Radiation / Biological Safety Radiation / Biological Safety
    Radiation/Laser Safety
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Radiation Safety

The Radiation Protection Program at Texas Tech University serves a radiation-use program that is overseen by a Radioactive Materials Broad License issued to the University by the Texas Bureau of Radiation. Most of our radiation-use program currently consists of researchers using radioisotopes to label amino acids on proteins, nucleic acids that have been isolated or in the chromosome structure; and researchers using X-ray diffraction machines and small sealed sources. The use of ionizing radiation is important to academic research, and using these materials and instruments safely is obviously of equal importance.

Related Links

Visit the following links for more information.

Visit the following links for more information.

    Radiation Safety Manual
    Laser Safety Manual
    Bureau of Radiation Control
    Radioactive Waste Disposal Request Form
    Regulations Concerning Radiation

Biological Safety

An Institutional Biosafety Committee (IBC) is required at institutions that receive funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for research involving recombinant DNA molecules. All recombinant DNA research at Texas Tech University (TTU), regardless of funding source, must be conducted in accordance with the NIH Guidelines for Research Involving Recombinant DNA Molecules (http://www4.od.nih.gov/oba/rac/guidelines/guidelines.html) and must be registered with the TTU IBC.

The TTU IBC is further charged with reviewing and approving research conducted with microorganisms pathogenic to humans, plants, or animals and substances that are known to exhibit unusual acute or long-term chronic health hazards (carcinogens, reproductive toxins and highly acutely toxic pressurized gases). This review is conducted pursuant to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)/NIH publication, Biosafety in Microbiological and Biomedical Laboratories (currently in 4th edition, 1999; (http://www.cdc.gov/od/ohs/biosfty/bmbl4/bmbl4toc.htm) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's (OSHA) laboratory health standard (Occupational Exposures to Hazardous Chemicals in Laboratories (29 CFR 1910.1450)). more>>

Laboratory Safety

The following websites offer excellent information on issues pertaining to laboratory safety.

 Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) Laboratory Chemical Safety Summaries (LCSS’s) - This website contains readily accessible safety information on nearly 100 common chemicals used in instructional and research lab settings. Once you arrive at this website, click on the “Select an LCSS” link on the left menu bar to choose from the LCSS’s.
 U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) – Biosafety in Microbiological and Biomedical Laboratories (BMBL), 4th Ed. The standard primer on proper biosafety technique and practice in the laboratory. It’s in a fairly east-to-use format online, although print versions are available at this site, as well.
 U.S. National Library of Medicine - Hazardous Substances Data Bank. A ridiculous amount of information on an extensive list of common and not-so-common chemicals. In addition to excellent chemical safety information, various information can be found such as toxicity mechanisms and environmental standards for the chemical in question. To get started, just type in the chemical’s common name (or IUPAC name) in the HDSB search prompt.
 Sigma-Aldrich Corporation - Need MSDS’s? Looking for general safety information on a given chemical? If you can’t find it in HDSB (see above), then try out this site. You will need to exert a little more effort in tracking down the information; for every chemical information search the search engine will return about one useful result and thirty useless ones.
 University of Maryland – Glove Compatibility Chart. An excellent, compact resource for determining whether or not a particular glove is adequate for use with the given chemical. This is the most extensive compatibility chart I’ve found thus far.
 Honeywell Corporation – Hydrofluoric Acid (HF) Safety. A very handy website for determining safety procedures required for using HF in your lab.
 GFS Chemicals – Perchloric Acid Safety. An excellent document for determining safety procedures required for using perchloric acid in your lab. You must have Adobe Acrobat Reader to view this document.

Chemical Hygiene Plan
Training Your Employees – Laboratory Safety Seminars
Do you know how, and do you consistently practice, safe science?

Lab safety seminars can provide you with the knowledge – you must apply the practice! Whether its your first time in a lab, or whether you’re a practiced researcher, the lab safety seminar offered through Environmental Health and Safety can be an excellent tool for practicing safe science. All employees and volunteers who are employed in a laboratory setting, regardless of educational background, are strongly encouraged to take this one-hour seminar within the first six months of employment.

Topics covered include general safety practices, personal protective equipment selection, chemical storage, hazard classification and identification, solvent usage, determining chemical toxicity, and special handling procedures for carcinogens, mutagens and teratogens.

Lab safety seminars are available for groups as small as a single research lab, and as large as entire departments.

Contact Jared Martin at 742-3876 to arrange for seminar scheduling.
Is your lab safe? Use our safety checklist
Don’t let the annual safety survey be a mystery! Find out for yourself whether or not your lab is safe.

Look at the safety checklist below. This is the same checklist used by Environmental Health and Safety personnel when surveying instructional and research labs. For each item that applies to your lab, review the guidance and determine if your lab is in compliance.

Laboratory Safety Checklist

Questions or comments? You know more about your research than we do! We continuously strive to encourage safe science, but occasionally we get it wrong, too. Let us know if you feel the survey or the recommended guidance is inadequate. Contact Jared Martin at 742-387..
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