Ensuring the School of Chemistry is a safe place to study and work is of paramount important to us, and our commitment is underpinned by an effective health and safety management system and safety culture adopted by all members of the School.

Our Safety Committment

“As Head of School, I am responsible for overall Health and Safety Management in the School.  I am committed to ensuring that there is a safe and healthy working environment for everyone.  To achieve this, I require that all members of the school take their own safety and that of their colleagues and visitors seriously.  It is important that you take time to read carefully the School’s Safety Policy & Handbook and to be aware of safe working practices and your responsibilities.  If you see something that does not look right, intervene or let us know. Don’t just walk by.”

Professor Jason Love, Head of School

Core Values of our Safety Culture

  1. Safety is everyone’s responsibility.
  2. Good science is safe science.  Safety is a critical component of academic excellence and the responsible conduct of research.
  3. Developing and maintaining safety knowledge and skills underpins the School’s research and learning, instilling a culture of safety in our students and staff for the benefit of their career development and employability.
  4. Continuous improvement of our safety culture is essential to reduce risk across the School.


Dr Steve Hankin

Health & Safety Manager

School of Chemistry

Room 246 Joseph Black Building

University of Edinburgh

David Brewster Road

King’s Buildings

Edinburgh EH9 3FJ



Tel: 0131 651 3308

    Visitors MUST:

    • read this information prior to entering a laboratory and before starting any work;
    • be shown the work area and the nearest evacuation route to use in the event of an emergency and how to contact a First Aider;
    • have suitable supervision in place;
    • work in accordance with what is agreed with the supervisor / responsible person;
    • wear any required personal protective equipment (e.g. lab coat, safety glasses etc) deemed necessary for the work area and supervisor (refer to the relevant Risk/CoSHH Assessment);
    • immediately report any accidents (including when anything is knocked over) to a member of staff.  No attempt should be made to clear up any spillages unless competent to do so;
    • always wash their hands on completion of work and before leaving the laboratory for any reason, including breaks, even if gloves have been worn;
    • see the Laboratory Supervisor for skin contamination monitoring before leaving a Controlled or Supervised Radiation Area.

    Visitors MUST NEVER:

    • take food, drink, cigarettes, jackets etc into a laboratory.  These must be left outside the laboratory;
    • eat, drink, smoke or chew in a laboratory as these are all strictly banned;
    • put anything in their mouth whilst in a laboratory. This includes pens, pencils, tools, cables, fingers etc;
    • work unsupervised in a laboratory unless express permission for such working has been obtained.  A member of the School’s staff should normally be present in the laboratory and must always be present for entry into a radiation Controlled Area / Containment Level 3 laboratory;
    • touch anything whilst in a laboratory unless required to do so to carry out the work specified.

    The person responsible for the Visitor MUST:

    • ensure that the work area is safe for the Visitor;
    • provide or arrange any necessary instruction on equipment / lab facilities the Visitor will be using;
    • provide or arrange a suitable level supervision whilst the Visitor is in the building(s);
    • inform the Visitor of welfare facilities available.

    For further information or advice, contact the School of Chemistry H&S Manager.