There is well-established laboratory health and safety standards to that regulate labs and other research areas. LSS conducts routine inspections in all research areas of the faculty to check if these regulations are applied.
Research areas are strongly encouraged to conduct their own self-inspections prior to LSS conducting an inspection of their research area to address any potential issues before the LSS inspection and to provide a training opportunity for researchers.
The main purpose of these inspections is to help Responsible Faculty Members and LS identify potential regulatory compliances or other problems that may affect lab users health and safety. This way, potential risks of health and safety hazards are also identified and unreasonable risks to both lab users and the rest of campus community are prevented. It is LSS’ responsibility to schedule such inspections.
Inspection checklist followed by LSS is provided in Appendix 5.3.
Self-inspection system helps create a safety culture within the lab. It is an important part of lab safety regulations. It provides several benefits including:
- Raising the level of awareness of laboratory users.
- Determining the level of compliance with state and federal regulations.
- Identifying and eliminating potential risks prior to an official inspection carried out by government officials.
- Enabling lab specific training by identifying potential risks. Train the other lab users on these risks.
- Serving as a regular health and safety check of laboratory facilities.
- Serving as an outlet for Faculty, staff, and student concerns.
A self-inspection is recommended in following periods:
- On a daily basis in terms of housekeeping
- On a weekly basis by walk-throughs or collective clean-ups
- The ideal period for self-inspection is once in a month. For monthly inspection, an inspection checklist may be used. It is also recommended to ask Responsible Faculty Member or other researchers to join your monthly self-inspection.
- LSS is required in self-inspections at least once per semester. LSS utilizes her/his own inspection checklist.
There are multitude of benefits of regular self-inspection in terms of lab user’s health and safety. In addition to that, these inspections may also reduce legal liabilities since it is another chance to identify potential risks in the lab.
Inspections by Regulatory Agencies
These inspections can occur any time. In order to be prepared for official inspections, it is important to understand what regulations apply to laboratories. This handbook helps you to understand and apply these regulations in your laboratory. You can call LSS for any further information.
If inspector shows up in your work area unescorted, ask them to please wait and contact LSS immediately.