Laboratory Relocation Guidelines - Chemical Hygiene

DEHS has developed this procedure as a guideline to help minimize hazards to University personnel and maintain compliance with all applicable Federal and State regulations during a lab relocation.

General Guidelines

  • The University Movers are not permitted to move any chemical, biological, radioactive or hazardous material.
  • All laboratory personnel must wear safety glasses, lab coats and appropriate gloves while handling chemicals.
  • This is a good time to go through your chemical inventory and dispose of old and unneeded chemicals.  Do not move chemicals into a new lab that should be classified as a chemical waste.
  • Do not move chemical, biological or radioactive waste. Contact DEHS for a pick up.

Moving Chemicals or Hazardous Materials within a Building

  • There are special procedures for moving radioactive and biological materials. Contact Environmental Health & Safety prior to moving.
  • Inventory chemicals that you want to relocate from the current lab to the new facility.
  • Replace any damaged or illegible labels.  All containers must be labeled to accurately describe their contents.  No abbreviations or trade names are allowed.
  • Check containers and lids for damage and cracks.  Replace any faulty caps or containers. Damaged containers cannot be transported.
  • Obtain either moving boxes or plastic bins and a sturdy wheeled cart.
  • Segregate chemicals into the following categories/hazard classes:
    • Inorganic oxidizers
    • Flammable liquids
    • Inorganic acids
    • Inorganic bases
    • Organic acids
    • Flammable solids
    • Miscellaneous organic compounds
    • Miscellaneous inorganic compounds
  • Transport the chemicals in the boxes or bins according to the above categories. Use sufficient packing material to prevent the bottles from breaking.
  • When the chemicals arrive at the new locations, lab personnel will need to check contents for breakage/damage. Chemicals will need to be removed from boxes and placed in their designated locations within the laboratory.

Moving Chemicals or Hazardous Materials to a New Lab that Requires Transportation/Moving Outdoors

  • Contact Environmental Health & Safety. DEHS personnel must transport all chemicals and hazardous materials over the road or between buildings not connected by a causeway or tunnel. DEHS needs a least two weeks notice to prepare for the chemical move.
  • There are special procedures for moving radioactive and biological materials.
  • Inventory chemicals that you want to relocate from the current lab to the new facility.
  • Replace any damaged or illegible labels. All containers must be labeled to accurately describe their contents. No abbreviations or trade names allowed.
  • Check containers and lids for damage and cracks.  Replace any faulty caps or containers.  Damaged containers cannot be transported.
  • Segregate chemicals into the following categories / hazard classes:
    • Inorganic oxidizers
    • Flammable liquids
    • Inorganic acids
    • Inorganic bases
    • Organic acids
    • Flammable solids
    • Miscellaneous organic compounds
    • Miscellaneous inorganic compounds
  • Package each category of chemical hazard class into separate, sturdy cardboard boxes. Single layer only. Use paper or other cushioning material between bottles to prevent breakage during handling and transportation. Do not pack boxes too heavy; maximum 25 pounds total weight per box.
  • Label the outside of each box with the following:
    • Principal investigator's name and contact phone number
    • The new facility's laboratory number where chemicals are to be taken
    • Hazard class of chemicals located in box
    • Attached inventory list of each chemical placed in box along with container size and physical state (ex.  Acetone     1gallon      liquid)
    • Attach note stating the following: This box contains chemicals and must be moved only by the Department of Environmental Health & Safety.

    Note: Boxes without an accurate inventory list will not be moved.

  • At the time of chemical transfer we will need laboratory personnel in the lab where the chemicals are being moved from as well as in the lab where chemicals are being moved to the new facility.
  • When chemicals arrive at the new facility lab personnel will need to accept boxes and check contents for breakage/damage. Chemicals will need to be removed from boxes and placed in their designated locations within the laboratory.

Questions regarding a laboratory move may be addressed to Jane J. Frank or call 831-2103.