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Remember to Take the Extra Minute

Everyone is busy, especially during a holiday week when busy schedules become even more compacted. We had a very long winter, and everyone I know is more than ready for summer! It is tempting to take short cuts or skip steps in established procedures to save a few minutes.

Have You Reviewed a SDS Lately?

During hazard communication and chemical safety training, the practice of reviewing the SDS for a chemical prior to initiating use of that chemical is discussed. Every person working in the lab knows that they should review SDSs for the chemicals being utilized, but when was the last time that you actually took the time to sit down and read an entire SDS in detail?

What Not to Store in a Flammable Cabinet

One well established safety procedure is to store flammable materials in a proper flammable cabinet. Training sessions, Chemical Hygiene Plans, SOPs, etc. all cover the fact that flammables must be stored appropriately. But have you considered what should not be stored in a flammable cabinet?

EPA Proposed Regulation of Nanoscale Materials

On March 25, 2015, EPA proposed one-time reporting and recordkeeping requirements for chemical substances in the nanoscale range. The reporting requirements for the materials already in commerce would include the chemical identity, production volume, methods of manufacture, processing, use, exposure and release information, and available health and safety data.

Have You Evaluated Compliance With 29 CFR 1910.147

If you are not familiar with 29 CFR 1910.147, this is OSHA’s standard for The Control of Hazardous Energy (lockout/tagout). If employees at your facility conduct any service or maintenance of machines or equipment, the development and implementation of a lockout/tagout program must be evaluated.

Remember to Audit Your Controlled Substance Program

In MA, there are two regulatory agencies that enforce controlled substances, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, Drug Control Program (DCP).  Any facility licensed to store and use controlled substances for research purposes must comply with the applicable regulations and conditions of their license and registration.

Simple Decontamination or Full Decommissioning?

When vacating lab space, it is necessary to determine the level of decontamination or decommissioning necessary far in advance of the exit date. Of course there are many details involved in decontaminating a lab space, but the overall level required is the first question to be answered.

National Safety Stand-Down

Have you heard that May 4-15, 2015 marks the second annual National Safety Stand Down to Prevent Falls in Construction?  OSHA began this awareness campaign due to falls from elevation being the leading cause of death for construction workers.

Hazard Communication Deadline is Rapidly Approaching

The June 15, 2015 effective date for chemical manufacturers, importers, distributors, and employers to be in compliance with the 2012 Hazard Communication Standard is rapidly approaching. There are only two exceptions stipulated in 29 CFR 1910.1200(j)(2)(i) and (ii).

What the BBP Standard Covers, Put Simply

In discussions, I sometimes come across people that are confused about what OSHA’s Bloodborne Pathogen Standard, 29 CFR 1910.1030, actually covers. Put very simply, the BBP standard applies to occupational exposure to human blood or other potentially infectious material as defined in the standard.

Tips for Integrating EHS Into Daily Work

The annual “national day for the environment”, Earth Day, is happening tomorrow, April 22, 2015. I think everyone knows and agrees that environmental awareness should be a part of daily life. Following are some tips for integrating your EHS program into the daily life of employees at your facility.

Remember the Importance of a Comprehensive Post-Exposure Policy

Does your biosafety program include a detailed post-exposure policy that clearly specifies the steps to follow in the event of an exposure incident? The last thing you want to be doing following an incident involving an exposure to potentially infectious material, or material known to be infectious, is figuring out the comprehensive steps to take.