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Science Safety

Back to Appendices Index

Appendix D

Safety Checklist
Laboratory Safety Checklist
Carcinogens and Mutagens Checklist

Explosives Checklist

Home Safety Checklist

Safety Checklists

The following checklists are intended to help school and division/district staff ensure a safe environment in the science areas of the school. The laboratory safety checklist is to be completed by each science teacher annually as part of an overall safety program. The lists of carcinogens, mutagens, and explosives are used to identify potential hazards for immediate removal. The home safety list is designed to promote safe attitudes and safety consciousness, particularly in Early and Middle Years students.

Appendix D includes other sections on lab safety, carcinogens, mutagens, explosives, and home safety.

Please note that these checklists are neither comprehensive nor prescriptive. They should be reviewed and modified to suit local situations.

1. Laboratory Safety Checklist

Please place a check mark in the appropriate column. Under the date column, indicate the date of last maintenance if one is

I. Location   Date of Report  
School _______________________ Address _______________________
Room number _______________________ Type of facility _______________________
Person making report _______________________ Title _______________________
    Report submitted to _______________________

available. Base your answers on current practice. "No" answers suggest a potential problem.

 

II. Communication System Yes/Date No N/A
A. Phone      
1. Accessible phone located nearby ______ ______ ______
2. Current emergency phone numbers posted ______ ______ ______
B. Intercom system ______ ______ ______
C. Cooperative plan with nearby colleague ______ ______ ______

 

III. Safety Instruction Yes/Date No N/A
A. Safety pretest for students used to plan instruction ______ ______ ______
B. Safety rules posted (copy provided to each student) ______ ______ ______
C. Safety posters displayed in rooms ______ ______ ______
D. Appropriate warning signs posted (hazardous material) ______ ______ ______
E. Safety contract between teacher and student/parent signed and on
file
______ ______ ______
F. Safety included as part of each pre-lab instruction ______ ______ ______
G. Safety procedures documented in the teacher's lesson plans ______ ______ ______
H. Appropriate facilities provided for students with special needs ______ ______ ______
I. Safer chemicals substituted in lab activities when possible ______ ______ ______
J. Hot plates or microwave ovens substituted for open flames when
possible
______ ______ ______
K. Students instructed in proper handling of glass tubing ______ ______ ______
L. Students instructed on biohazards in animal handling ______ ______ ______
M. School board policy guide made available with safety
instruction for field trips
______ ______ ______

 

IV. Master Cut-offs Yes/Date No N/A
A. Master control cut-off valve available, location known and accessible to teachers, administrators and custodians      
1. Gas ______ ______ ______
2. Electricity ______ ______ ______
3. Water ______ ______ ______
B. Master control cut-off clearly labelled      
1. Gas ______ ______ ______
2. Electricity ______ ______ ______
3. Water ______ ______ ______
C. Gas valves inspected for closure at end of each day ______ ______ ______
D. Gas cut off with master control when not in use ______ ______ ______

 

V. Fire Control Yes/Date No N/A
A. Combination ABC dry chemical fire extinguisher      
1. Suitable size, easily handled ______ ______ ______
2. Evidence of quarterly check ______ ______ ______
3. Safety seal intact ______ ______ ______
4. Easily visible location and unobstructed from view ______ ______ ______
5. Located near escape route of lab ______ ______ ______
6. Access to a 2nd fire extinguisher ______ ______ ______
7. Clean CO2 extinguisher available in areas where dust sensitive
equipment used or stored (e.g., microcomputer, electronic balance,
microscope)
______ ______ ______
8. Teacher trained in use of fire extinguisher through actual fire
situations
______ ______ ______
9. Teacher trained within the last year ______ ______ ______
10. Alternate plan if extinguisher malfunctions ______ ______ ______
B. Presence of 4.5 9L container of clean, dry sand for class D fires
(flammable solids [ i.e., sodium, potassium]) in each
     
1. Earth Science/Geology room ______ ______ ______
2. Biology room ______ ______ ______
3. Chemistry room ______ ______ ______
4. Physics room ______ ______ ______
5. Storeroom ______ ______ ______
6. Any area where chemicals are stored or used ______ ______ ______
7. Teacher has knowledge of when and how to use ______ ______ ______
C. Presence of a fire blanket      
1. Standard fire proof woolen blanket in every lab and storeroom ______ ______ ______
2. Visible location that is known to teacher and students ______ ______ ______
3. Last inspection for rips and holes (Please indicate date) ______ ______ ______
4. Stored near eye-level ______ ______ ______
D. Fire exits and drills      
1. Two fire exits in each laboratory ______ ______ ______
2. Two fire exits in each storeroom/prep room ______ ______ ______
3. Unobstructed and unlocked fire exits ______ ______ ______
4. Labelled and functioning doors on exits ______ ______ ______
5. Posted and practised fire drill procedures ______ ______ ______
6. Functioning general alarm system for entire building ______ ______ ______
E. Smoke Alarm      
1. Presence of smoke alarm in each laboratory ______ ______ ______
2. Presence of smoke alarm in each storeroom ______ ______ ______
3. Indication of regular maintenance (indicate date of most recent
maintenance)
______ ______ ______
F. Automatic sprinkler system last inspected ______ ______ ______
G. No smoking rule in lab and preparation areas ______ ______ ______

 

VI. Availability of First Aid Yes/Date No N/A
A. School nurse available ______ ______ ______
B. Separate kit for chemical first aid ______ ______ ______
C. First-aid kit in each laboratory and storeroom/prep room ______ ______ ______
D. Date of last inspection and restocking of kit less than six months ______ ______ ______
E. First-aid kit easily visible ______ ______ ______
F. First-aid kit accompanied by first-aid poster ______ ______ ______
G. Teacher trained in CPR within recent years ______ ______ ______
H. Teacher trained in first aid within recent years ______ ______ ______
I. Established first-aid policy (e.g., protect; treat only major injuries) ______ ______ ______

 

VII. Ventilation Yes/Date No N/A
A. Forced ventilation capability in each laboratory with manual control ______ ______ ______
B. Continuous ventilation in storeroom ______ ______ ______
C. Exhaust (on roof) ventilated away from air intake ______ ______ ______
D. Fume hood      
1. Ventilation to roof (away from intake) ______ ______ ______
2. Not used as a storage area ______ ______ ______
3. In every chemistry laboratory for use with hazardous, vaporous
chemicals
______ ______ ______
4. Evidence of maintenance (for exhaust rate and leakage); please
indicate most recent date
______ ______ ______
5. Provides minimum of air movement at hood face with sash open
(as per standards and codes)
______ ______ ______

 

VIII. Lighting Yes/Date No N/A
A. Safe light level in laboratory ______ ______ ______
B. Emergency light      
1. In each laboratory (possibly not necessary if adequate natural light
is available)
______ ______ ______
2. Located in each storeroom/prep room ______ ______ ______
3. Evidence of regular maintenance (Please indicate date) ______ ______ ______

 

IX. Personal Protection Yes/Date No N/A
A. Emergency shower (deluge or hand-held, telephone-style
depending on MSDS and quantities of chemicals used)
     
1. One in each laboratory/classroom ______ ______ ______
2. Functional (with water turned on) unobstructed shower and valve
handle
______ ______ ______
3. Plainly labelled ______ ______ ______
B. Eye Wash      
1. Available in each laboratory ______ ______ ______
2. Training in eye wash procedures within last year (Please indicate
date)
______ ______ ______
3. Equipment to treat both eyes simultaneously with instant, gentle,
tempered flow of aerated water for 10-15 minutes
______ ______ ______
4. Clearly marked ______ ______ ______
C. Protective Clothing      
1. Presence of aprons ______ ______ ______
2. Presence of gloves      
a) heat resistant gloves ______ ______ ______
b) chemical resistant gloves for student use ______ ______ ______
3. Presence of safety goggles for each student when needed ______ ______ ______
4. System for disinfecting goggles ______ ______ ______
5. Presence of face shields ______ ______ ______
6. Standard procedures for use of protective gear are enforced ______ ______ ______
D. Carriers available for carrying chemicals and acids ______ ______ ______
E. Belt guards on all belt driven equipment (e.g., rock saw) ______ ______ ______

 

X. Storage Yes/Date No N/A
A. Chemicals      
1. Regular inventory and disposal of unused hazardous chemicals ______ ______ ______
2. Chemicals not stored in areas regularly traveled by students ______ ______ ______
3. Correctly labelled when transferred from original container ______ ______ ______
4. Quantity of chemicals stored not excessive (1 or 2 semester supply) ______ ______ ______
5. Fully and properly labelled with      
a) secure, waterproof labels ______ ______ ______
b) date of acquisition ______ ______ ______
c) hazard alert ______ ______ ______
d) name of supplier ______ ______ ______
e) chemical's strength or purity ______ ______ ______
6. Stored in compatible chemical families (not alphabetical or other
unsafe methods)
______ ______ ______
7. Acids stored separately in non-metal, vented cabinets ______ ______ ______
8. Flammables in dedicated and approved vented cabinet ______ ______ ______
9. Stored in a regulated area with entry allowed only for authorized
personnel
______ ______ ______
10. Inside of storage rooms is sufficiently fire resistant ______ ______ ______
B. Cabinets      
1. Secured to floor and/or wall ______ ______ ______
2. Presence of lockable cabinets ______ ______ ______
3. The following items are stored in locked cabinets      
a) hypodermic syringes ______ ______ ______
b) drugs ______ ______ ______
c) dangerous chemicals ______ ______ ______
4. Presence of lab refrigerator (biology) ______ ______ ______
C. Shelves      
1. Equipped with lip edge to prevent bottle roll-off ______ ______ ______
2. Portable shelves secured to wall or ceiling ______ ______ ______
3. Chemicals stored at or below eye level ______ ______ ______
4. Glass cylinders stored off the floor ______ ______ ______
5. Chemicals stored off the floor ______ ______ ______
6. Storage of tall items at back of shelf and heavy glassware on
lower shelves, no chemical containers stacked double
______ ______ ______
7. Glass rods and tubing stored horizontally with no pieces
protruding over edge
______ ______ ______
D. Gas Cylinders      
1. Capped ______ ______ ______
2. Supported to prevent rolling or tipping ______ ______ ______
3. Placed away from heat sources and open flames ______ ______ ______
4. Clamped tightly in place after being positioned for use ______ ______ ______

 

XI. General Storeroom or Lab Safety Yes/Date No N/A
A. Centrifuges      
1. Anchored securely ______ ______ ______
2. Instructions labelled ______ ______ ______
3. Positive locking head ______ ______ ______
4. Top equipped with disconnect switch that shuts off if top is
inadvertently opened
______ ______ ______
B. Electrical      
1. Outlets carry grounding connections (GFCI recommended) ______ ______ ______
2. Sufficient electrical outlets provided so as to eliminate the use
of extension cords or overlapping wires or multiple plugs
______ ______ ______
3. No outlets close to faucets ______ ______ ______
4. All major lines fused or on circuit breakers ______ ______ ______
5. Location of circuit breakers known to teachers, custodians, and
administrators
______ ______ ______
6. Date of last inspection ______ ______ ______
7. Floor plugs securely fastened ______ ______ ______
8. Recessed floor plugs waterproof ______ ______ ______
9. Extension cords 18-gauge or heavier ______ ______ ______
10. No extension cords across aisles ______ ______ ______
11. DC and AC lines clearly labelled ______ ______ ______
C. Preparation/Workroom      
1. Large sink ______ ______ ______
2. Hot water ______ ______ ______
3. Emergency shower deluge or hand-held telephone style
(one in preparation area or adjoining classroom) Type is dependent
on needs (i.e., MSDS and quantities of chemicals used).
______ ______ ______
4. Posted rules for safe handling, clean-up, disposal, protective
equipment, conduct
______ ______ ______
D. Presence      
1. Bulb (not mouth) pipettes ______ ______ ______
2. Fan guards ______ ______ ______
3. Materials Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) for each hazardous
chemical present
______ ______ ______
4. Automatic request for MSDS on all purchase orders ______ ______ ______
5. Aisles wide enough so teachers and students can move freely
without interfering with others (no books and coats on floor)
______ ______ ______
6. Work surfaces made of non-porous and chemical resistant
materials
______ ______ ______
7. Chemical waste container(s) non-reactive available ______ ______ ______
E. Clean-up materials for chemical spills      
1. Chemical spill kit available ______ ______ ______
2. Spill pillows available ______ ______ ______
3. Protective clothing available ______ ______ ______
4. Approved waste disposal practised ______ ______ ______
F. Presence of laboratory chemical wastes disposal system for      
1. Glass ______ ______ ______
2. Dry chemicals/reagents ______ ______ ______
3. Liquid chemicals/reagents ______ ______ ______
G. Devoid of pathogenic bacteria ______ ______ ______
H. Annual safety inspection ______ ______ ______
I. Chemicals in original containers not available for student use ______ ______ ______
J. Caution (Do Not Eat) sign on icemaker ______ ______ ______

 

XII. Housekeeping Yes/Date No N/A
A. Labs, storage, and prep rooms are clean and organized ______ ______ ______
B. Aisles are clear ______ ______ ______
C. Supplies and equipment (cleaned) are returned to proper storage area ______ ______ ______
D. Work surfaces are clear and clean ______ ______ ______

 

XIII. Recommendations      
       
Teacher's signature ________________________________ Date __________________
(Initial all pages)      
Administrator's signature ________________________________ Date __________________

 

2. Carcinogens and Mutagens Checklist

CAUTION: This is not a comprehensive listing of all chemicals having substantial evidence of carcinogenicity. Further, each substance listed here may have additional health hazards.

These substances are not recommended for use or storage in schools. If present, they should be removed. Additional information on carcinogenic chemicals can be obtained from the Miller Environmental Corporation or the Workplace Safety and Health Branch (Manitoba Labour). Remember --some carcinogens are more potent than others and risk increases with level and duration of exposure.

Removal: These substances should be removed under the direction or supervision of the Miller Environmental Corporation or a licensed commercial company. All provincial, local, and federal regulations must be adhered to in the removal process. Once removed, the substances should not re-enter the school. Instructions should be added to the procedures for ordering chemicals to make sure that, once removed, these chemicals are not reordered.

Table A

Substances Identified as Known or Probable Human Carcinogens
1. Known Carcinogens Chemical Abstracts Services No. Date of Removal
Arsenic powder* 7440-28-2  
Arsenic pentoxide 1303-28-2  
Arsenic trichloride 7784-34-1  
Arsenic trioxide 1327-53-3  
Asbestos 1332-21-4  
Benzene 71-43-2  
Benzidine 92-87-5  
Chromium powder* 7440-47-3  
Chromium (VI) oxide 1333-82-0  
Lead arsenate 7784-40-9  
Sodium arsenate 7631-89-2  
Sodium arsenite 7784-46-5  
2. Probable Carcinogens
Acrylonitrile 107-13-1  
Cadmium powder 7440-43-9  
Cadmium chloride 10108-64-2  
Cadmium sulphate 10124-36-4  
Carbon tetrachloride 56-23-5  
Chloroform 67-66-3  
Ethylene oxide 75-21-8  
Nickel powder 7440-02-0  
o-Toluidine 95-53-4  

 

* Based on the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) classification.

"Known" carcinogens are IARC Group 1; "Probable" carcinogens are IARC Groups 2A and 2B.

Evidence for the Carcinogenicity of these metals is derived from occupational exposure studies. Although it is uncertain whether the metal or a metal compound(s) is responsible, only respirable particulates are thought to be of concern.

 

Table B

Substances Reported as Animal Carcinogens or Mutagens

Animal Carcinogens: Reports on the extent of the hazard to humans are not complete as of the printing of this manual. Substances that are animal carcinogens should be regarded as posing a carcinogenic risk to humans and should be used with appropriate caution.

Mutagens: The extent of the hazard to humans associated with exposure to mutagens is less clear than it is with carcinogens. However, it is recommended that similar caution (to that exercised in the handling of carcinogens) should be exercised in handling substances which are mutagenic.

The substances identified are known animal carcinogens or mutagens.

Animal carcinogens or mutagens
Substance CAS No. Carcinogen Mutagen Date Removed
Acetamide 60-35-5 * *  
Acridine orange 494-38-2   *  
Ammonium chromate 7788-98-9   *  
Ammonium dichromate 7789-09-5   *  
(Ammonium bichromate) 7789-09-5      
Aniline (or any of its salts) 142-04-1 *    
Anthracene 120-12-7   *  
Antimony oxide 4327-33-9   *  
Beryllium carbonate 66104-24-3 * *  
Cobalt powder 7740-48-4   *  
Colchicine 64-86-8   *  
1,2-Dichloroethane (Ethylene dichloride) 107-06-2 * *  
1,4-Dioxane (p-Dioxane) 123-91-1 *    
Formaldehyde* 50-00-0 * *  
Hydroquinone 123-31-9   *  
Indigo carmine 860-22-0   *  
Lead II acetate 301-04-2 * *  
Nickel II acetate 373-02-4 *    
Osmium tetraoxide 20816-12-0   *  
Potassium chromate 7789-00-6   *  
Potassium permanganate 7722-64-7   *  
Pyrogallic acid 87-66-1   *  
Silver nitrate 7761-88-8   *  
Sodiumazide 26628-22-8   *  
Sodium dichromate dihydrate 7789-12-0   *  
Sodium nitrate 7631-99-4   *  
Sodium nitrite 7632-88-3   *  
Thioacetamide 62-55-5 * *  
Toluene 108-88-3   *  
Urethane (Ethyl carbamate) 51-79-6 * *  

 

3. Explosives Checklist

CAUTION: This is not a comprehensive list of all explosive chemicals

The substances in this table should NOT be used in schools. If present in schools, they should be removed. Please note the legislative and regulatory prohibitions (see section 7, page 6). It is illegal to store explosive powder or high explosives in or near schools.

REMOVAL: Explosives should be removed by trained firefighters, police bomb squads, or other qualified officials. Limit movement of containers of such chemicals to minimize the chance of detonation.

List of some explosive chemicals
Substance CAS No. Date of Removal
Benzoyl peroxide 94-36-0  
Carbon disulphide1 75-15-0  
Diisopropyl ether2 108-20-3  
Ethyl ether2 60-29-7  
Picric acid 88-89-1  
Perchloric acid3 7601-90-3  
Potassium metal 7440-09-7  

 

1. The flashpoint of Carbon Disulphide (-30 C) is well below room temperature and small amounts of the vapour in air can be explosive.

2. These chemicals become dangerous upon aging. Ethers and potassium metal can both form explosive peroxides upon exposure to air. Old opened containers of ether should be treated with great caution as should potassium metal not stored under kerosene.

3. Although the 70% acid/water mixture is not explosive, the use of perchloric acid often leads to the formation of perchlorates which are very explosive.

 

4. Home Safety Checklist

One of the goals of science curricula in Manitoba is to promote positive attitudes toward science and science safety. Use of the following checklist with students at all grades may help to promote safety awareness beyond the science classroom.

General

All perfumes, cosmetics, and cleaners should be kept out of reach of small children. Remove flaking paint chips on window sills or woodwork.

Kitchen Yes No
No household products under sink _____ _____
No medicines on counter _____ _____
No medicine on window sill _____ _____
     
Bathroom    
Medicine chest cleaned regularly _____ _____
Old medicines returned to pharmacist or local hospital _____ _____
All medicines in safety containers _____ _____
     
Bedroom    
No medicine on dresser, chest, or bedside table _____ _____
No flaking paint chips on window sills or woodwork _____ _____
No flaking paint chips on crib or playpen _____ _____
     
Laundry    
Soap and detergents up high _____ _____
Furniture and metal polish up high _____ _____
Drain cleaners in safety containers _____ _____
     
Garage    
Bug spray and weed killers up high and labeled _____ _____
No gasoline in containers other than approved safety containers _____ _____
Turpentine and paint thinner in original containers and up high _____ _____

 

Score (Each yes on the above list is worth one point)

16-17 Excellent
13-15 Good ­ But Keep Trying
9-12 Room For Improvement
5-8 Danger Zone
0-5 Asking for Trouble

 


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