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Chemical and laboratory safety at #ACSIndy

CHAS-ACSIndyThe 246th ACS National Meeting starts on Sunday, so it’s time to highlight the chemical and laboratory safety programming. If you’re heading to the meeting, be sure to take along the Division of Chemical Health & Safety‘s handy CHAS-at-a-Glance.


  • Division of Chemical Health & Safety Executive Committee breakfast meeting, open to ACS members; 8:30 am-noon, Convention Center room 142
  • Division of Chemical Health & Safety Awards; 1:30-2:40 pm, Convention Center room 115
  • New Horizons in Chemical Health and Safety; 2:50-6:40 pm, Convention Center room 115


  • Committee on Chemical Safety combined open meeting and executive session; 8:30-11:30 am, JW Marriott Grand Ballroom 3; agenda is here
  • Managing Reactive Chemistry; 1:00-5:40 pm, Convention Center Wabash Ballroom 2
  • Air Monitoring; 1:30-5:25 pm, Crowne Plaza at Historic Union Station room Penn Station B
  • Social Hour; 5:30-7:30 pm, Skyline Club, 36th Floor, One American Square


  • Identifying and Evaluating Hazards in Research Laboratories; 9:00 am-noon, 1:30-4:45 pm, Convention Center room 141. This symposium includes introduction of a new ACS publication on hazard analysis.


  • Air Monitoring poster session (6:00-8:00 pm, Convention Center Halls F&G)

You can chat with Division of Chemical Health & Safety or Committee on Chemical Safety representatives and see what resources they have at booth 523 in the Exhibition Hall. You can also follow the division at its @acsdchas and @labsustain twitter feeds.

Protecting a global lab workforce

ACS has posted presentations from the spring 2013 national meeting in New Orleans, and there’s one from the Division of Chemical Health & Safety: “What’s required vs. what’s right: Protecting a global lab workforce,” by Ken Fivizzani, chair-elect of the division. Here’s his abstract:

Organizations tend to respond to external regulations by ensuring that minimum requirements are met; additional internal rules may be added if they can be justified to management. In the case of global academic or industrial organizations, reliance on local regulations challenges safety professionals’ natural instincts to provide comparable safety working conditions to all employees within the organization. Regional managers are often hesitant to commit resources implementing policies that are not required by local governments. Within organizations, site-specific safety policies and procedures should be reviewed for broader application to other locations. Ethical and cultural issues can hinder efforts to establish equitable safety policies to all employees.

Access to the presentations is free if you’re an ACS member who registered for the meeting or are in a couple of other member categories. Here’s the pricing information.

Chemical and laboratory safety at #ACSNOLA

CEF coverMy colleagues and I are gearing up for the 245th ACS National Meeting in New Orleans, which means that it’s time for me to post the Division of Chemical Health & Safety programming for the meeting. As usual, the helpful DCHAS folks have also put together their CHAS-At-A-Glance reference for the meeting. Sessions are in the Convention Center room 237 unless otherwise noted.


  • CHAS Executive Committee Breakfast, open to any CHAS or ACS member (8:30 am)
  • Chemical Safety Aspects of Animal Use Protocol Risk Assessments (1:30-3:10 pm)
  • Ask Dr. Safety About Dealing with Especially Hazardous Materials (3:15-5:25 pm)


  • Health, Safety, Security, and Environment: A Global Prospective (1:30-3:55 pm)
  • Sci-Mix posters (8-10 pm, Convention Center Hall D)


  • Complying with the New OSHA Hazard Communication Standard (9:00-11:40 am)
  • Academia and Industrial Pilot Plant Operations and Safety (I&EC, 8:30-11:35 am and 1:30-4:10 pm, Convention Center 229)
  • A New Vision for Chemistry Graduate Education (PRES, 1:30-4:50 pm, Convention Center Rivergate Ballroom)
  • Social Hour reception with the Division of Small Chemical Business and the Division of Business Development & Management (5-8 pm, Tomas Bistro Gallery Room, 755 Tchoupitoulas St)

For other meeting programming that caught the attention of C&EN staff, check out C&EN Picks! And for real-time updates of what we’re up to at the meeting, follow us on Twitter and Tumblr.

#Chemsafety slides posted for #ACSPhilly

Just a quick note to say that the ACS Division of Chemical Health & Safety has posted the slides from the division’s programming at the ACS National Meeting in Philadelphia last month. What were the talks about, you ask? Check here.

Reflecting on #chemsafety at #ACSPhilly

There’s been a whirlwind of safety activity at the ACS meeting this week! The safety culture symposium was very well attended, and the speakers continually came up with new and effective approaches for the attendees to consider.

For my part, I realized that I need to change one aspect of my chemical hygiene officer training. I’ve regularly used the combination of engineering controls, administrative controls, and personal protective equipment (PPE) as the triangle of safe practice in the laboratory. It’s clear that I need to add a fourth corner: safety culture. The proper use of engineering controls (hoods, eliminating processes, isolating equipment, etc.), administrative controls (rules, policies, procedures), and certainly PPE is not enough without safe behavior in the use of those controls. Also, the paradigm we use in keeping laboratories safe has an economic component. Laboratories should be putting more emphasis on the operational costs of the laboratory, particularly energy. Looking at each aspect of laboratory operation from a “green” perspective has real value, since reducing costs can often result in the ability to increase budgets elsewhere.

We’ve also heard some news relating to the University of California system’s agreement with the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office to follow the terms of a specified lab safety program at all of its campuses. The UC campuses are beginning to work together to develop consistent training programs to address the requirements, and UC has asked ACS to validate the program once it has been finalized. This peer review, which would most likely be performed by come combination of Division of Chemical Health & Safety and Committee on Chemical Safety members, could help the UC system substantiate compliance. Pending legal review and agreement between ACS and the UC Board of Regents, it appears this will move forward, since both CHAS and CCS agreed unanimously to support the project.

The weather in Philadelphia has been great, the sessions well attended, and the lab safety community has had plenty to talk about. All in all, it’s been an excellent meeting! Thanks to all who participated, and if you couldn’t make it, we hope to see you in New Orleans in 2013.

#Chemsafety at #ACSPhilly, Tuesday edition

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#Chemsafety at #ACSPhilly, Sunday and Monday edition

Chemical and laboratory safety at #ACSPhilly

It’s been a busy summer, folks, and I hope to start getting the blog back on track next week. In the meantime, here’s the Division of Chemical Health & Safety programming at the ACS National Meeting starting in Philadelphia on Sunday.


  • CHAS executive committee breakfast, open to all CHAS or ACS members (8:30 a.m., convention center room 107A)
  • Awards (afternoon, convention center room 109A)


  • Latest guidance on laboratory waste management (morning, convention center room 109A)
  • Creating a safety culture in academic institutions (afternoon, convention center room 109A)
  • “Chemistry You Can Taste” CHAS social featuring regional wines and artisan cheeses (5-7 p.m. at the Philadephia History Museum at the Atwater Kent, 15 South 7th Street). Russ organizes this and I’m terribly sad not to go.


  • Creating a safety culture in academic institutions (all day, convention center room 109A); Mary Beth Mulcahy of the U.S. Chemical Safety & Hazard Investigation Board is scheduled to speak in the afternoon on the Texas Tech investigation

STUDENTS: stop by the CHAS booth at the expo and get free division membership. Benefits include access to the Journal of Chemical Health & Safety and the division e-mail list. The booth is #1713 and is shared by CHAS and the Committee on Chemical Safety.

For other meeting offerings that caught the attention of C&EN staff, check out the C&EN Picks videos!

UPDATE: CHAS has slides from talks given at the meeting posted on its website.