How Do I Handle Contaminated Broken Glass?

Last month, we reviewed that only clean broken glass should go into the broken glass disposal box. This month, we will discuss how to dispose of broken glass contaminated with either a chemical or biological agent. As with any spill, you should consult your written Standard Operating Procedures (SOP), which contains specific guidance on cleaning up the spill, and the Just in Time guide posted in your lab.

For Spills involving Broken Glass and a Chemical Agent:

  • Confine the spill to a limited area. Barricade and isolate the area to prevent spread of contamination.
  • Pick up broken glass with tongs, forceps, or dustpan. Place the glass into an EHSO dry waste container.
  • Use appropriate neutralizer and absorbents to mitigate the spill.
  • Contact EHSO for chemical disposal pick up.

For Spills Involving Biological Agents and Broken Glass:

  • Encircle the spill with the appropriate disinfectant in such a manner to minimize splashing. Allow the disinfectant a minimum of twenty minutes of contact time.
  • Pick up broken glass with tongs, forceps, or dustpan. Place the glass into a puncture-resistant sharps container.
  • Decontaminate the affected area with disinfectant-soaked spill pillow or wipes.
  • Dispose of spill cleanup materials in biohazard waste.

If you do not feel comfortable cleaning up a spill or broken glass, please contact EHSO for assistance. Remember to report any injuries to the Office of Injury Management, or spills that involve recombinant DNA using the accident/injury report in PeopleSoft.

Appropriate Summer Lab Attire

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