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Safe Laboratory Practices


General Laboratory Safety Practices

When you’re working in the lab, there are general safety practices you should follow.

Always be aware of what’s going on around you in the lab. Avoid using head phones, ear buds or other devices that will interfere with your safety awareness.


Keep fire and corridor doors closed, unless they are held open by an automatic magnetic device.  Do not block or prop corridor doors open. In the event of a fire, a closed door will help reduce the spread of the fire.


                                                                            Unknown Persons

To keep this simple, question any unknown person. If someone you do not recognize enters the lab, question them and ask for identification. You may feel awkward the first time you do this, but your security and the security of your research are important. If it helps, just start with “Hi, may I help you?”


 Work in Teams


Whenever possible, avoid working alone in the lab. If you must work alone the working alone in labs form must be completed and you should do so only when the risks are minimal and make arrangements with your primary investigator (PI), supervisor, or a colleague to check on you periodically. If your work involves highly hazardous materials or high risk tasks, do not work alone under any circumstances.



                                                                                   Follow All Posted Signs

 If there is a notice of any hazardous materials, always keep food, drinks, cosmetics and medications outside of the laboratory at all times.



Complete Safety Inspections Annually

EH&S performs safety surveys in all campus labs. However, you should also complete safety surveys at least annually. The safety survey will help you identify and correct safety issues.






Drake Public Safety
     emergency 811

Drake Public Safety, 
    non-emergency - 515-271-2222

- Des Moines police, fire, ambulance,
     emergency - 911
-  Des Moines police,
     non-emergency 9-283-4811
- American Republic Student 
  Health Center  
- Employee Assistance Program
Title IX

(These contacts are all relative to being dialed on campus)


Emergency Procedures

Emergency Procedures Manual