You are expected to learn and adhere to the following safety guidelines to ensure a safe laboratory environment for the other students and people you may be working near. If you fail to follow any safety rule, you may be asked to leave the lab or suffer grading penalties.
Once you review the Safety Rules and Department Policies below, you must sign the Safety Rules and Department Policies Signature Sheet. By signing this sheet, you acknowledge that you have read and understood all aspects of the Department of Chemistry’s safety rules and policies and you release Northern Michigan University and the Department of Chemistry of any and all liability.


  • If you have medical concerns, you should seek the advice of a physician before attending labs.
  • You may not work in the laboratory when under the influence of substances that would impair laboratory activities and create an unsafe environment. (This includes alcohol or drugs, including prescription, over the counter, or recreational.)
  • You may not work in a laboratory outside of regularly scheduled classes without permission from your instructor.
  • You may not work in a laboratory alone without permission.
  • You may not perform unauthorized experiments in the lab.
  • Guests are not permitted in the laboratory.


  • Even though your instructor will discuss potential hazards before you begin the experiment, it is your responsibility to familiarize yourself with the experiment (chemicals, procedure, and equipment) before class.  You can locate safety data sheets of chemicals used in the lab through a simple internet search or at
  • Your clothing must fully cover your torso, legs, feet, and upper arms. Your individual instructors may require you to wear long sleeves, lab coats, or additional PPE as needed.
  • You must wear approved, indirect-venting and impact resistant (Z87+D3) safety goggles at ALL times, and you must wear gloves as needed.
  • You must confine long hair and loose garments whenever in the laboratory.
  • There will be NO food or beverage allowed in the laboratory; this includes chewing gum. You may not apply lip balm, make-up, etc. in the laboratory.
  • Keep the benches and aisles free from clutter.  Your backpacks, coats, and personal items must be kept in designated areas.
  • Do not use your cellphone nor laptop in the laboratory unless directed by your instructor.
  • Do not use headphones or earbuds in the lab. Accommodations can be made for the use of assistive technology or experiment-specific hearing protection.
  • Do not use broken, cracked, or chipped glassware or damaged equipment.
  • Do not use an open flame or heat source unless directed by your instructor. Never place organic solvents near an open flame. Always heat organic solvents gently using a heating mantle or hot plate.
  • Never leave an experiment unattended.
  • Note the odors of chemicals only when told to do so by your instructor; then waft the fumes only.
  • Dispose of chemicals as directed by your instructor and the lab handout. Read the label on waste containers before disposal. Do NOT overfill waste containers.
  • Dispose of broken glass and glass pipets in the glass disposal boxes only.
  • Dispose of plastic pipet tips in the red container designated for pipet tips only.
  • Dispose of plastic disposable transfer pipets in the trash (not the red container for pipet tips only).
  • In case of spills, broken glass, leaks, injury, fire, or any other unsafe situation, notify your instructor immediately. Clean up or otherwise respond as instructed by your lab instructor.
  • If you get a chemical in your eyes, a burn, or a cut, flood the injured area with water for 15-20 minutes.
  • Clean up your work space and wash your hands before leaving the lab.

Approved by the Department of Chemistry on 1/11/2023

Print a copy of the safety sheet here.