Laboratory Safety Rules                              


After reading this article and the safety symbols, complete the following exercises: SAFETY EXERCISES

  • All students must READ and UNDERSTAND the information in this document in regard to laboratory safety and emergency procedures prior to the first laboratory session.
  • A quiz will be taken and only the students passing the quiz with 70% or more will be able to participate in labs.
  • Your personal labo
    ratory safety depends mostly on YOU.
  • You and your parents have to print, read, complete and sign the SAFETY CONTRACT,  which will be turned in to your teacher BEFORE any experiments or labs can be done in class.
  • All students must recognize the SAFETY SYMBOLS used in lab instructions and chemical data worksheets.
  • Students must adhere to written and verbal safety instructions throughout the year.
  • Additional instructions may be given at the beginning of laboratory sessions.
  • Working alone and unsupervised in the laboratory is forbidden.
  • Safety training and/or information will be provided by your teacher, lab safety contact and rules will be follow through the whole school year. No exceptions.


Emergency Response                                                                                                                                           


  1. It is your responsibility to read safety and fire alarm posters. 
  2. In case of an emergency, notify your teacher and follow her instructions IN SILENCE.
  3. Know the location of the fire extinguisher, eye wash, and safety shower in your lab and know how to use them.
  4. Know the building evacuation procedures.

Common Sense                                                                                                                                                             



  • Common sense is needed for safety in a laboratory. 
  • Each student should work in a responsible manner and exercise good judgment and common sense.
  • If at any time you are not sure how to handle a particular situation, ask your teacher for advice.
  • It is always better to ask questions than to risk harm to yourself or damage the equipment

   Personal and General laboratory safety                                                                                           



  1. Never eat, drink while working in the laboratory.
  2. When using a Bunsen burner, NEVER open the gas unless you are ready to turn the fire on.
  3. If the striker does not work and you cannot turn the fire on, CLOSE THE GAS IMMEDIATELY!
  4. Read labels carefully.
  5. Do not use any equipment unless you are trained and approved as a user by your teacher. 
  6. Wear safety goggles or face shields when working with hazardous materials and/or equipment.
  7. Wear gloves when using any hazardous or toxic agent.
  8. Clothing: When handling dangerous substances, wear gloves, aprons, and safety goggles
  9. If you have long hair or loose clothes, make sure it is tied back or confined.
  10. Keep the work area clear of all materials except those needed for your work. Take only the necessary materials to take notes, recording etc. Leave all your belongings in your desk.
  11. Disposal - Students are responsible for the proper disposal of used material if any in appropriate containers. The disposal procedure will be given in each lab together with the teacher instructions at the beginning of the lab.
  12. Report any Equipment Failure immediately to your teacher. Never try to fix the problem yourself.
  13. Never pipette anything by mouth.
  14. Your work area together with the materials you used must be COMPLETELY CLEAN AND DRY and checked by your teacher before leaving the lab table. If a group does not finish cleaning the working area, all the group will be stay until they finish the work.
  15. Wash hands before leaving the lab and before eating.


Chemical Safety                                                                                                                                                     


How to smell a chemical

  1. Treat every chemical as if it were hazardous.
  2. Make sure all chemicals are clearly and currently labeled with the substance name, concentration, date, and name of the individual responsible.
  3. Never return chemicals to reagent bottles. (Try to get the correct amount and share any excess.)
  4. Use volatile and flammable compounds only in a fume hood.
  5. Never allow any chemical to come in contact with your skin.
  6. Never "smell" a chemical!! Read the label on the solvent bottle to identify its contents.
  7. Dispose of waste and broken glassware in proper containers.
  8. Clean up spills immediately.
  9. Do not store food in laboratories.


Additional Information                                                                                 

  • Never do unauthorized experiments.
  • Never work alone in laboratory.
  • Keep your lab space clean and organized.
  • Do not leave an on-going experiment unattended.
  • Always inform your instructor if you break a thermometer.
  • Never taste anything. Never pipette by mouth; use a pipette filler.
  • Never use open flames in laboratory unless instructed by your teacher.
  • Check your glassware for cracks and chips each time you use it. Cracks could cause the glassware to fail during use and cause serious injury to you or lab mates.
  • Maintain unobstructed access to all exits, fire extinguishers, electrical panels, emergency showers, and eye washes.
  • Clean your lab bench and equipment before you leave the laboratory.
  • Wait until your teacher check the materials and your table before leaving your work area.



© Analia Sanchez