Shut -down Sequences : In some respects, the time when the lab is being shut down is potentially one of the most dangerous periods of the day. For example, at the end of a day's work, people are less alert due to tiredness and thinking about getting home; short cuts are taken to avoid working late. There are fewer people available to help during awkward tasks, such as moving gas cylinders, or in case of accidents; lighting may be poor during winter months, and so on. During your daily shut-down sequence, therefore, you should be making a special effort to observe the main points of your personal safety code. The following are some of the actions to be performed during shut-down:
1. Turn off equipment, bunsen burners, taps, etc.
2. Replace reagent bottles in the shelves and put away apparatus, chemicals and other materials. Radioactive sources and poisons must be locked away. Remember that the cleaners may not be aware of the hazards presented by such materials.
3. Place any other materials in suitable containers, label them and put them away safely.
4. In a biological laboratory check aquaria, animal cages and make certain the doors are secure. Ensure that the animals have sufficient food and witter. Check those thermostats, incubators and other equipment in continuous operation have been switched off.
5. Clean up any spilled chemicals, etc. and wipe the top of the benches with a damp cloth.
6. Remove lab coat, safety spectacles and other protective clothing and leave them in the laboratory or in your locker. Disposable gloves should be discarded and placed in a suitable container.
7. The hands should always be washed when leaving the laboratory or after handling dangerous substances or material which carries a risk of infection.
8. Any apparatus left overnight must be clearly indicated by a notice of the appropriate type signed by a responsible person. Instructions should be left concerning action in case of emergency.
9. Affix paper seals over the locks of the laboratory doors. The paper seals should contain the signature of responsible staff member.