Chemicals and/or hazardous materials play an important and essential role in both research and teaching operations at the University of Texas at Dallas. The Chemical Safety Program establishes policies, procedures, and training for the safe acquisition, use, storage, and disposal of chemicals and hazardous materials on campus. The Chemical Safety Program provides information useful in the recognition, evaluation, and control of workplace hazards and environmental factors existing within and/or associated with the laboratories of the University.
Chemical safety depends on the use of safe practices, appropriate engineering controls, personal protective equipment, a minimum quantity of hazardous material, and/or substitution of less hazardous chemicals. The hazardous properties of the material and/or chemical, as well as its intended use, will dictate the precautions to be taken.
The Chemical Safety Program is further supported by the Institutional Biosafety and Chemical Safety Committee (IBCC) which assists in developing guidelines and polices for the safe handling and use of chemicals and/or hazardous materials by all laboratory personnel.
Classes of Hazardous Chemicals
Chemicals can be divided into several hazard classes. The hazard class will determine how these materials should be stored and handled, as well as what special equipment and procedures are needed to use them safely. The fundamental classes of hazardous chemicals are:
- Reactives (Water Reactive, Pyrophorics, Peroxide Forming Chemicals, etc.)
- Health (Irritants, Sensitizers, Toxins, etc.)
- Compressed Gases
It is important to note that chemicals may be characterized by more than one or a combination of several hazard classes. For additional information regarding the safe use and handling of chemicals, please reference the University’s Chemical Hygiene Plan (CHP) and/or the the chemical’s Safety Data Sheet (SDS).
All training courses are accessible through the Laboratory Management System (BioRAFT). A NetID and registration with a UTD research laboratory is required for access. If you are visiting a campus lab or do not have a NetID, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for a temporary account.
|Laboratory Safety Orientation||Required for individuals exposed to chemical, biological or environmental hazards in a laboratory||Classroom/ Online|
|Chemical Hygiene||Required for individuals who will work with hazardous chemicals||Online|
|Hazardous Waste Management||Required for individuals who will work with or dispose of hazardous wastes||Online|
|Controlled Substances||Required for individuals who will work with DEA controlled substances||Online|
What is Chemical Hygiene?
Hygiene is a set of conditions or practices performed to maintain health and prevent the spread of disease, generally with an emphasis on cleanliness. Thus, chemical hygiene is the set of conditions or practices performed to minimize exposure to harmful chemicals, whether to a person, facility or community.
What is a Chemical Hygiene Plan?
A Chemical Hygiene Plan (CHP) is a written program that provides information useful in the recognition, evaluation, and control of workplace hazards and environmental factors existing within and/or associated with the laboratories of the University. OSHA’s standard on Occupational Exposure to Hazardous Chemicals in Laboratories (29 CFR 1910.1450) specifies the following mandatory requirements of a CHP:
- Standard operating procedures (SOPs) describing the safe use of hazardous chemicals;
- Criteria for the recognition and implementation of control measures to reduce exposure to hazardous materials;
- Methods to maintain properly functioning fume hoods/protective equipment;
- Methods for dissemination of training and information;
- Criteria for prior approval;
- Opportunity for medical consultation and examination;
- Designation of person(s) responsible for implementation; and
- Additional protective measures for those working with particularly hazardous substances (PHS).
When is a Chemical Hygiene Plan required?
A Chemical Hygiene Plan is required by OSHA for laboratories working with hazardous chemicals on a “laboratory scale” (small quantities and not part of a production process).
Chemical Hygiene Resources:
- Safety in Academic Chemistry Laboratories
- Hazard Assessment in Research Laboratories
- Identifying and Evaluating Hazards in Research Laboratories
- Prudent Practices in the Laboratory
- OSHA FactSheet – Laboratory Safety Chemical Hygiene Plan (CHP)
Emily Jackson, Ph.D.,