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Glassware Safety

Glassware Safety in the Lab

Its the innocent dangers that lead to the most accidents in the lab. The menace: glassware. People tend to let their guard down when they're at ease, which is why glassware is a constantly lurking threat.

by Philip McIntosh
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Glassware is one of the most commonly used kinds of equipment in science laboratories. Follow all lab safety rules when using and handling glassware to avoid accidents and injury.

All glassware should be inspected for cracks and contamination before use. Cracked items should be disposed of, and contaminated glassware should be cleaned.

Broken and other waste glass should be discarded in a container specially marked to indicate its contents. This is so that housekeeping and other personal will exercise due caution when handling it.

Heating and Cooling Glassware
Heat or rapid temperature changes (including cooling) should be applied only to borosilicate (e.g., "Pyrex") glassware that is designed for such applications.

Stoppering Glassware
Glassware should be vented when heating to avoid overpressurization and possible explosion. Keep stoppers loose when autoclaving or during procedures that require heating.

Label Containers
All containers should be labeled to clearly indicate their contents. This includes glass and plastic reagent bottles and test tubes.

Wear Safety Glasses
Safety glasses should be worn at all times in a laboratory to prevent eye damage from broken glassware.