Chemical Safety FAQs

OSHA’s laboratory safety and hazard communication standards require the employer to implement exposure control programs and convey chemical health and safety information to employees working with hazardous materials.

Therefore, any person working with chemicals must attend chemical safety training.

Only small volume containers of non-hazardous chemicals should be stored on elevated shelves. These include dry powders as well as aqueous solutions of buffers, salts and other dilute materials.

Stock containers of flammable and corrosive chemicals should always be separated from each other and stored at or below eye level. Use a flammable storable cabinet for flammable liquids and keep corrosive chemicals in secondary containers such as a plastic tray.

No. Chemicals need to be separated based on their hazard class. Sometimes this can be achieved by the use of secondary containers such as plastic trays. Please contact your Safety Advisor for assistance.

No. Toxic and other hazardous volatile chemicals should always be handled and manipulated inside a chemical fume hood.

Yes. There are limits on flammable chemicals, toxic and flammable gas cylinders and other high-hazard chemicals, as described in the Laboratory Chemical Hygiene Plan. EHS recommends only keeping the chemicals you need on hand in your laboratory.

Safety Data Sheets (SDS’s) may be obtained from the manufacturer or distributor of a chemical, through the ChemWatch-Safety Data Sheet Repository or by calling EHS at 203-785-3550. Click here for more information on Safety Data Sheets.

Triple rinse containers that are empty and deface the label. Glass bottles should then be placed in a plastic bag and put into any cardboard box. The box should be sealed and the words “broken glass” written on the top. It can then be placed with your normal trash for removal by custodial services. Any container that once held P-listed or acutely hazardous chemicals must be tagged as hazardous waste and cannot be triple rinsed.

All biological and chemical waste tags can be found in either the SHM, KBT or West Campus Resource Center stockrooms. All radioactive waste requests are submitted through EHS Integrator. When you submit a request, the system automatically generates a completed waste tag to attach to waste containers.

Yes. Visit the Eli Surplus Exchange portal and browse the current list of chemicals available free of charge or upload your chemical information and picture directly to the site.