Hi Kyle - We are actually in the middle of this right now. I am trying to come up with a quick response plan (QRP) to post in the labs. It is mainly based on definitions from our institution and the ASC guide on spill response.
It is not finished, but I would be happy to send it to you to show our current thinking (can't attach it over the listserve). Just send me an email. One of our main concerns is that the spills get reported ASAP and avoiding foot traffic through a spill in a common area.
I suggest that you take a look at the ACS guide.
“Guide for Chemical Spill Response Planning in Laboratories”
The Risk Management Committee at my college is revamping our "Emergency Protocol Guide" for campus. Regarding chemical spills, they have asked me what should be on the chart when there is a chemical spill.
One member suggested that when a large spill occurs, the person should pull the fire alarm. Even for a pretty nasty spill, I am uncomfortable with that recommendation. I am worried that
- the fire department will be summoned for moderate-large spills of innocuous chemicals
- the FD will come for very small spills of hazardous chemicals, when the actual danger is pretty low
As a relatively new CHO, it seems to me that for chemical spills, the protocol would be to have a person call the FD if a chemistry professor determines that it is necessary.
In my teaching career, we have only had one nasty spill (boiling nitric acid spilled out of the hood and everyone started choking), which we mitigated by evacuating the lab and waiting until the lab ventilation system cleaned most of it out. Then we went in and mopped it up with bicarbonate.
I am interested in your thoughts, advice or experiences.
Associate Professor of Chemistry
1601 N. Benton Ave.
Helena, MT 59625-0002
Previous post | Top of Page | Next post