About hazards and risk in laboratories

Laboratories, due to handling a large number of dangerous chemicals and other substances, sometimes even without a known level of risk, have its unique set of risks. The simplest errors and mistakes can lead to undesirable results, such as;

  • Fires
  • Chemical burns
  • Explosions
  • Occupational diseases
  • Poisoning
  • Environmental damage

Among the listed undesirable events, explosions are quite common and particularly dangerous. An explosion may directly cause an injury, or indirectly due to flying shrapnel. Flash fires and excessive smoke from it may also cause respiratory problems, such as lung injuries.

Another dangerous situation for lab employees, exposure to chemicals via inhalation, injection, ingestion etc. This exposure may have acute or chronic effects, based on the amount of substance-exposed to and duration of exposure. This necessitates to effectively evaluate the level of risk and determine both immediate and long term control measures.

Indirect costs of lab incidents are due to cleaning and decontamination of lab following the incident, restoration of lab facilities, equipment replacement, operational interruptions etc.

From a laboratory perspective, the main focus of this training course will be chemical safety at various stages of their laboratory lives, starting from procurement to disposal.