Laboratory accidents that result in injury, property damage, and even death are more common than we might think. With NIGMS’ investment in research training and workforce development, taking steps to ensure the safety of our trainees and other laboratory workers is of utmost importance.
NIGMS has provided
supplements to training grants for developing curricular materials related to safety. Some of those resources are included on this page and more will be added as they are developed. NIGMS staff have also authored a
perspective in Molecular Biology of the Cell focused on strategies for improving laboratory safety.
In addition to physical safety in laboratories, NIGMS is also committed to safety from harassment, be it physical, sexual, or any other inappropriate behavior. The collection of resources below from within and outside of the United States government may be helpful to NIGMS-funded researchers and trainees, as well as others in the research community. If you have a concern about grant scams, fraud, research misconduct, harassment, foreign interference, or peer review violations, report it to the
NIH Office of Extramural Funding.
VCU created a series of videos about lab safety that feature students from backgrounds often underrepresented in biomedical sciences. This project was funded by an
NIGMS IMSD training grant supplement.
The Division of Laboratory Systems (DLS) develops and disseminates a growing inventory of educational resources, including online courses, e-learning tools, web-based resources, and print materials:
DLS Biosafety Trainings
Biosafety in Microbiological and Biomedical Laboratories (BMBL) 5th Edition
Recognizing the Biosafety Levels
Division of Occupational Health and Safety resources include: videos, posters, and brochures about laboratory safety for the NIH intramural community.
Division of Occupational Health and Safety Resources
Anti-Sexual Harassment: for NIH Awardee Organizations and Those Who Work There
A collection of videos from the CSB, which is an independent federal agency that conducts root cause investigations of chemical accidents at fixed industrial facilities. The CSB makes recommendations that, when implemented, can lead to safer plants, workers, and communities.
Note: program is free but registration is required
Includes modules about safety requirements and components of a safety program. After completing the program, students will:
Laboratory Safety Programs
Laboratory Safety Fact Sheets
Chemical and Laboratory Safety, College and University Labs: Undergraduate and graduate students must be able to recognize hazards, assess risks, minimize risks, and prepare for proper execution of potentially hazardous processes. This collection of guidelines supports institutions from two-year college programs into graduate programs. The following resources were developed with college and graduate students in mind, using the
RAMP framework for scientific safety.
Safety in College and University Labs
Identifying and Evaluating Hazards in Research Laboratories [PDF]
The goal of the Dow Lab Safety Academy is to enhance the awareness of safe practices in academic research laboratories and to promote a safety-first mindset in the future workforce of the chemical industry.
Dow Lab Safety Academy
LSI is a nonprofit organization providing safety education for government, industry, and educational laboratories worldwide. Offers in person, on demand, and online courses for a fee, and 1-minute safety videos free-of-charge.
Course designed to help make employers aware of the OSHA standards and best practices available to prevent injury and illness as well as protect workers from the diverse hazards encountered in primarily non-production laboratories, including exposure to chemical, biological, and radiological hazards. Courses are free, but there’s a charge for a completion certificate. Modules include:
Safety resources for synthetic chemistry researchers including standard operating procedures; laboratory resources, such as signs and Safe Operating Cards; preferred synthetic procedures; and information about physical properties that synthetic chemists may find helpful. The site is maintained by Professor Alexander J. M. Miller at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Professor Ian A. Tonks at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities.
The Safety Net
UCCLS was created to improve the practice of laboratory safety through the performance of scientific research and implementation of best safety practices in the laboratory.
UC Center for Laboratory Safety (UCCLS)
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