilute acid

chemical emergency response1
Chemical Emergency Response

Major Emergency

Call 911 for

  • Fires (even if you extinguish it yourself)
  • Explosions
  • Injuries
  • Unknown vapors, fumes or smoke
  • Spills that threaten human health or the environment
  • Incidents which you can not deal with safely
  • Contact EHS as soon as emergency has been addressed.
911 emergency information
911 Emergency Information

Provide the following:

  • Name
  • Building and Room number
  • Address
  • Type of Emergency (i.e, Fire, Spill, Explosion)

Any Injuries


emergency eyewash safety shower
Emergency Eyewash / Safety Shower
  • Keep area around safety equipment clutter free
  • Portable squeeze bottles are NOT acceptable
  • Flush affected area for at least 15 minutes
  • For spill on clothing / skin:
    • Remove clothes
    • Wash with soap and water
    • Follow info on MSDS for decon steps
    • Seek medical advice
prepare for chemical emergencies
Prepare for Chemical Emergencies
  • Know where fire extinguishers, emergency showers and eyewash stations are located and how to use them
  • Your unit should :
    • have reviewed MSDS Sheet prior to beginning work
    • have PPE (I.e, gloves, goggles) for spill cleanup
    • Have updated Emergency phone numbers posted
ppc plan
  • Preparedness Prevention and Contingency Plan:
    • 25 Pennsylvania Code and Guidelines for the Development and Implementation of the Environmental Emergency Response Plans.
ppc plan cont d
  • The PPC plan is intended to serve as a tool for planning to prevent a hazardous materials or oil release through training and contingency planning. It also provides information on what to do, who to call and responsibilities of those people working with large quantities of hazardous materials if there is a release.
  • There are 21 locations that store large quantities of single chemicals on the University Park campus that are covered by the plan and a separate plan for each non-University Park campus.
fire safety
Fire Safety
  • Utilize Fire Prevention Measures at all times
  • If a fire occurs:
    • FIRST!! Pull fire alarm or Call 911
    • Evacuate the building if you are not trained in fire extinguisher use or are unable to otherwise extinguish the fire.
    • Report all fires no matter how minor
  • Know locations and types of fire extinguishers!
    • Class ABC - normal combustibles, flammable liquids, electrical fires
    • Class D - Combustible metals
fire safety1
Fire Safety ….

Fire Extinguisher Training

  • Free to PSU Employees
  • $ cost for refilling fire extinguisher
  • On-Site “How To” demos


Steve Triebold 814-865-6391

working safely with chemicals5
Working Safely With Chemicals
  • Chemical Safety Concepts
  • Safe Use and Storage
  • Disposal of Chemicals
  • Emergencies
  • Radiation Safety
radiation safety
Radiation Safety
  • Radioactive material may only be used in rooms posted with Caution signs
  • No food or drinks allowed in posted rooms
  • PIs must have University Isotopes Committee approval prior to use
  • Persons working with radioactive material or x-rays must have additional EHS training
radiation safety1
Radiation Safety
  • Do not handle items labeled as radioactive or move containers labeled as containing radioactive material without proper training
  • Security Requirements:
    • Do not let people in whom you don’t know
    • If you go through a locked door, lock it behind you
safety department contacts
Safety Department Contacts ….

Director: Maurine Claver

Chemical Safety

Kate Lumley-Sapanski, Manager Environmental Protection & Health

Kevin Myers, Hazardous Materials Program Manager

Nate Black, Environmental Health and Safety Specialist

Les Gordon, Special Waste Technician

Radiation Safety

Eric Boeldt, Manager Radiation Protection

Mark Linsley, Assoc. Radiation Safety Officer

Dave Bertocchi, Health Physicists

Greg Herman, Health Physicists

James Wiggins, Health Physicist Specialist

Suzanne Morlang, Health Physicist Assistant

safety department contacts1
Safety Department Contacts ….

Biological SafetyOccupational Safety

Curt Speaker - Biosafety OfficerSteve Triebold - Fire Protection Engineer

Environmental ProtectionBill Dreibelbis - Industrial Hygienist Lysa Holland - Compliance Engineer

Asbestos / Lead Abatement

Mike Burke - Industrial Hygienist