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Lab Safety and Chemical Hygiene


In this course, you will learn about the requirements employers must meet to ensure a safe laboratory environment for their employees. It also walks you through creating an effective and comprehensive Chemical Hygiene Plan including basic components, general laboratory safety practices, facility and operation safety rules, chemical hazard identification, and other general safety topics that relate to laboratories.

OSHA (Occupational Safety & Health Administration) has tailored a standard for occupational exposure to hazardous chemicals in laboratories referred to as the Laboratory Standard which is found in Title 29 of the Code of Federal Regulations Part 1910, Subpart Z, Section 1450 (29CFR 1910.1450). Under this standard all operations that meet the OSHA definition of a laboratory are subject to the Laboratory Standard.

Who Should Take This Course:

  • Laboratory technicians
  • Scientists
  • Lab managers
  • Environmental
  • health and safety
  • Coordinators
  • Anyone developing a laboratory Chemical
  • Hygiene Plan
  • Anyone working in a "laboratory"

If you call your operation a laboratory, then more than likely you fall under the OSHA definition of a laboratory. The term "hazardous chemical" is a broad definition according to OSHA.

If you use a chemical that has any sort of associated health hazard (carcinogens, irritants, sensitizers, or anything that can irritate or damage the eyes, skin, or mucous membranes) in the process of working with a sample or product, then you have a laboratory.

Common examples of OSHA regulated laboratories include laboratories that analyze commercial samples for the environmental or pharmaceutical industries, product testing laboratories, university and high school teaching laboratories, and in-house research laboratories.


The goal of laboratory safety is to keep exposures to hazardous materials or risks from physical hazards to a minimum while making every effort to be informed about the risks and hazards. Achieving a zero-risk environment in the laboratory is an impossible task, however, it is possible to approach an accident free workplace by setting a goal of zero incidents and excuses. Safe practice by laboratory workers requires continuing attention, training, and education.

Upon completion of this course, you should have a better understanding of the OSHA regulations that apply to laboratories and be better prepared to develop a Chemical Hygiene Plan for your laboratory.


13 Modules with exams following each module.

course quick facts
course code DED2115
cost $150.00
estimated time to
complete course
8 Hours
course materials
90 Days

Linda R. Taylor, PE is the Coordinator of Environmental Training and Technical Assistance programs at North Carolina State University's IES. Ms. Taylor has over 10 years of civil and environmental engineering experience, and has taught numerous online courses on environmental, health, and lab safety topics. Ms. Taylor received a BS in Civil Engineering and a MS in Environmental Engineering.