Safety, defined as 'freedom from danger, risk, or injury,' is difficult to achieve in a laboratory environment. Inherent dangers, associated with water analysis and research laboratories where hazardous samples, materials, and equipment are used, must be minimized to protect workers, buildings, and equipment. Managers, supervisors, analysts, and laboratory support personnel each have specific responsibilities to reduce hazards by maintaining a safe work environment. General rules of conduct and safety practices that involve personal protection, laboratory practices, chemical handling, compressed gases handling, use of equipment, and overall security must be practiced by everyone at all levels.
Routine and extensive inspections of all laboratories must be made regularly by qualified people. Personnel should be trained thoroughly and repetitively. Special hazards that may involve exposure to carcinogens, cryogenics, or radiation must be given special attention, and specific rules and operational procedures must be established to deal with them. Safety data, reference materials, and texts must be kept available if prudent safety is to be practiced and accidents prevented or minimized.