Shop & Greenhouse Safety
Workshops and greenhouses are important facilities in natural resources research. All appropriate OSHA guidelines are to be observed in machine shops and greenhouse facilities, and each area should have access to an area safety plan with specific practices and procedures to be followed by employees working in these areas. In general, personal protective equipment is required at all times. Safety glasses must be worn whenever there is a danger of flying particles from grinding, chipping, or welding. Face shields may also be required. Suitable gloves should be worn when handling materials or equipment with sharp or rough edges. Loose clothing should never be worn near moving machinery. No machinery shall be operated without all safety guards in place. All personnel must demonstrate competence in equipment use to the area supervisor before operating any shop equipment. Work must be secured in drill presses, milling machines, and other similar equipment with appropriate clamps, chucks, or jigs. Work areas are to be kept clean and clear of physical hazards at all times.
All employees who may come in contact with pesticides used in greenhouse or growing areas must receive training related to the hazards of the chemicals used. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has issued a Worker Protection Standard for Agricultural Pesticides, to protect employees on farms and in forests, nurseries, and greenhouses from exposure to agricultural pesticides. This standard covers workers in areas treated with pesticides and employees who handle pesticides in the production of agricultural plants or commodities. In general, supervisors of areas where pesticides are used must post warning signs on treated areas, verify training of employees who may come in contact with pesticides, provide access to hazard information (MSDS) for all compounds used, and provide a place for decontamination.
EHS provides a number of Safe Operating Procedures (SOPs) that provide additional and useful information.