The UAB Department of Occupational Health & Safety's mission is to ensure that our customers have a safe workplace by providing them with the service and knowledge necessary to protect themselves, the UAB community, and the environment.
Like most other activities, working in a research laboratory has a dress code. Since many of the materials used in research can cause injury or disease if they contact the skin, proper attire is for protection instead of fashion.

The basic "ensemble" consists of a shirt, long pants or skirt which reaches the ankles, closed toe shoes made of nonabsorbent material, nitrile gloves, and a buttoned lab coat with long sleeves. Sadly, the shorts and sandals that make our Alabama summers more bearable, don’t provide the protection necessary for safe work around potentially hazardous materials. A set of economical scrubs and work shoes stored in your desk or gym bag may be the answer.

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Examples of improper personal protective equipment (PPE), left, and proper PPE, right

This basic outfit should be "accessorized" with additional personal protective equipment (PPE) depending on the task and agents being used.

Even though we live inland a few hundred miles we can still have issues associated with hurricanes. The biggest problem with hurricanes in our part of central Alabama is spin-off tornadoes. Each year the National Weather Service promotes National Hurricane Preparedness Week. This year National Hurricane Preparedness Week is May 7-13.

UAB Emergency Management encourages everyone to make sure you are prepared for hurricanes, high winds, spin–off tornadoes, and flooding. To help with your preparedness efforts, UAB Emergency Management has prepared checklists that you can take with you to the store to help gather the supplies needed. Also, the National Weather Service has additional information where you can determine your risk, developing an evacuation plan, strengthening your home, and other important information.

uab.edu/emergency
weather.gov/wrn/hurricane-preparedness
Each year thousands of Americans are affected by spring weather. Alabama is no exception and certainly has some of the wildest spring weather events. More people die each year due to flash floods (90) than from tornadoes (55-60).

Flooded streams and low-lying areas are especially dangerous because of two factors:
  1. people tend to underestimate the power of water
  2. the depth of the water can not always be determined
Did you know that 12 inches of rushing water could sweep away small cars and water only six inches deep can sweep a person off of their feet?
Turn around don’t drown!

Read more on Spring Weather Safety >>