Handbook for Laboratory Safety

Handbook for Laboratory Safety

1st Edition - April 29, 2022

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  • Authors: Benjamin Sveinbjornsson, Sveinbjorn Gizurarson
  • Paperback ISBN: 9780323993203
  • eBook ISBN: 9780323993210

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Handbook for Laboratory Safety provides insights into what you should expect when you enter a laboratory, along with how to behave in these specialized work environments. It is a practical book that can be used as a general introduction to laboratory safety, but also works as a resource for employees or students who do laboratory work. Students could carry this book in their backpack, whereas university/institute/company laboratories could place the book in every laboratory as a reference. This book is also ideally suited for essential courses for students, (new) employees or laboratory technicians who are starting their work in a laboratory environment.

Key Features

  • Helps increase safety awareness and safety culture in laboratories
  • Provides a handy reference for situations where students or workers need to quickly look up specific information
  • Aids with risk assessment in various situations


Students in chemistry and chemical engineering; University/Institute/Company laboratories; Managers responsible for and/or run risk assessment for the work carried out in a laboratory

Table of Contents

  • Cover image
  • Title page
  • Table of Contents
  • Copyright
  • Dedication
  • Foreword
  • Acknowledgments
  • Chapter 1. Introduction to safety
  • Safety mindset and safety cultures
  • Be familiar with the facilities
  • Never work alone in the laboratory
  • Food, beverages, and smelling in lab
  • Smoking and alcohol
  • Personal state of mind
  • The importance of proper preparation
  • PACE yourself
  • Keep it clean and organized
  • At the end of the day
  • Chapter 2. Personal protective equipment
  • Overview of personal protective equipment
  • Eye protection
  • Lab coat
  • Shoes and long pants
  • Gloves
  • Respiratory protection and masks
  • Hair
  • Lead apron and shields
  • Chapter 3. The laboratory
  • Hazards in the laboratory
  • Safety features in lab
  • Primary work environment
  • Biological storage
  • Chemical storage
  • Gas storage and gas use in lab
  • Glassware and general storage
  • Transportation in or between laboratories
  • Electrical safety
  • A few useful laboratory instruments
  • Noise in laboratories
  • Waves (microwaves, radiowaves, and light)
  • Proper protocols are the key to success
  • Chapter 4. Chemicals
  • Taste, smell, and texture
  • Importance of preparation
  • Safety data sheets
  • Chemical labels
  • Toxic compounds
  • Toxicity assessment for chemical mixtures
  • Corrosives—acids and bases
  • Gases
  • Explosives
  • Flammable compounds and oxidizers
  • Cryogenics and other extremely cold compounds
  • Working with extremely hazardous chemicals
  • Permanent and temporary storage containers
  • Storage and labeling of synthesized products
  • Hazard and precautionary statements (H- and P-codes)
  • Chapter 5. Biohazards
  • Introduction
  • Hand washing
  • Biological safety laboratory
  • Hazard classes
  • Biological safety cabinets
  • Vaccinations
  • Chapter 6. Radioactive materials
  • Introduction
  • The laboratory
  • Risk factor and laboratory type
  • Bookkeeping and monitoring
  • Risk of exposure
  • Radioactive compounds
  • Chapter 7. Waste management
  • Waste disposal rules and regulations
  • Labeling of hazardous waste
  • Waste containers
  • Sorting of hazardous chemicals
  • Disposal of biological samples and biohazards
  • Disposal of radioactive material
  • Institutional waste disposal
  • Chapter 8. Chemical, biological, and radioactive spills
  • Introduction
  • First response to a chemical spill
  • Laboratory spill kits
  • Response to chemical spill
  • Radioactive material
  • Biological hazards
  • Chapter 9. Accidents
  • Introduction
  • The eyes
  • Inhalation
  • Ingestion
  • Skin contact
  • Burns and frostbites
  • Needle punctures
  • Emergency shower
  • First aid
  • Chapter 10. Fire safety and prevention
  • Introduction
  • Fire
  • Types of fire
  • Peroxide forming chemicals
  • Compounds incompatible with water or air
  • In an event of a fire, do the following:
  • Preventative measures
  • Fire extinguishers and fire alarms
  • Evacuation plans and exercises
  • Chapter 11. Pregnancy and lactation
  • Introduction
  • Fetal development and exposure
  • Exposure to chemicals and microbes
  • Chapter 12. Occupational health and response plans
  • Introduction
  • Management and organizational structure
  • Reporting accidents
  • Healthy environment
  • Risk management
  • Emergency response plans
  • An explosion or a major chemical spill
  • Earthquakes
  • Attacks and break-ins
  • Other dangers that can arise
  • Index

Product details

  • No. of pages: 190
  • Language: English
  • Copyright: © Elsevier 2022
  • Published: April 29, 2022
  • Imprint: Elsevier
  • Paperback ISBN: 9780323993203
  • eBook ISBN: 9780323993210

About the Authors

Benjamin Sveinbjornsson

Benjamín Ragnar Sveinbjörnsson, PhD, is an Assistant Professor of Organic Chemistry at the University of Iceland. He obtained his B.Sc. in chemistry from the Unviersity of Iceland (2009) and Ph.D. in Chemistry from California Institute of Technology in 2014. After his studies at Caltech he joined Pomona College as the Robbins Postdoctoral fellow before joining the Faculty of Physical Sciences within the School of Engineering and Natural Sciences at the University of Iceland. He has served in the safety group for the Institute of Physical Sciences and Faculty of Physical Sciences since 2018 and has been involved in teaching a safety course at the university. He is also currently the chairman of the Icelandic Chemical Society.

Affiliations and Expertise

Chemistry Department, University of Iceland, Iceland

Sveinbjorn Gizurarson

Sveinbjorn Gizurarson, PhD, is Professor in Toxicology and Clinical Pharmacokinetics and Pharmacodynamics at the University of Iceland. He obtained his MS in Pharmaceutical Sciences from the University of Copenhagen (Denmark) in completed his Ph.D. from the same university. After being PostDoc at National Institute of Health of Japan (Tokyo, Japan), he moved to Reykjavik and started working at the University of Iceland. He has an Honorary Research Professor position at the Kamuzu University of Health Sciences, in Blantyre, Malawi and has a guest position at the Palm Beach Atlantic University in Florida, USA. He has developed a formulation, that resulted in a rescue drug to treat cluster seizures, called Nayzilam®. Dr. Gizurarson has been involved in laboratory safety since 1987 and was instrumental in starting the University of Iceland‘s safety committee and has served as the chair of the committee since its start.

Affiliations and Expertise

Professor, Faculty of Pharmaceutical Science, University of Iceland, Iceland

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