Lab Safety and Regulated Research Materials

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It is essential to maintain a safe and secure laboratory work environment.

What is essential?

The PI has the overall responsibility of ensuring that all personnel working under their supervision have been trained to conduct their work safely and in accordance with federal, state, and local regulations and University safety guidelines.

Similarly, the PI is responsible for ensuring that spaces for which they’re responsible and which they provide to those under their supervision for doing their work are configured and maintained to support safe practices. Each PI should consult the Environmental Health & Safety website for safety and regulatory information, online training modules and university safety programs and guidelines prior to beginning any research on campus.

Why it’s Important

Lehigh University researchers must comply with safety regulations and guidelines developed or adopted by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and other Federal, State and Local governmental agencies such as the Bethlehem Fire Department, EPA, CDC, DEP, etc.

It is the responsibility of the PI to determine which set of safety and regulatory guidelines apply to their area(s) of research. The regulations and guidelines are carefully designed to cultivate a safe work environment for the entire university and surrounding community.

How to Comply

PI’s should develop written laboratory safety and emergency plans which are specific for their area(s) of research. They are also required to maintain an accurate laboratory inventory of gases, chemicals and specimens in their laboratories. In addition, a laboratory layout and emergency phone numbers for lab occupants must be posted on the laboratory door and updated on a periodic basis.

If you are unsure of how to fulfill these responsibilities or have questions, seek help. Environmental Health & Safety is available to assist faculty in determining which safety programs and guidelines apply to their areas of research.