NC STATE Home Page NC STATE UNIVERSITY - Environmental Health and Safety 2620 Wolf Village Way Cmpus Box 8007, Raleigh NC 27695  Phone 919.515.7915 FAX 919.515.6307 NC STATE Home Page

GUIDELINES FOR SPILL RESPONSE AT NC STATE

Purpose

Spill / Leak Preparedness & Prevention

Training

Materials

Procedures

Questions

PROCEDURES

WHEN A SPILL OCCURS THE FOLLOWING ACTION SHOULD BE TAKEN DEPENDING UPON THE CLASSIFICATION OF THE MATERIAL INVOLVED:


For Non Biological or Radioactive solids and liquids:

Identify the material, its general hazards, quantity, and the location of the spill. Determine if you have the training, protective equipment, and appropriate materials to safely contain or control the spill. Contact Campus Police at 911 for assistance from Environmental Health and Safety if needed. Notify your supervisor, lab manager, or Principal Investigator in accordance with laboratory notification procedures.

Initiate measures to protect yourselves and others. Evaluate the need to isolate the spill area, evacuate the lab, or evacuate a larger area. Contact Campus Police at 911 if evacuation is necessary, or if the need for evacuation is uncertain. If only lab evacuation is necessary, post a sign, or better yet a person, outside each lab entrance to ensure others do not enter.

When calling Campus Police, you should do it from a safe location. It may be necessary to call from a location where you can see the lab entrance to keep people away. Provide Campus Police with ALL information requested, including a call-back number where possible. Campus Police will notify Environmental Health and Safety and/or other appropriate response personnel.

Meet with response personnel at designated location or command center. Identify yourself as a person knowledgeable about the details of the spill. Remain available near the command center to provide additional information or assistance.

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Hazardous Gas Releases

Evacuate the immediate area if rapid release. If slow leak and gas is not toxic or corrosive (in other words .. is safely approachable), manually shut off cylinder valve.

Shut down gas supply by hitting emergency power off button in your laboratory or work area. Hit this button even if gases are automatically shutdown by gas detectors etc. (Unless failsafe design, actual automatic shutdown should not be assumed). If gases can not be shut down from a safe area, then:

Follow lab safety plan directions. Normally, small gas leaks contained in exhausted enclosures would only require local evacuation. However, catastrophic leaks inside exhausted enclosures which could escape the confines of the exhausted enclosure OR small leaks in exhausted enclosures when exhaust is not present (e.g. power failure and no emergency power available) should also require broader scale evacuation. Note that the latter example would also include normal gas usage if automatic shutdown provisions are not included and emergency power to exhaust fans is not present (e.g. use of small cylinders in fume hoods).

Hazardous gases should be stored in exhausted gas cabinets, so evacuation outside of the lab area will usually not be necessary if the leak originates inside the gas cabinet. In the event of leaks that originate outside of the gas cabinet or leaks of highly toxic gases, follow your lab safety evacuation plan which may require evacuation of the surrounding area or building.

Call 911 to report the emergency. IT IS VERY IMPORTANT THAT THE OWNER/USER OF THE GAS CYLINDER(S) INVOLVED BE PRESENT AT THE DESIGNATED BUILDING EVACUATION AREA TO PROVIDE INFORMATION TO EMERGENCY RESPONDERS. Be sure to establish where you will meet emergency response team personnel, along with your name, and the phone number of a safe location where you can be reached (if possible) with the Campus Police dispatcher.

Please recognize that entry into a contaminated area to shut down gas supplies may require specialized protective gear and trained personnel, so planning to provide provision for remote and/or automatic gas shutdown is very important.

Questions

Additional questions or comments about this section can be referred to 515-6860.