Working with Lab Equipment

Precautions One Should Follow While Working with Lab Equipment


Before starting an experiment with lab equipment, you should read all the safety information and understand everything about the instruments you are going to use.

Working in a laboratory means working with dangerous chemicals and equipment and this calls for the need of taking preventive measures to avoid any kind of disasters in the lab. You need to know that all the safety rules are effective only when you enforce them. This is why strong lab management along with the right rules is also important.

A laboratory is an inherently dangerous place with risky procedures, dangerous chemicals, and even fire hazards which is why it becomes important for everyone to take precautions. So, whether you are a student/teacher working in a laboratory or someone developing or updating the rules of your own lab, here are some of the common safety rules you can follow.

General Lab Safety Rules

Listed below is a list of all the basic rules and best practices that researchers should have to follow while working within a laboratory to ensure a safe working environment.

  • Wear Protective Lab Clothes:

    If you are inside the lab, make sure you use PPE all the time. Before you start experimenting, wear a lab coat with full sleeves, safety goggles, and closed-toe shoes. Also, keep your hair tied up if you have long hair to keep it out of the way while working in a lab.

  • Know What To Do In Case Of Fire:

    You need to make sure that you always store inflammable material in the fireproof cabinets. It’s dangerous to leave them lying around the lab. Check where the fire extinguisher is present and call the fire department in case of extreme emergencies.

  • Act Responsibly:

    Plan and research your experiment in advance before performing it. Don’t conduct random experiments. Whenever you come to the lab, you should have the right attitude and you should be focused. Even the slightest distraction can cause irreversible damage to act responsibly. Double-check everything including the chemicals and equipment before you use them and clean them up after you are done using them.

  • Work With A Partner:

    Try to find a partner and work in pairs always. We understand that this is not always possible but having a partner can reduce the chances of mistakes and slip-ups thus preventing major damage. Having a partner is also good in case of minor injuries such as a cut from broken glass as they can quickly bring the first aid kit and help you out.

  • Don’t Bring Food Or Drink:

    It can sometimes be tempting to drink some coffee or water and eat some chips while working on your experiments but steer clear of this. They are a source of distraction. There is also a possibility of contamination as there are chemical residues present on the table you are working on and on your hands as well.

  • Dispose of The Waste Safely:

    This is a rule most people neglect. Don’t pour chemicals down the sink. Instead, use designated disposal bins. Also, don’t pour plant waste down the sink as it can clog the drains.

  • Handle Equipment Carefully:

    Sometimes lab equipment can cause accidents if they are mishandled. Switch off Bunsen burners, use razor blades with caution and unplug any hot plates. Also, remember to put back all the equipment used in their respective places.

  • Don’t Panic In Case Of Accidents:

    Sometimes no matter how many precautions you take, accidents happen and panicking can worsen the situation. Stay calm and don’t run else you might trip over wires or some chemical bottles. Lastly, keep your supervisor informed about the experiment you are doing.

  • Cautiously Use Chemicals:

    While working in a lab, people often get injuries from chemicals but sometimes they can be lethal as well. You also need to make sure that you don’t sniff or taste any kind of chemical. Double-check the reagent you are going to use and mix your chemicals cautiously.

  • Restrict Experiments To The Lab:

    Don’t use lab equipment outside the lab. Don’t take them with you to your home or any other place for preparation or some other purpose. Also, don’t forget to wash the clothes you used in the lab before reusing them.

The Bottom Line

While working in a lab, you need to commit to keeping yourself and the people around you safe from any kind of injury or disaster. This can be achieved by working carefully, attentively, and safely in your laboratory. We hope these rules will help you out. If you are searching for the best lab equipment calibration in San Francisco, San Diego, and Los Angeles then you can rely on Biotechnical Services Inc. We will help you out in lab equipment calibration, repair, validation, and more so get in touch with us today and visit our website!

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