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Revisit Manuals

When facilities are established, safety manuals need to be put into place. Customization of the initial manuals can be challenging when the full scope of lab operations is not completely certain.  As work evolves and work practices become firmly established, updates to the manuals may be necessary.

Waste handling practices, safe work practices, safety equipment locations, and just about any other content may need to be updated over time.  As job safety analyses and risk assessments are conducted, SOPs may need to be added as appendices to the corresponding manual.  As safety officers change with time, the contact information and responsibilities need to be updated.  Ensure your manuals are living documents, and not just quickly reviewed every couple years.  At a minimum, a thorough review of each manual should be conducted on an annual basis.  Various regulations also stipulate that manuals need to be updated if the established procedures are found to be deficient in an emergency situation.

Take the time to thoroughly review your manuals, and update the contents as necessary.  Be sure that the established procedures and work practices are accurately reflected in the corresponding manual.  Inspectors will review your manuals in the event of an unannounced regulatory inspection, and hold the company to the contents.  So be sure whatever is in practice is in your documentation.

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