Roles and Responsibilities

The roles and responsibilities outline below apply to all lab safety officers in the Department of Chemistry. Your lab may have other requirements in addition to these.

1. Serve as a liaison between PI, group members, SCS Safety Personnel, DRS, and other offices.

    1. Distribute information from SCS Safety Personnel, DRS, F&S, etc. to group members.
    2. Bring up questions, concerns and suggestions from group members to these safety personnel/groups.
    3. Interface with the Joint Safety Team to attend training sessions and access safety resources and materials.
    4. Work with PI to achieve proper incident reporting and documentation (if necessary) to SCS and DRS personnel.
    5. Work with PI to develop, expand, or modify group-wide safety policies and practices.

2. Attend meetings with other Research Group Safety Representatives and SCS Safety Personnel.

    1. Monthly safety meetings of all laboratory safety officers are required. LSOs are expected to attend as many meetings as is possible; LSOs are required to attend at least 10 of the 12 monthly meetings in a one year period.

3. Assist in departmental and campus-based safety training programs.

    1. Facilitate new group members taking the SCS Safety exam and DRS online trainings when they arrive in your research group.
    2. Relay information to group members about specific hazards, emergency procedures, routes of egress, access to Material Safety Data Sheets, location and use of safety equipment, etc.

4. Assist in safety inspection of research group labs, distribute inspection results, and coordinate the abatement of safety violations.

    1. Interface and assist DRS personnel with annual lab audit.
    2. Listen to and note any comments or corrections made by DRS personnel during the inspection.
    3. Disseminate the results of the annual audit to your research group.
    4. Provide direction, assistance, and resources to group members to correct safety violations.

5. Maintain group safety information file. Safety files should include:

    1. Group specific hazards and work practices
      1. MSDS
      2. SOPs
    2. Contact information
      1. PI
      2. LSO
      3. One additional contact (at least)
    3. Accident report forms
    4. Reference materials
    5. The latest version of the SCS Chemical Hygiene Plan
    6. Updated DRS Laboratory Safety Plan
    7. Other safety information as appropriate

6. Maintain group safety supplies and first aid kit in an easily accessible area. Recommended supplies can include:

    1. First aid supplies
      1. Large bandages/gauze pads
      2. Small band-aids
      3. Cold compress packs
      4. Medical tape
    2. Safety glasses
      1. As many safety glasses as researchers in the group, plus one extra.
      2. Several pairs of glasses should be reserved for visitors to the laboratory. These glasses should be well-labeled and easily accessible. Re-stock if necessary.
    3. Spill kit(s)

7. Assist PI and SCS Safety Personnel in contingency planning for safety aspects of emergency and non-emergency situations. These situations include, but are not limited to:

    1. Power outages (planned and unplanned)
    2. Evacuation (weather, fire, etc.) A meeting place must be identified.
    3. Chemical spills
    4. Lab-specific shutdown procedures

8. Oversee and coordinate general safety and housekeeping practices for group laboratories. This includes but is not limited to:

    1. Weekly checks of each eye wash station present in the research group’s lab space. These checks should be documented on at least a monthly basis.
    2. Monthly checks of fire extinguishers present in the research group’s lab space. These checks should be documented on the card attached to the extinguisher.
    3. Monthly checks of levels of peroxides present in peroxide forming chemicals in the research group’s lab. These checks should be documented.
    4. Maintaining waste disposal information and records.
    5. Managing disposal of special wastes (sharps, bio-waste, etc.).
    6. Promoting a clean and well-kept appearance of the group laboratory spaces.

9. Conduct one safety group meeting per year.

    1. Conduct (at a minimum) one group meeting per year dedicated to updating group safety policies.
    2. This meeting should also be used to conduct any necessary group training(s).
    3. This is a requirement. Documentation of this meeting (i.e., signatures from research group members) must be completed and stored in the lab safety file.