How we can help
Please contact us if you have questions about environmental health and safety issues in your laboratory, including but not limited to:
The University ethics reporting hotline provides an anonymous channel for employees to facilitate reporting of possible illegal, unethical, or improper conduct when normal channels of communication are not available or are impractical under the circumstances. You can submit an anonymous report through the EthicsPoint Hotline at bc.ethicspoint.com
Boston College's biological safety program has been developed to protect staff, students, faculty and visitors from potentially hazardous biological materials, to assist workers with compliance with regulations, to provide information about standards and guidelines pertaining to biological research, and to promote good microbiological work practices.
Boston College Biosafety Manual and other resources (BC log-in required)
All laboratory workers (undergrads, grad students and employees) are required to take Laboratory Safety Training and Laboratory Waste Training through the BioRAFT platform. Your PI will need to list you as a member of the lab to have access to this training.
Biosafety Training: Boston College has contracted with CITI Program to provide on-line training in the handling of Biohazards in the laboratory.
All students, faculty and staff who work with Biohazards should take the Basic Biosafety Training Course, Emergency Response for Spills, and OSHA PPE. If appropriate to your work, IN ADDITION you should take the OSHA Bloodborne Pathogens course (for work with human body fluids or other potentially infectious materials (OPIMs), and the NIH Recombinant DNA (rDNA) Guidelines course.
Each course involves reviewing the content and taking required quizzes. Once the course is complete you will recieve a certficate (which you should print and retain), and your course completion will be reported to BC's Biosafety Officer.
For addional information, contact Gail Hall. firstname.lastname@example.org; 617-552-0300.
CITIprogram.org - follow the instructions to register.
The purpose of the Radiation Safety Program at Boston College is to keep exposure to radiation as low as reasonably achievable (ALARA) for users, workers, and the general community. This is done by using appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE), training users in regulatory compliance and safe handling practices, keeping work areas clean, and monitoring for accidents and spills of radioactive materials.
All workers in labs that use radioactive materials must attend Initial Radiation Safety Training, and investigators must have their protocols approved by Boston College’s Radiation Safety Committee. The Radiation Safety Committee meets on quarterly basis.
For more information on the Radiation Safety Program, please consult Boston College’s Radiation Safety Manual (pdf).
In the event of a radioactive spill, contact Eric Johnson at 617-552-0363. After hours, call the Boston College Police Department at 617-552-4444 and ask for the EHS Office to be contacted via RAVE Alert.
All individuals potentially exposed to radiation due to the nature of their own or their lab's work are required to have initial training for radiation exposure before they purchase or work with radioisotopes. Annual refresher training is required for all those cleared to work with radioisotopes.
During radiation safety training, certain instructions from regulatory agencies are presented. The documents below provide important information about occupational radiation exposure and prenatal radiation exposure:
- Instruction Concerning Risks From Occupational Radiation Exposure: Regulatory Guide 8.29 (pdf)
- Instruction Concerning Prenatal Radiation Exposure: Regulatory Guide 8.13 (pdf)
- Rad worker registration form: Bring this form with you when you attend Radiation Training.
- Principal Investigator Application Form: Complete this form and submit to the Radiation Safety Committee for review.
- Radioactive Waste Storage: Post in lab at waste collection area.
- Radio Nuclide Inventory: Post at isotope storage location.
- Personal Surveys for Users of Rad Materials: Post near your work area.
- Radioactive Material Order Form: Submit completed form to RSO. Orders cannot be placed until you have the signed form returned to you. It may take up to 24 hours to get the authorization.
- Radioactive Waste Sink Disposal: Post near sink.
- Authorization to Possess and Use Equipment That Produces Ionizing Radiation: Submit this form if you use x-ray diffraction equipment.
The purpose of the Chemical Safety Program is to ensure the proper handling of hazardous chemicals, as well as hazardous waste management and disposal. Exposure to hazardous chemicals is kept at a minimum by using the appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and by performing experiments in a certified chemical fume hood.
The Chemical Hygiene Committee meets twice annually; this committee oversees lab safety issues and reviews information regarding pertinent regulations and requirements.
For more information about any of these programs, including manuals, please contact Eric Johnson, Senior Environmental Health and Safety Officer, at 617-552-0363.
The purpose of the Boston College Laser Safety Program is to:
- register Class 3B and 4 lasers used on campus;
- identify potential hazards to health and safety associated with lasers, laser systems, and laser operations and to prescribe suitable means for the evaluation and control of these hazards;
- provide guidance for compliance with applicable state and federal regulations and other applicable technical standards;
- indicate specific responsibilities and activities for laser safety, inventory maintenenace, training, medical evaluation, and job assessment.
The Laser Safety Program is administered by the Office of Environmental Health and Safety and the Radiation Safety Committee. Eric Johnson is BC's Radiation and Laser Safety Officer.
All laser users are required to have initial laser training before they purchase or work with lasers. Depending on the laser system in use, other workers in labs may need training to understand their own potential exposure risks. Contact your building's operations manager or Eric Johnson to find out when training will be offered next.