District Chemical Hygiene Plan



(Chemical Hygiene Plan)

The following chemical hygiene plan has been established for the District in accordance with the OSHA laboratory safety standards. The plan encompasses all District operations when hazardous chemicals are being handled. The chemical hygiene plan will be followed in conjunction with the District's hazard communication program (see Policy EBAB).

The plan will be available for review by all employees. Each school has a policy manual in the school office and at such other places as are designated by the Superintendent.

The District will organize a District-wide safety and health committee to oversee the departmental safety and health committee.

The District will require a safety committee to meet regularly to discuss and review chemical hygiene problems as they arise and to seek solutions.

The District will require that health and safety guidelines be established for the schools in areas of chemical handling.

The District will require that a contingency plan be established for reporting accidents and how to respond to emergencies with appropriate actions.

The District will require the establishment of regulations regarding chemical handling and storage.

The District will require the establishment of regulations regarding handling of spills and disposal of hazardous chemicals, including disposal of laboratory chemicals.

The District will provide various options for the disposal of hazardous chemicals.



(Chemical Hygiene Plan)

General. The chemical hygiene plan contains specific requirements and guidelines for chemical handling and storage, chemical curriculum, health and safety in the classroom, contingency plans, spills and disposal, laboratory chemical disposal, and disposal options.

District safety guidelines for chemical handling and storage. District-wide and departmental safety and health committees shall:

  • Organize a District-wide safety and health committee to oversee actions of the departmental safety and health committees.

  • A list of approved District-wide chemicals, by sites, will be maintained.
  • Additions to or removals from the list of approved chemicals are the responsibility of the District-wide safety and health committee in conjunction with the department safety and health committees.

  • Organize a department safety and health committee for faculty members, support personnel, and students at each building.
  • Have the departmental safety and health committees meet regularly to discuss safety problems and seek solutions to them.
  • Develop a safety and health orientation program for all students and staff members.
  • Encourage students and staff members to develop concern for their own safety and for that of others; involve every staff member in some aspect of the safety program and give each one specific responsibilities.
  • Keep appropriate material safety data sheets ready and available in the work areas.
  • Consider providing incentives to students and staff personnel for safety performance.
  • Require all staff members to read the appropriate safety manual; require students to read the school's departmental safety rules and to sign statements that they have done so and understand the contents; and keep these statements on file in the departmental offices.
  • Conduct periodic, unannounced inspections to identify and correct hazardous conditions and unsafe practices; and involve students in a simulated OSHA inspection.

Chemical curriculum:

  • For grades kindergarten through five (K-5), implement a no-chemical curriculum using only articles approved through the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and in accordance with the Hazard Communication Standard [29 CFR 1910.1200(5)(ii)(iii).
  • For grades six through eight (6-8), implement a chemical curriculum that minimizes hazardous materials/waste to include inventory of all regulated chemicals for program implementation. Follow the methodology of microexperiments as appropriate or experiments that follow the intent of the District's chemical program.
  • For grades nine through twelve (9-12), implement a chemical curriculum that minimizes hazardous materials/waste to include inventory of all regulated chemicals for program implementation. Development of the chemical curriculum will be based upon reducing hazardous materials/waste in the educational environment or experiments that follow the intent of the District's chemical program.

Health and safety in the classroom:

  • Make learning how to be safe an integral and important part of the education process. Teachers of laboratory-type classes will provide safety instruction as it relates to their classrooms. A test will be administered at the end of the safety unit. The tests and the results will be kept for a period of five (5) years.
  • Forbid working alone in any laboratory or shop; forbid working without prior knowledge by a staff member.
  • Do not allow laboratory experiments to run unattended.
  • Develop specific work practices for individual assignments or experiments, such as those that should be conducted only in a ventilated fume hood or that involve especially hazardous chemicals. All chemicals should be treated as hazardous substances.
  • Forbid smoking, eating, and drinking in the chemical work storage areas. Do not allow food to be stored in chemical refrigerators or storage areas.
  • Forbid mouth pipetting and drinking from lab glasses.
  • Provide and assign adequate supplies of personal protective equipment, goggles, face shields, gloves, aprons, lab coats, and shields (see personal protective equipment guidelines). When possible, hazardous experiments should be conducted in a ventilated hood. Substances that are carcinogens or reproductive health hazards and substances that are immediately and highly hazardous require special handling procedures and should be stored in a locked and secured cabinet.
  • Obtain medical attention (first aid) for anyone who is overexposed to a hazardous substance and inform a supervisor immediately. If the victim is transported to an emergency care facility, the hazardous substance's material safety data sheet should accompany the victim.
  • Provide guards on all vacuum pumps and secure all compressed-gas cylinders; require grounded plugs on all electrical equipment.
  • Install master control shutoff valves for gas, water, and electricity.
  • Discard chipped, cracked, or damaged glassware into an approved receptacle.

Contingency plan:

  • Require all accidents (incidents) to be reported, evaluated by the departmental safety committee, and discussed at departmental safety meetings.
  • Develop plans and conduct drills to address emergencies such as fire, explosion, poisoning, chemical spill or vapor release, and personal contamination.
  • Display the phone numbers of the fire department, police department, and local ambulance immediately next to every departmental phone.
  • Provide an appropriate supply of first aid supplies and instructions on their proper use.
  • Wear assigned protective equipment and clothing. Require the use of goggles in all work areas where airborne particulates or liquids are present.
  • Prominently label emergency equipment and train students/faculty members on their use. Provide fire extinguishers, smoke detectors, safety showers, eyewash facilities, and ventilated hoods in each work or storage area and test or check monthly. For example, safety shower-flow should be at least thirty (30) gallons/ minute, eyewash flow should be at least three (3) gallons/minute for at least fifteen (15) minutes at approximately twenty-five (25) psi or less, and hood ventilation should be at least one hundred (100) cfm at working sash height.

Storage and handling:

  • Allow only minimum amounts of flammable liquids in each work area. Store acids and bases separately. Store fuels and oxidizers separately.
  • Avoid alphabetical storing of chemicals, as such practice presents hazards because chemicals that react violently with each other may be stored in close proximity. Chemicals should be grouped and stored according to their organic and inorganic compatible families, as described in the Flinn System; MSDSs should be reviewed for specific incompatibilities.
  • Maintain a chemical inventory, both District-wide and by sites, to avoid purchasing unnecessary quantities of chemicals.
  • Use warning signs to designate particular hazards. Label all chemicals to show nature and degree of hazard.
  • Require good housekeeping practices in all working areas. Wash thoroughly when leaving the work area and before eating, drinking, et cetera.
  • Carry chemicals in trays or racks, not in your hands.
  • Assume that any unfamiliar substance is hazardous and that any mixture is at least as hazardous as its most dangerous component. Do not mix chemicals with each other or with any substance (even water) without specific instructions to do so.
  • Develop a program for dating stored chemicals and for discarding them after predetermined maximum periods of storage.
  • Provide fireproof cabinets for storage of flammable chemicals. The NFPA Code requires that safety storage cabinets be used if more than ten (10) gallons of Class I or Class II liquids are stored per one hundred (100) square feet of floor area. Provide well-ventilated storage for malodorous chemicals.
  • Consult material safety data sheets (MSDSs) for additional chemical information.
  • Store solvent drums in a secured area. Drums must be grounded and bonded and should have funnels installed for safe pours.
  • See that safety cans are leak-tight and automatically relieve pressure at five (5) psi. They must also have flame-arrester screens in place.
  • Store solvent rags and oily waste temporarily in approved waste cans. Waste cans should be emptied daily.
  • Secure shelving sections to walls or floor to prevent tipping of entire sections. Shelving should be equipped with lips to prevent products from rolling off the shelves.
  • Keep hazardous substances in a separate, ventilated, identified area, away from heat and sun.
  • Store breakable containers in chemically resistant trays or overwrap containers. Chemicals should not be stored on the floor except in approved shipping containers.
  • Do not stack materials so they block aisles, exits, fire-fighting equipment, alarms, or sprinklers. Maintain at least thirty-six (36) inches between stored materials and sprinkler systems.
  • Ventilate the storage area (at least four [4] changes of air per hour). Isolate the chemicals storage area from the building ventilation system.

Spills and disposal:

  • Make a top priority of spill prevention and containment. Whenever possible, secondary containments and drip pans should be used to prevent chemical spreading and contamination.
  • Clean up broken glass and spills immediately. Neutralizing chemicals, spill kits, dry sand, vermiculite, and other spill-control materials should be readily available.
  • Develop a system for safe and ecologically acceptable disposal of chemical wastes. It should be made certain that absolutely no regulated waste chemicals are disposed of through the sewer system or placed with general refuse that goes to a sanitary landfill.

Laboratory chemical disposal:

  • Review federal, state, and local regulations that may apply to ridding the school of excess and unwanted chemicals. Before selecting disposal, verify District-wide that no one else needs or uses material slated for disposal.

Disposal options:

  • Option A. Share your list of excess materials with other schools in the system. Assuming some of the chemicals involved are still useful, perhaps another school can use what you consider excess. Review inventories with other department chairpersons.
  • Option B. Contact the District safety officer for direction on proper disposal of hazardous materials/waste and use lab packs. The safety officer may contact the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality. Discuss disposal with this agency; perhaps they have valuable suggestions or can make recommendations for disposal.
  • Option C. Pay a commercial firm to assist in removing and recycling these materials. This is an expensive option. Be sure to ask for references from such a commercial firm. There are reputable and reliable firms operating all over the United States. Disposal to a waste site does not remove District responsibility. Only through recycling or destruction is the District's liability removed. Ensure that the waste handler is EPA certified; maintain records of materials disposed of and the names of the agencies used.

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