Hazardous Spill Procedures

Following are procedures for minor and major spills or leaks:

I. Minor Spills or Leaks: A minor spill or leak is defined as an occurrence which does not present a significant risk to persons and which can be addressed by properly knowledgeable faculty or staff, and for which appropriate clean-up supplies are readily available.

When a minor spill occurs:

  1. Isolate the spill area and stand by until an appropriately knowledgeable person can clean up the spill. Use appropriate materials to contain the spill in the smallest area possible.
  2. Report the spill to an appropriately knowledgeable storeroom staff member, Teaching Assistant, or faculty member.
  3. Contact Security Services if there are any injuries (e.g. cuts from broken glass) or property damage associated with the spill.
  4. Properly dispose of spill residue.

II. Major Spills or Leaks: A major spill or leak is defined as an occurrence which should be addressed with the assistance of Tacoma Fire Department Hazardous Materials Response personnel. It involves spills which present a significant risk to persons and/ or cannot be reasonably addressed by readily available, properly knowledgeable persons.

When a major spill occurs:

  1. Call Security Services (extension 3311) to report the precise nature and location of the spill.
  2. Evacuate the area affected by the spill. Activate the fire alarm to evacuate the entire building if warranted.
  3. Meet Security Services, Facilities Services, and Tacoma Fire Department representatives. Provide them with information regarding the spill, including the exact materials involved.
  4. Assist in contacting appropriately knowledgeable Science Storeroom staff or faculty who can assist Fire Department staff in identifying the materials involved and in determining clean-up options.
  5. The appropriately knowledgeable staff or faculty member who responds to the scene will assist in determining if a spill clean-up contractor should be called to assist. Facilities Services maintains the name and phone number for one or more 24-hour service contractors.

Note: There are separate procedures for radiation spills posted in areas where radioactive materials are used.