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Safety Moment Basic Hazard Analysis


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Introduction to Hazard Analysis based on the accident at University of Minnesota June 2014 and the ACS Hazard Analysis on-line resources

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Safety Moment Basic Hazard Analysis

  1. 1. Hazard Analysis
  2. 2. June 17, 2014 Fifth yr grad student was on his way thru lab (from his office to the hall) when he stopped to adjust a thermometer. Before he touched it, his set-up exploded. He was not wearing PPE, and he suffered 2nd degree burns and wounds from glass shards, plus an injured eardrum. The blast broke all sides of the fume hood, damaged the neighboring hood and broke an exterior window. His set up involved the synthesis of trimethylsilyl azide and suspected contributors to the explosion include a larger scale (2.5x previously published procedures) and a change of solvent (from diethylene glycol dimethyl ether to polyethylene glycol, PEG, which may have introduced water thus producing hydrazoic acid). University reps concluded that the incident originated in lack of hazard awareness. “It was not a case of blowing off safety,” says Anna Sitek, research safety specialist in UMN’s EH&S. “They thought they were making the right changes, but they didn’t know the questions to ask to recognize when they were moving in the wrong direction.”
  3. 3. • New Procedure • Modifing a Procedure • Sufficient Risk Rating
  4. 4. Start with a What-If Analysis : • Consult experienced researchers • Reflect on possible hazards including: • Human error • Equipment Error • Process Deviations
  5. 5. Assign Probability and Severity Values to each Hazard: Risk Rating = Probability x Severity Probability Rating 0% 0 1-10% 1 11-50% 2 51-90% 3 91-100% 4 Severity Rating No Risk 1 Minor 5 Moderate 10 High 20
  6. 6. Evaluating Risk Rating: Risk Rating Suggested Conclusion ≤10 No Changes Needed ≥15 Engineering Controls Required ≥30 Substitution Highly Recommended ≥50 Consider Possibility of Elimination
  7. 7. Higher Risk Rating  Greater Controls
  8. 8. “ACS Hazard Assessment in Research Laboratories” For more info check out :