Department of Plant and Soil Sciences

Laboratory Safety Committee

Meeting Minutes

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Fall 2005 September 16, 2005

PLANT AND SOIL SCIENCES

SAFETY COMMITTEE MEETING MINUTES

Attendees: Karen Gartley, Sue Wooler, Jerry Hendricks, Kevin Eichinger, Tom Pizzolato, Jen Gilbert, Brandon Lafferty,
Not Present: Teresa Holton and Greg Binford.

The minutes were taken by Sue Wooler.

The meeting was called to order at 11:00 PM.

OLD BUSINESS

Jerry welcomed new committee members, and explained duties and expectations. Clarified that there are three different Safety Committees within PLSC, one for DBI, one in Georgetown and ours. We are responsible for the Greenhouse complex, the Wilson Farmhouse and Townsend and Worilow Halls including 23 laboratories.

Previous WebCT Training submissions are still outstanding. We did not have complete compliance, but will register all department members for RTK, and if appropriate, Chemical Waste training again later in the year. There are also a few Biosafety audits still incomplete. Faculty had previously approved conducting training through WebCT.

NEW BUSINESS

A new autoclave has been identified as a high priority for the College, and a commitment has been made to persue replacement.

Laboratory Management is being revised and debugged. MIS committed to completing program and having it available by year's end. Sherry Kitto began entering her chemical inventory recently.

The Spring Lab inspections that were conducted by the committee have a few outstanding items that need to be addressed. The follwing will followup:
101 WOR- SOP's, excessive chemicals in refrigerator -Jen

108/110 WOR RTK and Chemical Waste Training overdue for all, soil grinder needs guard– Karen is working on it

125 WOR – RTK Training for Frick overdue -Tom

201 WOR – Updated chemical inventory-Karen

210/212 is OK

214/215  WOR – Frett, Kitto need RTK Training- will resubmit to WebCT

302 WOR Fuhrman RTK Training- same as above

304/306 WOR –Excess Storage
Ceiling tiles need to be replaced-Brandon
(These rooms are in transition)

The department had two incidents this past quarter, both involving acid splashes. In the first, a student was added concentrated nitric acid to sample tubes when the dropper bottle containing the acid broke. About 30 mls of acid spilled on her face, she rinsed using both the eye wash and full shower before being taken to Christiana Emergency Room. There was no permanent damage, but several lessons were learned. Always wear proper PPE, corrosive chemicals should be used in a fume hood, and the integrety of all conr=tainers shuld be assessed periodically.
The second acid incident occured a few days later. A researcher was wearing the proper PPE, but then answered the phone and transfered acid from her gloves to her face. Again after rinsing, she was taken to the Emergency Room, and suffererd only short term burns. It is important to remember to decontaminate and remove PPE before engaging in non lab activities.

Kevin Eichinger Announcements

Relayed information about another incident that also occurred in Worrilow. There was a natural gas leak caused by a dislodged tygon tuge leading to a biosafety cabinet. The gas was being used to supply Bunsen burners. OHS recommends that electric incinerators or disposable sterile loops be used in place of Bunsen burners. Bench top gas valves are not permited to be tied into secondary systems such as Biosafety cabinets.

Safety Educational Requirements and Recommendations flowsheet has been developed and is available for downolad.

The surveying of faculty using extremely toxic or carcinogenic materials should be completed by January.

The new contact person for fire drills is Marvin Clark.

A number of Standard Operating Procedures have been created and placed on the web.

The Chemical Hygiene Plan and Right to Know book has been updated. A complete rewrite will be done in the near future.

Currently interviewing for a Biosafety Specialist to help Krista.

Donna Bowman, Senior Secretary for OHS is retiring, at the end of  Sept. and asked that no party be planned. 

Eyewashes and safety showers willnow only be inspected once per year. Lab workers should run their eyewashes weekly.

We should come up with designated smoking areas as the smell of smoke is going through some labs.

The meeting was adjourned at 12:15 PM.

Respectfully submitted,

Sue Wooler