You could have the students use an appropriate tray, absorbent liner, or spill containment under anything they are doing in the hood to help minimize spills getting on them. You can find these at fisher or many other lab safety supply vendors. Also, I tell my students when the weather is warm, they can wear shorts, flip flops etc. to their classes, but they have to bring long pants and appropriate shoes to change into for the lab. I don't allow them in the lab otherwise. We have safety coats but no laundry service (All the coats were bought new this past fall). We replace ones that get too dirty. Also be sure to hang them up so they do not overlay one another. Otherwise the outside of one coat can contaminate the inside of the other. I see this a lot and it is one of my big pet peeves. There is a PhD comic that illustrates it well http://www.phdcomics.com/comics/archive.php?comicid=1363 . Hope some of this helps.
Sheila N. Baker
Department of Chemical Engineering
University of Missouri-Columbia
W2018 Lafferre Hall
Columbia, MO 65211
"My body may be confined to this chair and I may have to speak through a computer, but my mind is free" - Stephen Hawking
From: DCHAS-L Discussion List [mailto:dchas-l**At_Symbol_Here**MED.CORNELL.EDU] On Behalf Of David Roberts
Sent: Wednesday, June 06, 2012 2:26 PM
Subject: [DCHAS-L] lab coat question
Sorry to re-hash old issues. Can somebody please help me in thinking about lab coats as a means of PPE? When places have a lab coat policy - where do you get them washed (what contractors do you hire for this, or what has to be done to generate an in house service)? What kind of costs are we talking about here?
We are a small, undergrad only University. We take safety seriously, but frankly, we don't do a lot of extremely dangerous things. We have
2000 students total, of which we have about 35 or so chemistry majors a year. Of that, about 10 do research, so the numbers are small, and faculty guidance is present. At present, we obviously do not use lab coats because we have not figured out how to launder them. In some labs with infectious agents, we use disposable lab coats (and we properly manage them). But I feel in the synthetic chemistry labs, disposable coats aren't proper (plus, they are not made of the correct material for organic synthesis). Just as a side, we have over 65 fume hoods in our small space. All of the students do everything in hoods - so really the hope is that there is no need to deal with spilling. We teach them to work behind the fume hood glass, which is very effective but not always practical (so there are of course times when they have a potential to have an accident and spill on themselves). We try to take that all out of the equation, and have done a good job thus far, but nothing i!
On a similar note - in the summer months, how do you specify a "minimum"
bit of lab clothing to be worn by people. If you allow shorts - do you specify a minimum length, and with shirts, do you have any specifics on minimum coverage?
All of this is related if you didn't guess. We have students that we want to cover up, and so we are just looking for ways to do this properly.
Thanks for any help
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