What steps to take before more skilled or trained help comes
If the material could cause a fire or explosion, and what to do if this happens
What to do if a spill or leak occurs
What to do if there is danger from the material if it mixes with other substances
How to safely store the material, including what temperature to keep it at, if moisture is safe, and whether it should be in a room with good airflow
If you find a spill, treat it like it is hazardous until you know what it is. This means:
Put on personal protective equipment (PPE), such asa respirator or mask and gloves that will protect you from chemicals.
Use disinfectant wipes to clean up the spill and put the wipes in double plastic bags.
Contact waste management to clean the area and throw away the supplies you used to clean up the spill.
Always treat any unlabeled container like it contains hazardous materials.
Put the container in a bag and take it to waste management to be thrown away.
Do not pour the material down the drain, put in the normal trash, or let it get into the air.
If you work with hazardous materials:
Read the Material Safety Data Sheet for all materials you use.
Know what type of PPE to wear.
Learn about risks, such as whether the material can cause cancer.
Know how to use the material and how to store it or throw it away when you are done.
Never enter an area where radiation therapy is taking place.
Always use the safest container to move materials from one area to another.
Check bottles, containers, or tanks for leaks.
David C. Dugdale, III, MD, Professor of Medicine, Division of General Medicine, Department of Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M. Health Solutions, Ebix, Inc.