Judith McBride - Director of Laboratory Health & Safety

Chemical Inventory Management System
OHS needs your help in keeping the chemical inventory up-to-date. At the bottom of this page are articles that can provide assistance in helping you get started. If you have any questions, please call 934-2487. 

Information on disposal and recycling of hazardous chemicals

Frequently asked questions:
  1. How do I get Safety Data Sheets (formerly MSDS) and other safety information about the chemicals I work with?
    There are several options for getting safety information about chemicals.
    • Read the container label – the very best source of quick information about a material is the label. Basic hazard information and a contact address, website or phone number must be available on commercially prepared labels. If a user re-labels a container, or labels a temporary container, they must put the chemical name and main hazard on the new label.
    • Look up the material on a chemical distributor's website, for example: Sigma-Aldrich , or Fisher.
    • Access the ChemWatch system from UAB campus through this link: https://jr.chemwatch.net/chemwatch.web/account/autologinbyip
    • Contact OH&S and ask Chemical Safety to provide you with a Safety Data Sheet or other chemical information.
    • Use a search engine to perform a web search for information
  2. There is a chemical odor in my work area, how can I get help?
    If you have symptoms of a chemical exposure such as dizziness, eye or respiratory irritation, warn others and leave the area immediately then call OH&S at 934-2487 from an unaffected location. Otherwise take a moment to gather some preliminary information, and then call OH&S. To provide the best service to you, we will need to know:
    • The location of the problem – building, room and any other details – in a cabinet, near a vent etc.
    • As precise, a description of the odor as you can give – is it sulfur-like, is it solvent like, is it a chemical you recognize
    • When the odor started – call sooner rather than later, so we have the best chance of tracing the source
    • If an unusual process or activity is occurring in your area – is there construction, painting, or a new experiment

    An important note about odors: When reporting "gas" odors please distinguish between natural gas, with a sulfurous, mercaptan odor, and gasoline with a characteristic solvent odor. The required response to these materials is different.