Accidents or emergencies may be non-laboratory related (e.g., illness, fainting, falling, or other reasons), or may involve laboratory materials such as chemical spills, explosions, cuts, or burns. When problems are detected or a request is made, a campus police officer will respond, reporting back to the chief of campus police and the environmental health and safety office.
Faculty and instructors should discuss evacuation procedures with all mobility-impaired persons in the laboratory to determine their needs for assistance at the beginning of each semester. The disabilities services coordinator (x5498) should be included in such discussions as needed.
The first priority in an emergency response is the protection of life and health. The following basic steps apply to ALL emergency situations:
EMERGENCY TELEPHONE NUMBERS
EMERGENCY / EMT DISPATCH x5555
from cell: 413.559.5555
Campus Police x5424
Nancy Apple, EH&S director, x6620
Lori Smith, EH&S assistant director, x6193
Chelvanaya "Naya" Gabriel, lab manager, x5386
Hampshire College's emergency responders, including EMTs, campus police, and EH&S, should be contacted immediately when an accident, unmanageable chemical spill, or other serious problem occurs.
Faculty and staff must notify the lab manager of all spills and accidents. This notification is important to assure that people are properly treated and that the spill is properly cleaned up. The lab manager will contact environmental health and safety if assistance is needed and to complete incident/spill reports.
Faculty members should evaluate the hazards associated with and the quantities of the hazardous chemicals in use in their laboratories to determine what level of response is required in the event of a hazardous chemical spill. Particular attention should be given to procedures for releases of substances defined as reactive (Section 5.3) or acute toxins (Section 5.6). All people in the area must be informed of any emergencies that would require immediate evacuation of the area or building.
Possible incidents should be classified into two categories: emergency responses and incidental releases. An emergency response is an occurrence that results, or is likely to result, in an uncontrolled release of hazardous materials that requires a response effort by employees outside the immediate release area (e.g., campus police) or other designated responders (e.g., fire department, contractor). Situations generally resulting in emergency responses include situations when:
1. Make all personnel in the laboratory aware of the release and instruct them to stay away from the area, or, if there is a fire or health threat, to leave the laboratory.
2. Notify the supervising faculty member, or other faculty member, and the lab manager.
3. If there is a threat of fire or an immediate or significant long-term health hazard, pull the fire alarm to evacuate the building. This will automatically alert campus police and the fire department.
4. If the release is not confined to the laboratory in which it occurs (e.g., vapor release to the hallway), or there is any doubt regarding a potential fire or health threat, call campus police (ext. 5555) and describe the incident.
1. If laboratory personnel believe there is a threat of fire or an immediate or significant long-term health hazard they should initiate evacuation by pulling the fire alarm.
2. If the release is contained in a small area within a laboratory and there is no threat of a fire or immediate or significant long-term health hazard, the faculty member and lab manager will determine if the release is an incidental release or an emergency response. If the release is an incidental release, the faculty member or lab manager will proceed to clean up the material. If the faculty member determines that the release is an emergency, call campus police (ext. 5555). Campus police will call environmental health and safety.
3. If immediate evacuation did not occur and there is any doubt regarding a potential fire or health threat, campus police will evacuate the building until the potential hazard can be assessed. This can be done by activating the building fire alarm or, if there is no immediate fire or health threat, by campus police officers clearing the building.
4. All building occupants must evacuate the building immediately upon hearing the fire alarm or upon being told to leave by campus police. Occupants may not reenter the building until the fire department or campus police has authorized reentry.
5. Environmental health and safety will meet with the following people, if they are available, to assess the potential hazard:
6. In consultation with the above individuals, environmental health and safety will determine:
7. If the building is to remain closed, all exterior doors will be locked and signs posted indicating that the building is closed.
Under the following circumstances, or other conditions determined to be an emergency response by the hazard assessment, evacuate the building and call campus police at x5555.
Provide as much information about the spill as possible including: specific location; the name of the spilled chemical if known, or if it can be determined without risking additional exposure; and the estimated quantity spilled.
Chemical spills are the most common laboratory emergency. In most cases, spills are incidental releases that can be cleaned up by laboratory personnel with minimal risk. Incidental release response should be done under the immediate supervision of the faculty member in charge of the laboratory, another faculty member, or the lab manager. Before anyone proceeds to clean up any spill, ALL of the following three conditions must be true:
One: You know the physical (e.g., fire) and health (e.g., corrosive) hazards of the material spilled
Two: You are confident that you have the training or expertise necessary to proceed safely
Three: You have the necessary supplies and equipment to proceed safely
If the spill is an incidental release and can be cleaned up by or under the supervision of the faculty member or lab manager:
The NMR room (Cole B-16) is equipped with a portable oxygen sensor that presents an audible and visual alarm if oxygen levels fall to 19.5% or increase to 23.5%. Procedures for alarm response are posted in the room and included in Appendix 2-C.
If advice or assistance is needed, contact:
Rescue the victim from life-threatening danger only if it can be done safely. Rescuing and first aid should only be administered by people trained and certified in first aid and/or CPR.
First aid kits are available at the south and north ends of each floor in Cole Science Center. These kits contain disposable gloves, band-aids, and gauze pads. (The kits do not contain topical creams, liquids, or ointments, as these can cause further discomfort and/or hinder medical treatment). Faculty are responsible for having portable first aid kits for use in the field at locations where medical services are not readily available. The lab manager is responsible for stocking and maintaining the kits.
Emergency eyewashes and showers are located at the south and north ends of the second and third floors, and in the basement. In the event of a chemical spill to the body, take the following action:
In the event of a splash to the eyes take the following action:
Any person assisting the injured person must wear appropriate gloves and eye protection.
If a person's hair or clothing catches on fire, have the victim:
Emergency showers or fire blankets may also be used. Call extension 5555 to activate the emergency response system and report the accident to the department of campus police.
Minor cuts should be flushed and treated with first aid supplies. If there is significant bleeding, chemical contamination, possible foreign material such as glass inside the cut, or questions as to the severity of the injury, call campus police (x5555/x5424) for assistance.
In the event of any fire, worry about personnel safety first:
Emergency alarm (fire) pull boxes are located in the hallways on each floor of the CSC. These boxes sound an alarm throughout the building and in the campus police office, signaling the need for evacuation. Campus police will call the Amherst Fire Department.
Using Fire Extinguishers
Fire extinguishers are in the laboratory to assist in the evacuation of laboratory occupants.
In no case should students use an extinguisher unless they cannot escape the area.
Faculty and staff should only use an extinguisher to fight a fire (to put out a fire vs. assisting in evacuation) if ALL of the following are true:
If you use a fire extinguisher:
All students, faculty, and staff should exit the building immediately upon hearing the fire alarm, and the following actions should be taken.
Stairwells exiting from the CSC are located at the north and south ends of the building; these are designated by exit signs located above the doorways. Emergency evacuation routes from the building are posted on wall-mounted maps located at the north and south end of the CSC, next to the emergency showers. Copies are included in Appendix 2-B.
After leaving the building, assemble on the front lawn to the south of the CSC (towards lemelson), at a safe distance from the building. Those people aware of the circumstances causing the emergency should identify themselves to the responding campus police officer(s).
Do not re-enter the building or leave the assembly area until instructed to do so by campus police or the fire department.