Laboratory Safety Audits are performed and documented annually. This comprehensive audit includes all aspects of laboratory safety including chemical, radiological, laser, biological, electrical, and other physical hazards. A Laboratory Safety Audit is an important quality assurance tool to help the PI/supervisor assess the safety of their laboratory and provide information relevant to the annual evaluation of the Laboratory Safety Plan. DRS provides this type of audit and typically arranges audits on a per-department basis. However, individual consultations including auditing of new laboratory groups or new facilities for existing groups can be arranged upon request.
A Facility Infrastructure Audit is also performed as a part of the Laboratory Safety Audit. Each facility is required to provide the proper basic infrastructure to perform the research safely. Items considered in this audit include but are not limited to access to chemical fume hoods, general lab ventilation, emergency showers and eyewashes, and ground-fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) outlets. These reports are sent to the Facility Manager but the Principal Investigator must view and acknowledge that they understand the findings since they may impact their research. PIs should work with their facility managers to resolve infrastructure issues.
Audit reports from DRS are viewed and responded to by logging in to the DRS website. The report serves to document findings and provides a record of how the laboratory group addressed the issues. In some situations, there may be mitigating circumstances or risk-based justifications that explain a deviation from an established safety standard or recommendation. In such cases, the response to the audit finding should provide an explanation for the deviation.
Annual Laboratory Safety Audit Checklist - A list of topics included in the annual audit and a tool for self-auditing
Audit Standards and Explanations - Explanation of items on the audit checklist