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Chemical Spill

Only knowledgeable and experienced personnel should clean up a chemical spill. Spill kits with instructions, absorbents, protective equipment, disposal bags, and labels should be available to clean up minor spills.

Personal Exposure

Chemical Spill on Skin or Clothing

  • Flood exposed area with running water from faucet or safety shower for at least 15 minutes.
  • Remove contaminated clothing, put into plastic bag and seal it. Avoid contact with eyes.
  • Check Safety Data Sheet to determine if delayed effects or symptoms may be expected.
  • Obtain medical attention at the University Health Center or other local medical facilities listed on the Personal Injury page.
  • Take the Safety Data Sheet with you to medical facility.
  • Report incident to supervisor and Chemical Hygiene Officer at 301.405.3960.

Chemical in Eye

  • Immediately rinse eye and inner surface of eyelid with water continuously for 15 minutes.
  • Forcibly hold eye open to ensure effective wash behind eyelids.
  • Obtain medical attention at the University Health Center or other local medical facilities listed on the Personal Injury page.
  • Take the Safety Data Sheet with you to medical facility.
  • Report incident to supervisor and Chemical Hygiene Officer at 301.405.3960.

Chemical Inhalation Exposure

  • Move to fresh air.
  • Do not enter area if a life threatening condition may exist (oxygen depletion, explosive vapors, highly toxic vapors or gases).
  • Obtain medical attention at the University Health Center or other local medical facilities listed on the Personal Injury page.
  • Take the Safety Data Sheet with you to medical facility.

Minor Chemical Spill

Definition

Identification of chemical is known
Chemical hazard(s) can be characterized
Spill kit is compatible with the spilled chemical(s)
Spill kit contents are sufficient for the amount of chemical(s) spilled
You have been trained in spill response and decontamination
Spill response involves no imminent danger to health or risk to structures

  • Alert people in immediate area of spill.
  • Wear protective equipment including chemical splash goggles, appropriate gloves, and lab coat.
  • Avoid breathing vapors from spill. (Individuals using respiratory protection must comply with requirements of the Respiratory
  • Protection Program.)
  • Confine spill to small area. Use appropriate spill kit to absorb the spilled material.
  • Place clean-up materials in bag, label with the ESSR Hazardous Waste label, and submit waste request form on ESSR website.
  • Clean spill area with water.
  • Call ESSR for advice as needed at 301.314.2000.*
*Note: ESSR staff are on-call 24 hours a day, seven days a week. During regular business hours, this number will be answered by ESSR. After regular business hours, it will be answered by the University of Maryland Police Department, who will contact appropriate ESSR on-call personnel.

Major Chemical Material Spill

Definition

Identification of chemical is unknown
Chemical hazard(s) cannot be characterized
Spill kit is incompatible with the spilled chemical(s)
Spill kit contents are insufficient for the amount of chemical(s) spilled
You have not been trained in spill response and decontamination
Spill response may involve imminent danger to health or risk to structures

  • Attend to injured or contaminated persons and remove them from exposure.
  • Alert people in the laboratory to evacuate.
  • If spill is flammable, turn off ignition and heat sources, evacuate area, and activate fire alarm.
  • Close doors to affected area.
  • If the spill or vapors migrate outside of the laboratory to other occupied spaces, activate building evacuation alarm.
  • Call 9-1-1 or 301.405.3333.
  • Have person knowledgeable of the incident and laboratory remain available to provide information to ESSR and emergency personnel.

Laboratory Specific Information

Location of CHEMICAL SPILL RESPONSE KIT: