Stanford University

Chemical Hygiene Plan


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  1. 1 Purpose, Scope, and Responsibilities
    View all 4 sections for Purpose, Scope, and Responsibilities
    1. 1.1 Purpose
    2. 1.2 Scope
    3. 1.3 Exclusions
    4. 1.4 Responsibilities
  2. 2 General Classes of Hazardous Chemicals

    Chemicals have inherent physical, chemical and toxicological properties that require laboratory personnel to have a good understanding of the related health and safety hazards. The main types of chemical hazards that lab personnel should be aware of are:

    • Flammability
    • Corrosivity
    • Reactivity/Instability (incl. explosivity), and
    • Toxicity (incl. irritation, sensitization, carcinogenicity, reproductive toxicity)

    Additionally, compressed gases and cryogenic liquids are often used laboratory materials that present unique hazards. Below is a brief discussion of these major classes of hazardous chemicals. Refer to the glossary for specific definitions of each hazard class.

    View all 10 sections for General Classes of Hazardous Chemicals
    1. 2.1 Flammable and Combustible Liquids
    2. 2.2 Corrosive Materials
    3. 2.3 Highly Reactive and Unstable Materials
    4. 2.4 Compressed Gases, Cryogenic Liquids, and Toxic Gases
    5. 2.5 CAL/OSHA “Particularly Hazardous Substances”
    6. 2.6 Sensitizers
    7. 2.7 Irritants
    8. 2.8 Restricted Chemicals
    9. 2.9 Nanomaterials
    10. 2.10 Select Agent Toxins
  3. 3 Minimizing Exposures to Hazardous Chemicals

    For the general safety of laboratory personnel, all chemical usage must be conducted in adherence with the general safe laboratory practices below. The methods used to specifically control chemical exposures are categorized as follows: Engineering Controls, Administrative Controls, and Personal Protective Equipment.

    View all 4 sections for Minimizing Exposures to Hazardous Chemicals
    1. 3.1 Engineering Controls
    2. 3.2 Administrative Controls
    3. 3.3 Personal Protective Equipment
    4. 3.4 Additional Provisions for Work Involving Particularly Hazardous Substances
  4. 4 Standard Operating Procedures

    Priority for SOP development should be given to any operation involving Restricted Chemicals, certain higher hazard chemicals such as Particularly Hazardous Substances and Highly Reactive Chemicals, and specified higher risk research procedures described in Section 5.3. Refer to the Standard Operating Procedure section for guidance on creating SOPs.


    View all 1 sections for Standard Operating Procedures
    1. 4.1 SOP Development
  5. 5 Prior Approval and Special Precautions
    View all 3 sections for Prior Approval and Special Precautions
    1. 5.1 Restricted Chemicals Requiring Prior Approval
    2. 5.2 Methods for Granting Prior Approval
    3. 5.3 Special Precautions for Other Higher Hazard Chemicals and Operations
  6. 6 Chemical Exposure Assessment

    Consistent adherence to general safe laboratory practices in conjunction with appropriate use of exposure controls are expected to keep laboratory chemical exposures to a safe level. Exposure risk is more likely to increase when handling hazardous chemicals outside of a lab hood, especially those chemicals that:

    • Have a high degree of acute toxicity, are carcinogens, or are reproductive toxins, except where there is very low risk of exposure (e.g., use of minimal quantities in a closed system).
    • Have a permissible exposure limit of less than 50 ppm (or 0.25 mg/mfor particulate matter).
    • Are appreciably volatile or are easily dispersible in air (e.g., fine powders).
    • Are used in large volumes (e.g., greater than 1 liter).

    For any concern involving hazardous chemicals usage, including the above scenarios, EH&S’ Occupational Health & Safety Program can provide chemical exposure assessment to help verify adequate controls. For more information, contact EH&S at 723-0448.

    View all 1 sections for Chemical Exposure Assessment
    1. 6.1 Personal Exposure Monitoring
  7. 7 Chemical Labeling, Storage, and Inventory

    Hazardous chemicals must be stored, labeled, and inventoried properly to avoid confusion or mistaken identity of a chemical, to provide separation of incompatible materials, and to provide information for emergency response personnel.

    View all 2 sections for Chemical Labeling, Storage, and Inventory
    1. 7.1 Labeling and Storage
    2. 7.2 Chemical Inventory
  8. 8 Laboratory Inspections

    Laboratory inspections are an essential function to identify and address potential health and safety deficiencies and to fulfill regulatory compliance requirements.

    View all 2 sections for Laboratory Inspections
    1. 8.1 Laboratory Self-Inspection Requirements
    2. 8.2 EH&S Laboratory Quality Assurance Visits
  9. 9 Hazardous Waste Management

    Management of hazardous waste is both a critical compliance and health & safety responsibility of the lab.

    • Refer to the Waste Disposal topic for guidance on general waste management practices, segregation of waste, accumulation and storage of waste, labeling of waste, and requesting removal of waste.
    • For compliance with the training and information requirements for hazardous waste regulations, all laboratory personnel are required to know the following:
      • The hazards of the waste chemicals in the lab.
      • How to properly contain and store the waste in the lab.
      • What to do in an emergency involving the lab waste.
  10. 10 Chemical Hazard Information and Training

    To apprise laboratory personnel of the hazards of chemicals present in their work area, information and training must be made available.

    View all 3 sections for Chemical Hazard Information and Training
    1. 10.1 Hazard Information
    2. 10.2 Work Directed by PI / Laboratory Supervisor
    3. 10.3 Work Conducted Autonomousl y or Independently
  11. 11 Emergency Response - Spills and Exposures

    All incidents involving hazardous chemical spills and exposures require prompt action by the responders and the victims in order to control chemical exposures to personnel and to minimize impacts to the environment and property.

    View all 4 sections for Emergency Response - Spills and Exposures
    1. 11.1 Stanford University Life Safety Boxes
    2. 11.2 Types of Emergency Scenarios
    3. 11.3 Incident Reporting
    4. 11.4 Follow-up
  12. 12 Medical Consultation, Examination and Surveillance

    Medical consultation, examination, and surveillance are provided as follows:

    View all 4 sections for Medical Consultation, Examination and Surveillance
    1. 12.1 When Provided
    2. 12.2 Health Care Providers
    3. 12.3 Information Provided to Physician
    4. 12.4 Recordkeeping of Medical Records / Access to Medical Records
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