Laboratory and Research Safety
The protection of employees, students and visitors in laboratories at Penn State University is of paramount importance. In order to maintain that protection, the Laboratory Safety program provides a comprehensive safety resource in the Laboratory and Research Safety Plan, in addition to assistance, training, and oversight to ensure safety and regulatory compliance for all uses of laboratory equipment and hazardous chemicals.
Laboratory operations involve the use of hazardous chemicals and equipment, which may pose health hazards and physical hazards to laboratory personnel. These hazards can be managed or minimized through appropriate facilities, protocols and knowledgeable personnel: the foundations of practicing safe science. Regulations which address these issues are intended to formalize existing protocols and training practices. These protocols, practices and regulatory issues regarding research, are routinely practiced and addressed in the private sector. Thus, implementation, while legally mandated, also enhances the academic experience of our students and prepares students to recognize regulatory aspects of research operations at Penn State and elsewhere. All faculty, staff and lab personnel have responsibilities to ensure a safe environment for academic research.