UCR Policies and Procedures

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Campus Policy Number: 425-12

Chemical Hygiene/Lab Safety

Policy Owner: Environmental Health & Safety
Effective Date:1/15/94

    1. Title 8, California Code of Regulations, Section 5191
    2. UCR Policy on Environmental Health and Safety Responsibilities and Services

  3. On April 24, 1990, Cal/OSHA published the final rule for "Occupational Exposures to Hazardous Chemicals in Laboratories." This standard is designed to protect personnel from intermittent exposure to a broad range of chemicals encountered in laboratory environments.

    The performance-oriented laboratory standard calls for departments to establish and implement a Chemical Hygiene Plan (CHP). The CHP must include practices, procedures, and policies. These must be followed by researchers in laboratories to protect staff, faculty, students and visitors from all potentially hazardous chemicals in the laboratory environment.

    1. Where hazardous chemicals are used in campus laboratories, the departments shall develop and carry out the provisions of a chemical hygiene plan which is:
      1. Capable of protecting individuals from health hazards associated with hazardous chemicals in that laboratory and;
      2. Capable of keeping the exposures below the action level or PEL.

    2. The Chemical Hygiene Plan must be readily accessible to laboratory personnel.
    3. The Chemical Hygiene Plan shall include each of the following elements and shall indicate specific measures the principal investigators/faculty will take to ensure protection of individuals in laboratories:
      1. Standard operating procedures relevant to safety and health
      2. Criteria that will be used to determine and implement control measures to reduce exposure of individuals to hazardous chemicals
      3. A requirement that fume hoods and other protective equipment are functioning properly and methods to be taken to ensure proper and adequate performance
      4. Provisions for personnel training and dissemination of information
      5. Circumstances under which a particular laboratory operation, procedure, or activity shall require prior approval.
      6. Provisions for medical consultation and examination
      7. Designation of personnel responsible for implementation of the Chemical Hygiene Plan.
      8. Provisions for additional protection for lab personnel working with particularly hazardous substances including:
        1. Select carcinogens
        2. Reproductive toxins
        3. Substances with high degree of acute toxicity

      9. When working with particularly hazardous substances, specific consideration shall be given to the following provisions which shall be included where appropriate:
        1. Establishment of a designated area
        2. Use of containment devices such as fume hoods or glove boxes
        3. Procedures for safe removal of contaminated waste; and
        4. Decontamination procedures.

    4. EH&S has developed a Campus Chemical Hygiene Plan which has been approved, is on file in the Executive Vice Chancellor's office, and which will serve as the minimum standard for departmental plans.
    5. The Environmental Health and Safety Office has assisted departments in development of their CHPs, will supply modifications as necessary, and work with the departmental Chemical Hygiene Officers through the Chemical Hygiene Officers Committee to provide assistance as needed (see Policy 425-48).
    6. In cases where a department has deemed it more appropriate for individual laboratories or small groups of laboratories to develop more specific Chemical Hygiene Plan(s), EH&S has and will provide technical assistance in the development of these plans.