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Provide Secure, Adequately Spaced, Ventilated Storage of Chemicals

In academic institutions, the most serious issue is the restriction of access to hazardous chemicals to appropriate personnel.

by James A. Kaufman
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Students and others will steal chemicals. Keep the door to the storeroom locked and only allow authorized people to get at these materials. Today, we are even more concerned about the misuse of lab chemicals. Keep the door locked.

The space provided for chemical storage should be sufficient to permit containers to be no more than two deep on a shelf. There should be enough room between containers to permit a hand to reach in and remove a bottle without knocking something off the shelf.

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Put a supply of colored, adhesive dots in the storeroom. Have everyone mark the cap of everything used for the next year. At the end of the year, make up a list of the unmarked containers. Send the list to waste disposers for a bid in removal.

Chemical store room ventilation is recommended to be one cubic foot per minute per square foot of floor space. The minimum recommended level is 150 cubic feet per minute.

The use of lips on shelves is recommended in locations where earthquakes, hurricanes, or tornadoes are likely. In this case, a removable wire insert type is suggested.

Source: Kaufman, James A., Laboratory Safety Guidelines - Expanded Edition, The Laboratory Safety Institute, .