SOP for Laboratory Safety | SOP for Chemistry Laboratory Safety

This document details the procedure for laboratory safety of the intended users or concerned personnel. It is the policy of Pharmaceuticals /Chemicals Ltd. that a written procedure shall be followed for laboratory safety by the intended users or concerned personnel for awareness and implementation.

This SOP is applicable at the time of an accident or mishappening in the laboratory.


Persons along with their responsibilities are given below:

S. No




Executive  - Corporate Quality Assurance

To prepare and follow the SOP accordingly. Maintain the record as per SOP.


Trainee Analyst/ Jr. Analyst/ Analyst/ Sr. Analyst

To follow the SOP accordingly


Manager    -    Quality Control

To ensure implementation of SOP.


Manager – Quality Assurance

To ensure implementation of SOP.


Manager         -Corporate Quality Assurance

To ensure implementation of SOP.


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5.1.1 Working with chemicals and equipment in a chemical laboratory presents a series of potential health risks to all persons exposed to the working environment. The laboratories in Institutions/Industrial establishments are places, which are more prone to chemical hazards. Therefore the persons working in the laboratory are often the more liable to be exposed to the chemicals and physical dangers. In the laboratory, safety is necessary because many sensitive, poisonous, dangerous/hazardous substances/chemicals and microorganisms surround it. Frequently changing activities, requiring the use of a variety of chemicals and the simultaneous use of several incompatible and hazardous chemicals in small quantities make the chemical laboratories a vulnerable target for accidents

Standard Operating Procedures for the Laboratory safety

5.1.2 The laboratory chemicals are intended to be used exclusively to carry out laboratory procedures. It is taken for granted, therefore that anyone handling such chemicals is conversant and experienced in the use of these chemicals. To work safely with a chemical one needs to have a thorough appreciation and awareness of its properties potential risks it carries and the safety measures that must be observed, especially while handling hazardous chemicals.

5.1.3 As a general rule however most of the chemicals are marked with hazard symbols. By observing the hazard symbols, risks involved, and safety precautions mentioned on the labels, most of the health hazards could be avoided.

5.1.4  Essentially, there are two types of risks in any laboratory: Properties of the chemicals themselves being used. The hazards associated with the work being carried out by the laboratory personnel.

5.1.5  The risks are there and come from factors such as: Flammability of the solvents/hazardous nature of chemicals. Inhalation of toxic gases, fire, explosive, and toxic properties of the gases.

5.1.6  Basic safety measures observed before an experiment is started to make a direct and major safe working practice. Working with chemicals be they solvents, gases, or routinely used reagents, carries a potential risk, which can be minimized by the laboratory personnel being aware of the properties of the substances being handled and being properly equipped for the experiment or job.

5.1.7  It is advised that the following safety rules may be observed, even if there are no hazard warnings on the label: Whenever working in a laboratory or a storage area, wear safety glasses, a laboratory coat, and protective gloves must be worn. Work wherever possible under an efficient regulation, compliment fume hood at the very least and if the experiment allows, in a well-ventilated work area. Does not allow chemicals to come in contact with skin, eyes, or mucous membranes. If it happens accidentally then rinse splashes from the skin with plenty of cold water. Never use organic solvents, as the body may absorb them. If corrosive substances have entered the eye, take the person immediately to an eyewash station and rinse the eye thoroughly immediately the injured person spreads the eyelids, looks up and down and from side to side. Consult a physician or an ophthalmologist immediately. Also, name the chemical involved. Remove the contaminated clothing immediately. In case of an accident or if one feeds well, seek medical advice, immediately, stating the cause of the accident and the name of the chemical involved.  Do not smoke, eat, drink, or chew in the laboratory work areas.

5.2 Standard Laboratory Procedures

5.2.1 The safety measures that are generally to be implemented in the laboratory must be formulated in the form of written, instruction or operating procedure, containing a brief account of the relevant safety considerations:  Work area, workplace, activity Hazard warning, classification Risk to personnel and the environment Safety measures, rules of behavior What to do in an emergency.

Proper safe disposal

These considerations relate not only to the safe, handling of hazardous materials but also in general terms, to safe working practices and the execution of potentially hazardous activities in the laboratory


Safe handling of hazardous chemicals and reagents calls for experience and caution on the part of the laboratory personnel.

While the usual way of dispensing/transferring liquids is by pouring, there are various possibilities when it comes to removing them there may be spillage, which may affect the safety of the person handling them. It is advised that safe withdrawal aids such as adapters, dispensers, droppers, withdrawal tops/pumps, etc., which can be directly screwed onto the full bottles and also can be connected directly to the automatic analyzers may be used.

5.5 Pipetting Aids   

Generally, the chemical reagents/solutions are being dispensed with the classic pipetting by mouth. This practice involves the constant risk of laboratory personnel sustaining corrosive burns, intoxication, or infections. The general recommendation is “Do not pipette by mouth”. It is advised to use different pipetting aids such as rubber bulbs, automatic dispensing pipettes, etc. to avoid any risk factors. 


5.6.1  All the safety measures in the laboratories must be directed towards avoiding accidents involving chemicals. However, when accidents have occurred the aim must be to master the situation rapidly and confidently and to contain any direct consequences such as fire and avert further danger such as that of intoxication.

5.6.2  Hazardous materials that are explosive, oxidizing, extremely flammable, highly flammable, very toxic, harmful, irritant, or corrosive must be handled with greater care than usual way when they are not in unbreakable containers. If a flammable liquid has been spilled or flammable gas is escaping, the first thing to do is to turn off all the sources of ignition. If a corrosive or fuming chemical has been spilled, it is best to take it up immediately in chemical inert absorbent materials such as activated charcoal, silica sand, bentonites/active earth, kieselguhr, soda ash, sodium bicarbonate as spillage aid, which may absorb the spilled material. For example: Spilled acid and alkalis, acid chlorides, aqueous solutions, organic solvents, etc. should be covered with an absorbent aid and mixed well to assist absorption. Liquid Bromine: react with thiosulphate solution before covering with absorbent aid like a chemisorbed range of absorbent aids from Merck.

5.6.3 Oil/Oil bath – use absorbent aids like chemosorb range of absorbent aids from Merck, powder to absorb viscous oils rapidly and reliably.


Chemicals, especially hazardous ones, must be stored in such a way that they do not pose any risk to human health and the environment. All possible or reasonable measures must be taken to prevent as far as possible any deliberate or accidental misuse. Keep chemicals in tightly screwed/closed containers in a cool dry place with protection against light. 

5.7.1   Preventive measures while handling hazardous chemicals: laboratory personnel are to wear suitable protective equipment like protective clothing (lab. coat), safety glasses, safety shoes, protective gloves face protection masks, etc Fire, naked lights, and smoking should be banned. Materials should be handled in such a way as to prevent the packaging from being damaged and chemicals leaking out. Bulging or deformed containers indicate decomposition/deterioration has occurred and must be handled with greater care and caution before rejection. Escape routes, emergency exits, and access to the emergency services must be properly signposted (identified) and possibly kept free at all times for easy movement. Suitable fire extinguishers, first aid kits, eyewash bottles, etc. must be available at all times.

SOP for Safety in Laboratory


5.8.1 Laboratory gases come in cylinders. The laboratory personnel working with the compressed gases must be thoroughly conversant and trained in the potential risks involved:

Fire and explosion risk. Inhalation risk Toxic properties Risk of uncontrolled release through the use of the wrong or faulty valves, fitting, etc.

5.8.2 To discharge a gas safely, use only the proper approved fittings including the needle walls with or without a pressure gauge. Be sure to close the cylinder valve again after use. Open the delivery valve to relieve pressure on the system. To attach the delivery system first, close the delivery valve, just screw it onto be cylinder outlet, and open the main cylinder valves just as far as necessary. Then slowly open the delivery valve or regulate until the desired rate of delivery is achieved.


Fires involving liquefied or compressed gases escaping from compressed cylinders in which the valve can no longer be closed should be extinguished with a dry powder extinguisher. The carbon dioxide gas cylinder may also be used. 


5.10.1 Always store gases in a dry, well-ventilated fire-resistant location.

5.10.2 Guard against heat, including direct sunlight.

5.10.3 Never roll or throw a gas cylinder

5.10.4 Keep only those gases in the laboratory that are needed for immediate use, put a warning notice “Beware – Gas cylinder”

 Always use a reducing valve to discharge the gases.

 Always close the cylinder valve after use and open the delivery valve to relieve the pressure on the entire delivery system.

When handling toxic and corrosive gases, always use an efficient fume hood.

On completion of the work, it is advisable to move the cylinder to a safe place.


It is very necessary to neutralize or deactivate hazardous laboratory waste, spent, or leftover chemicals. The objective is to convert the reactive chemicals for safe collection and disposal. Always special care should be taken when neutralizing reactive chemicals as they can sometimes react very violently. All procedures must therefore be carried out by a person conversant with all the procedures under strict observance of the necessary safety measures.  


Despite the greatest diligence and best-made preparation and arrangements, there is always the likelihood that something, unforeseen will happen, with irreversible consequences. In such events, the inevitable effects of panic and helplessness must not be underestimated. Notwithstanding, help must be organized quickly and effectively to reduce the after-effects of an accident or incident to an obsolete minimum. Available aids include safety signs, and first aid posts, which must be adhered to.

In emergencies, it is advised to: Stay calm

Make emergency calls/alarms

Without placing yourself at risk, rescue the victims from the area of immediate danger.

Position injured persons appropriately and comfort

Prevent any further danger


The main prerequisites to the ability to render effective aid are the availability of several persons in the laboratory or storage area who have received formal first aid training and secondly of first aid facilities of the prescribed types of laboratories and storage areas. The best type of first aid is the standardized first aid kit as recommended or approved by the agency.


>Environmental health and safety


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