From: Janet Baum <baum.janet**At_Symbol_Here**GMAIL.COM>
Subject: Re: [DCHAS-L] Student with dwarfism condition (achondroplasia)
Date: Mon, 13 Aug 2018 11:36:47 -0400
Reply-To: ACS Division of Chemical Health and Safety <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**PRINCETON.EDU>
Message-ID: CAAgNRJiUXdBo0JtAdhpQDa1BWnDrT4p4y1rWJGLe1DNnvC0vBw**At_Symbol_Here**

Dear Margaret, Please go online to ACS Publications for a new book Accessibility in the Laboratory, 2018, editor Ellen Sweet, DCHAS. It has information you need to safely accommodate a student who may not have an adequate reach across the bench to work safely. I do not recommend the student's using a step stool under any circumstance.. A step stool doesn't allow the student to move in any direction without falling off it. That will only be an additional hazard.

Even it the laboratory is old, can the university find a low desk or adjustable low table with a knee opening to place in the laboratory? Locating low bench top near the primary exit and so the student has an unobstructed view of the instructor and chalkboard are essential. In addition, this low bench may need to be located near an electric outlet to power small instruments that the student might use.

An important health and safety issue is there is higher risk of the student inhaling the fumes emitted while manipulating chemicals in open containers, unless the student's face and breathing zone are sufficiently above the bench surface. If the student's breathing zone is at or under the sash opening, such as 8 to 12 inches, risk is high for harmful exposure. This is definitely a hard goal to achieve in a standard height chemical hood. An adjustable high, stable, and comfortable seat might raise the student to a safer height, but on most standard chemical hoods, a solid fascia of 4 to 8 inches is installed beneath the work surface; that makes the knee opening too low to be safe. Without a knee opening directly under the work surface, the student would only be able to sit with legs and feet to one side; this is an unstable, risky posture for working in the chemical hood. The student may be unable to climb up to the seat height without assistance.

Installing a recirculating filtered chemical hood installed on a low table at a height where the student can stand and have protection of his/her breathing zone may be safer, with consideration of the risks from the chemicals routinely used and the capacity of the hood filter to extract those fumes and gases.

Accessibility in the Laboratory is an excellent resource that addresses many other issues that you must become aware of and watch out for each student with physical limitations. Please use this resource to work with this student and make her/his learning experience in a chemistry laboratory a safe and effective. Best wishes for your efforts for this student.

Janet Baum, AIA, DivCHAS
Contributor to Accessibility in the Laboratory, 2018, Chapter 9
Co-Author of Guidelines for Laboratory Design: Health, Safety and Environmental Considerations 4th Edition, 2013

On Mon, Aug 13, 2018 at 10:05 AM, Margaret Rakas <mrakas**At_Symbol_Here**> wrote:
Good morning,

We have a student with achondroplasia who will be working in a biology lab with small amounts of chemicals (typically ethidium bromide, alcohols) and while they may occasionally need to use a fume hood, most of the work will occur on the benchtop (various bench heights, for standing and sitting, not necessarily knee cutouts on all of them).

This condition typically results in a normal-sized trunk but the individual has shortened arms and legs and typically is between 4 ft 1 inch and 4 ft 4 inches.

We will need to get some sort of step stool and plan to involve the student in choosing one that works best for them. Is there a better supplier than Grainger? The lab is older, not necessarily ADA compliant in all sections (I am thinking width between benches) and what I really don't want to suggest is one of the 'industrial" them to be on something that may not be safe..

Also, are there any other issues we need to be on the watch for? I am not sure how much lab experience the student has had...

Many thanks, really appreciate any recommendations from those of you who have dealt with this type of accommodation previously.

Margaret A. Rakas, Ph.D.
Manager, Inventory & Regulatory Affairs
Clark Science Center
413-585-3877 (p)

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