Date: Mon, 7 Dec 2009 23:53:49 -0800
Reply-To: DCHAS-L Discussion List <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**LIST.UVM.EDU>
Sender: DCHAS-L Discussion List <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**LIST.UVM.EDU>
From: Jean & Ken Smith <smith.j.k**At_Symbol_Here**SBCGLOBAL.NET>
Subject: Re: Lab Spill Team
In-Reply-To: <OFB6DDD4D8.4B7DADD9-ON85257685.00614281-85257685.006DE43E**At_Symbol_Here**>
Hi Patricia,
In addition to the other replies, one thing that is very important when
exposed to methylene chloride, the vapor will penetrate most respirator
cartridges very quickly as it is not adsorbed/absorbed well.  A large spill
of 4 L probably would require a SCBA respirator when cleaning.  Also, most
glove materials would be quickly penetrated.  It would be wise to check the
manufacturers for resistant gloves for this purpose and for associated PPE.

The SCBA training must be by a SCBA trainer who has been certified for that
type of respirator.  It is not to be done by someone that has a general
knowledge of most respirators but not specifically for SCBA.  Mishandled
SCBA use can possibly send a person to a hospital very quickly and a morgue
at worst.  

Good luck on finding the proper PPE including respirators for that remote
possibility of a spill.
Ken Smith
Retired CIH and former SCBA user

-----Original Message-----
From: DCHAS-L Discussion List [mailto:DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**] On Behalf Of
Patricia Peifer
Sent: Monday, December 07, 2009 12:00 PM
To: DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**LIST.UVM.EDU
Subject: [DCHAS-L] Lab Spill Team

I work in a small lab (about 65 people) with minimal potential for large
spills.  The largest spill we have had since I have been here is 4 liters
of methylene chloride.  We could have a bigger spill but it is extremely

We have a spill team composed of 5 lab employees (including myself) who get
asked to deal with the bigger spills, such as the 4 L of methylene
chloride.  The spill team has respirators and gets fit tested every year.
We also have a spill training session each year, about 1 hour long.   If we
have a spill that we cannot handle, we have an ourside contractor we plan
on calling.

I have been told I should be having the entire spill team take the 24 hour
HAZWOPER course with an annual refresher.   That will be a hard sell for me
to management unless it is absolutely required.  I do feel that we should
have more than the one hour we typically have, though.  If the 24-hour
HAZWOPER is not absolutely required, I would like to have someone come in
and give us a half-day (at least) of spill training.

So, two questions:

Does anyone know if I have been told the correct information about the need
for the 24 hour HAZWOPER?
Does anyone know of a good person to contact in Eastern Pennsylvania about
spill training?


Pat Peifer
Project Manager, Safety & Training

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