CHAPTER 9

BIOLOGICAL SAFETY

10.0 PROCEDURES FOR SPILLS OF BIOHAZARDOUS & RDNA MATERIALS

 

10.1  Spills in the Laboratory

10.2  In Case of a Spill

10.3  Decontamination and Clean-Up Procedures

10.4  Spills in Hallways

10.5  Re-Occupancy of a Spill Area

10.6  Procedures for Reporting Occupation Exposure Incidents


10.1       Spills in the Laboratory

Spills in the laboratory, outside a biological safety cabinet, or other physical containment devices, need to be reported to the supervisor or Principal Investigator and documented.  Reported and documented spills are any spills that may contain the presence of potentially infectious materials or the possibility of splashes and generation of aerosols or airborne particles.

 

10.2       In Case of a Spill

Immediate action needed in case of spill

·         Stop work immediately.

·         Notify others in Lab of spill.

·         Avoid inhaling airborne materials.

·         Leave the room immediately.

·         Remove contaminated clothing, turn exposed area inward, place in red bag or autoclave bag as appropriate to biosafety level.  Wash all exposed skin with antiseptic soap and water.

·         Notify the supervisor or Principal Investigator and EHS Biological and Chemical Safety at ext. 2-1781during normal work hours (8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.) and Dial 0 after normal working hours or on university holidays and ask for the Environmental Health & Safety “On-Call” person.

 

10.3       Decontamination and Clean-Up Procedures

HOW TO CLEAN-UP AND DECONTAMINATE AFTER A SPILL 

Label the room off-limits for at least 30 minutes.  This allows droplets to settle and the ventilation system to purge the air.

a)      After 30 minutes don PPE (HEPA filtered respirator, gown, safety glasses, gloves (double glove) and shoe covers to enter the room).

b)      Contain the spill with absorbent towels or pads (do not use plastic backed pads). Slowly pour 10% chlorine bleach solution, Cavicide or any appropriate disinfectant around the perimeter of the spill working toward the center of the spill to inactivate infectious materials.

c)      Allow the disinfectant to stand for 30 minutes.  Carefully remove the absorbent material and place in either a red bag or autoclave bag.  Pick up any glass or other sharps with tongs and discard in a sharps container.

d)      Once all materials have been removed, decontaminate the area again with an appropriate disinfectant.

e)      If a mop is used, soak the mop in fresh disinfectant for 30 minutes before rinsing for reuse.  Wash reusable gloves with the disinfectant.

f)       Remove PPE and wash hands thoroughly with soap and water. 

NOTE:  If the spilled biohazardous material is labeled/tagged with a radionuclide, refer to the Radiation Safety Manual.

 

10.4       Spills in Hallways

Procedure for spills in hallways:

a)      Restrict traffic through the area.

b)      Shut all room doors adjacent to the spill area

c)      Notify the supervisor or Principal Investigator and EHS Biological and Chemical Safety at ext. 2-1781during normal work hours (8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.) and Dial 0 after normal working hours or on university holidays and ask for the Environmental Health and Safety  “On-Call” person.

d)      Don PPE (HEPA filtered respirator, gown, safety glasses, gloves (double glove) and shoe covers.

e)      Cover the spill with absorbent material

f)       Pour disinfectant around and onto the absorbent material.  Allow to stand for 30 minutes contact time.

g)      After 30 minutes, carefully soak up the spill with absorbent material.

h)      Pick up any glass or sharps with tongs or tweezers and discard in a sharps container.

i)        Decontaminate the area again with an appropriate disinfectant.

j)        Dispose of absorbent material in a red bag or autoclave bag as appropriate.

 

10.5       Re-Occupany of a Spill Area

Before reoccupying any area where a spill has occurred:

·         the supervisor of the area or EHS representative must determine that the decontamination has been effective

·         stringent decontamination measures must have been executed if the spilled agents were of a highly infectious nature

·         follow-up steps such as surface swab sampling or medical surveillance may be necessary

 

10.6       Procedures for Reporting Occupation Exposure Incidents

An “exposure incident” is specific contact (eye, mouth, other mucous membrane, non-intact skin, or parenteral) with potentially infectious materials and rDNA that results from the performance of an employee’s duties. 

·         An employee who sustains a known or potential “exposure incident” must wash the area immediately with soap and water. If exposure to eyes occurs, flush with water for 20 minutes. The employee must then report the incident to his/her principal investigator.  The principal investigator will report the incident to the director of the facility as well as Environmental Health and Safety (EHS), Biological and Chemical Safety Program at ext. 772-1781.  If the exposure occurs after hours, dial 0 (zero) for the operator, and request the operator contact the EHS person staffed to on-call duty. 

·         The employee/supervisor must complete a Workers Compensation Injury Report form documenting the route of exposure and the circumstances under which the incident occurred. 

·         Employees are urged to call Employee Health after they have received proper available first aid at site of exposure.  For certain specific exposures, the employee will be advised to come in and be evaluated by Employee Health.  In situations when Employee Health is not available or if more extensive treatment is required, the principal investigator will refer the employee to the UTMB Trauma Center.  The principal investigator will contact the EHS person on call for incident follow-up as necessary. 

·         Potential exposure to an infectious agent, human blood, tissue, serum or primary cells lines must be reported to the PI immediately.  And the employee sent to the Employee Health Center during normal working hours or the UTMB Emergency room after hours, weekends or holidays.  If needed treatment for Blood borne pathogens is best initialed within two hours of exposure.  Refer to the UTMB Blood Borne Pathogen Policy in the Appendix.                       

 Febrile Illness 

Febrile illness must be reported to the principal investigator/project leader/supervisor and the director of the BSL3 facility as soon as possible.  If the principal investigator/project leader/supervisor is unavailable the employee must notify Environmental Health and Safety.  The employee will be referred to the Employee Health Center attending physician for medical evaluation.  Review of potential community contact with febrile illnesses as well as potential laboratory exposure will be evaluated under the direction of the attending physician, BSL3 director and Environmental Health and Safety.  Should the exposure be identified as a laboratory acquired infection, the appropriate UTMB officials and health agencies will be informed as required for regulatory compliance.