Hazardous Materials

In an Emergency, call 911

Planning and Preparation

Hazardous materials are part of the everyday lives of virtually everyone in the United States. They can be chemical, radiological, biological or gases. Since hazardous materials vary greatly in the type and amount of danger they present, the nature of the specific material involved in a spill or release needs to be taken into consideration during an incident. Because of this, all individuals who may be exposed to hazardous materials in the workplace need to be properly trained about the hazardous materials and know where they can find the Material Safety Data Sheets or similar information on the hazards, along with the specific departmental or laboratory procedures for spills or releases that might occur.

Take Precautions

In order to reduce the danger of a hazardous materials release, there are several steps that can be taken, including:

  • Keep hazardous materials in their original containers
  • Have Material Safety Data Sheets or equivalent information readily available and keep departmental emergency procedures clearly posted
  • Have annual training with all employees regarding hazardous materials present in their work place
  • Make sure any cleaned up hazardous materials are properly disposed through Environmental Health & Safety
  • Never pour chemicals down in a sink- call the Environmental Health & Safety Office for guidance on how to properly dispose of chemicals and other hazardous materials

If you are exposed

If a hazardous materials release occurs or is discovered and in your opinion constitutes an immediate danger to you or other building occupants PULL THE FIRE ALARM to evacuate the building. After activating the fire alarm, immediately call 911. For hazardous materials contact, remove contaminated clothing and rinse contaminated skin or eyes continually with fresh water or eye wash solution for 15 minutes. Any contamination of a person or a release to the environment must be reported to your supervisor and Environmental Health and Safety.