Building Design Issues

Because the handling and storage of hazardous materials inherently carries a higher risk of exposure and injury, it is important to segregate laboratory and non-laboratory activities. In an academic setting, access to laboratory personnel, such as instructors and assistants, by students has a high priority. A greater degree of safety will result when non-laboratory work and interaction is conducted in a space separated from the laboratory.

Provide separate office spaces for laboratory employees.

 

Laboratory users must have a place to put their personal items and don their Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) prior to entering the lab. Critical to safe lab use is having an anteroom where PPE (e.g., lab coats, gloves, eye protection, etc.) can be stored when not in use, and where lab users can leave their personal items (e.g., street-outer-wear, book bags, coats, etc.) and don their PPE prior to lab entry.

 

It is prohibited to store or consume food, apply makeup, handle contact lenses, or chew gum in areas where hazardous materials are used and/or stored. Provide separate areas in laboratory buildings for these activities to safely occur.

 

UC Practice

Prudent Practices in the Laboratory

 

Public access to laboratory personnel in office rooms with separate corridor access is highly desirable.

 

Prudent Practices in the Laboratory

 

An automatically triggered main gas shutoff valve for the building shall be provided that actuates during a seismic event. In addition, interior manual shutoff valves located nearby the laboratory entrance door shall be provided for both research and teaching areas.

 

UC Practice

 

Large sections of glass shall be shatter-resistant and/or tempered.

 

UC Practice

 

In the event of a severe earthquake, because glass in cabinets and windows breaks, glass shall be tempered or laminated safety glass to ensure the shards cannot cause injury.