Experience has demonstrated the necessity of maintaining a constant awareness of the hazards attendant to experimental work performed in the study of chemistry. Experience also shows that the best way for a student to protect her/himself and her/his co-workers is to incorporate safety as an integral part of each task and operation.
Those studying chemical engineering, both at the undergraduate and graduate level, are expected to exhibit good judgement based upon their chemical knowledge and upon common sense in preventing hazardous situations. The student is expected to make a careful analysis of each operation for safety. In doing this, he/she collects information pertinent to the job from the literature and her/his associates. On the basis of this information he/she forecasts potential hazards and decides how to circumvent the hazards through the application of safe techniques and the use of protective equipment. Finally, he/she plans a precautionary course of action in the event an accident occurs because of unforeseen factors.
An analysis of many accidents over the years indicates quite clearly that poor house-keeping in the laboratory, poor understanding of the properties of the chemicals used, improper use of tools and equipment, improper selection of clothing, and poor judgement on the part of the student are important contributory factors to laboratory accidents.
To assist you in planning and conducting your experimental work safely, a set of safety rules and a number of safe practices have been compiled in this handbook for your use. It must be remembered that these safe practices have been compiled in this handbook for your use. It must be remembered that these safe practices are not hard and fast rules and that all circumstances are not covered. If under exceptional circumstances good judgement indicates certain of these practices should not be followed, then you should make certain you are not creating a hazard by selecting a different procedure.
After you have read and studied the material in this handbook, please sign the statement and return it to Room 1D25 Engineering. This signed record will assure us that you have received the handbook and that you understand your responsibilities for safety during your tenure in this department.
Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering