5 Safety Hazards in Cleanrooms
The cleanroom is the central hub of production and research, but when things go sideways, the results can be catastrophic. At Medco Supplies, we have compiled a list of the top 5 safety hazards that cleanroom workers dread and some ideas of how to prepare for them.
While your safety glasses, gloves and chemical-resistant coveralls go a long way in protecting you in case of chemical spills, they are still a serious hazard in cleanrooms. Wipers are available for small, inconsequential spills, but larger spills require a different approach.
What to do: leave the area and report the spill to the cleanroom supervisor. If you are uncontaminated, do not pause to take off your cleanroom apparel but calmly and quickly exit the area. Remove your booties before descending stairs. If you are contaminated, call for help, then go to the emergency shower and eye wash station and systematically decontaminate and remove apparel.
Whether you added water to acid and caused a heated reaction or if solvents become heated and ignite, explosions in the cleanroom are a serious safety concern.
What to do: sound the alarm. If you have been trained in the use of a fire blanket, see if you can safely cover the fire. Otherwise, evacuate the area as quickly as possible and wait for help.
Evaporator glass bell jars are notorious for implosions due to their vacuum chamber and exhaust pumps. Prevention includes always covering the bell jar with its protective shield.
What to do: sound the alarm. Due to the potential of gases being released, evacuate immediately.
The special HEPA and air conditioning system is in place to move gases quickly. However, if these systems break down or if a HEPA filter gets a hole in it, a gas release incident could quickly become serious. Gas alarms may give you advance warning.
What to do: sound the alarm if a gas alarm hasn’t already gone off. Exit the area immediately.
Liquids and electricity are constantly used together in cleanrooms, but they don’t always mix. In case of an incident where an employee gets shocked, assess the situation before intervening. The circuit breaker should have tripped, but you can’t count on that, so treat the scene like it is still dangerous.
What to do: sound the alarm and carefully leave the area. Get help for the employee. Don’t try to approach the person if the risk of shock is still present.
Get your cleanroom supplies
Safety starts with the right cleanroom supplies. ESD supplies can help prevent damage that occurs from electrostatic discharge and safety supplies can help protect your employees from common cleanroom safety hazards. Contact us today for a special quote to ship bulk quantities to your cleanroom.