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Steps to Implementing a Respiratory Protection Program

The OSHA regulation 29 CFR 1910.134, Respiratory Protection, mandates requirements for implementing respiratory protection programs.  As best practice, there are steps that should be taken prior to implementation to make the program come full circle.

Peroxide Forming Chemicals

Do you know what chemicals in your inventory have the potential to form dangerous peroxides? Certain classes of compounds are prone to forming peroxides over time, including ethers, halogenated alkenes, vinyl halides, and secondary alcohols. 

Do Safer Companies Outperform Others in the Stock Market? Apparently “Yes”.

We’ve been wondering if safer companies actually outperform others. Dr. Diane Chen of the Harvard School of Public Health pointed us to a fascinating study, “The Link Between Workforce Health and Safety and the Health of the Bottom Line” (Fabius et al, Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Vol. 55, No. 9, September 2013, web). The answer appears to be “yes”.

The Challenges of Food and Drink in Lab Areas

Does your facility struggle with how to keep food and drink out of laboratory areas? Consuming food and drinks in laboratories and storing food in laboratory equipment increase the chance of contamination and accidental ingestion of hazardous materials.

Don’t Forget to Submit Your LLRW Survey!

Low Level Radioactive Waste Surveys. The Massachusetts Department of Public Health Radiation Control Program tracks the generation and disposal of low level radioactive waste produced in Massachusetts every year.

Hazardous Waste Generator Training

Are your generators of hazardous waste trained sufficiently?  Have your certified hazmat employees been trained on RCRA regulations? The Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) was enacted to protect human health and the environment from the hazards of hazardous waste generation and disposal. 

Are Biosafety Levels and Risk Groups the Same?

Many people assume that biosafety levels and biological risk groups are synonymous, when in fact there are many factors to consider when designating a biosafety level for a biological agent. There are four risk group classifications established in the NIH Guidelines  and The World Health Organization’s Laboratory Biosafety Manual. 

Conducting Chemical Inventories

When was the last time a chemical inventory was conducted in your lab?  Do you know what hazardous chemicals are present in your workplace and are you maintaining SDSs for all of them?

Import and Export Permitting Can Be Complicated

Biological materials imported into the US or exported out of the US may be subject to permitting requirements through various agencies, including the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), and US Fish and Wildlife (FWS).