Safety Must-Haves for Any Lab
In order to operate a fully functioning lab properly it’s essential to have the best safety equipment. Not only is it important to keep your employees safe but the equipment should also be a consideration when choosing safety features. In addition to the obvious items like a first aid kit and a fire extinguisher, here are five additional items that are essential for lab safety.
1. Fire Blanket – Interestingly enough, the chemical compound in fire extinguishers may be harmful to different types of lab elements. If so, then an alternative must be considered in the event of a fire. The go-to after the fire extinguisher is a fire blanket which is composed of a fire retardant material that suppresses the blaze immediately.
2. Eye Wash – An eye wash is a specifically designed lab safety sink in which water will move upward to cleanse your eyes. They can be either free-standing sinks that are used solely for eye washing or the fixtures can be incorporated into existing lab sinks. In case of a chemical splash or other injury, the eye wash is an eye saver.
3. Safety Showers – Safety showers are essential to keeping harmful chemicals off of the body. Sometimes the eye wash simply isn’t enough and if a full body or partial body rinse is necessary than a safety shower is a must. And depending on the lab you can choose from a free-standing shower or one that is mounted into the wall to save space.
4. Fume Hood – It’s important to choose the best fume hood for your specific lab. Inhaling dangerous chemicals has the potential to cause major harm on your body if the vapors aren’t ventilated properly. Make sure that you choose the fume hood carefully and specifically for your lab.
5. Electrical Outlets – Many people do not think about these small, out-of-sight installations but they’re a safety concern as well. Different pieces of equipment require different levels of amps and volts, as well as connection prongs. You cannot simply jam a plug into an outlet that it’s not designed for so be sure to choose them wisely otherwise your lab is at much higher risk for a fire.
The main thing to consider when stocking your lab with safety equipment is to understand what type of lab you have. There definitely should be “must have” safety items like fire extinguishers but perhaps your lab needs a safety shower or fire resistant electrical outlets. By understanding your lab’s functions you will be in a strong position to choose the proper safety equipment.