ABC of Safety in the Biological Sciences




Good housekeeping is a healthy attitude of mind to develop in any laboratory and will mean a safer place in which to work. A series of general housekeeping rules include:

  • keep benches clean and uncluttered
  • store liquids in containers below eye level
  • do not obstruct exits and aisles
  • do not block access to fire extinguishers, fire blankets or safety showers
  • clean up any spills immediately irrespective of the nature of the spill
  • regularly check eye wash containers and change the contents. Label with the date that changes are effected
  • regularly check that safety showers are working
  • keep a log book on all equipment maintenance
  • have all electrical equipment checked for safety at least once a year
  • never leave dirty coats lying around
  • label all reagents with the date and name of the person preparing the solution
  • periodically clean and disinfect all refrigerators, freezers, water baths and centrifuges
  • do not store personal belongings in the work area


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