Purpose of this Guide

This training guide provides basic information for working safely with chemicals and operations in Visual Arts. The guide is intended to supplement, but not replace, the safety orientation for faculty and students in Visual Arts.

Environmental Health & Safety

The Baylor University Environmental Health & Safety Office serves the University community by providing technical support, information and training, consultation, and periodic audits of health and safety practices and regulatory compliance. Contact EHS at 710-2900 or consult the EHS web page ( for questions on waste disposal, chemical hazards and exposures, use of chemical fume hoods, personal protective equipment, compressed gases and cryogenics, and many other topics.

Responsibility for Safety

Department Safety Officer

The Departmental Safety Officer has responsibility for oversight of health and safety within the department and is a principal contact for faculty, staff and students to address health and safety issues or concerns. The Departmental Safety Officer works with faculty, management, and supervisory personnel to identify potential hazards associated with their operations and activities.


Faculty are responsible for ensuring that students attend training and work safely and:

  • Ensure artists understand the potential health and physical hazards of the chemicals and equipment used;
  • Explain proper and safe procedures for handling, under all circumstances, the hazardous substances used;
  • Provide appropriate equipment to allow laboratory workers to work safely.


Each student, faculty and staff member is expected to attend training and:

  • Follow procedures and practices outlined in this training guide
  • Report all accidents, near misses, and potential chemical exposures to the Departmental Safety Officer

For More Information

For more information about working safely, consult your Departmental Safety Officer. If additional information is needed, contact EHS at 710 2900 or visit our web page at A list of additional health and safety reference materials is provided in Appendix A of this guide.

Emergency Procedures

For any emergencies requiring immediate assistance:

  • From any campus phone call 2222
  • From a cell phone call (254) 710-2222

Fire Emergencies

For any emergency, including fire, explosions, accidents, and medical emergencies, dial 2222 from any University phone. Baylor Police Department will respond, determine whether additional assistance is needed and alert others who can help.

In the event of a fire, the Baylor Police Department (BUPD) should be notified immediately at 2222 and the following actions are recommended:

Fire Extinguisher

  • Put the fire out if you know how to do so without endangering yourself or others. University policy states that individuals are not required to fight fires, but that those who choose to do so may put out small, incipient stage fires (no bigger than a wastepaper basket) as long as they have been trained in the proper use of fire extinguishers.
  • If you have been trained in the use of a fire extinguisher, fight the fire from a position where you can escape, only if you are confident that you will be successful. Small fires can often be extinguished.
  • A fire contained in a small vessel can usually be suffocated by covering the vessel with a lid of some sort.
  • If your clothing catches fire, drop to the floor and roll to smother the fire. If a co-worker's clothing catches fire, knock the person to the floor and roll him or her to smother the flames.
  • If the fire is large or spreading, activate the fire alarm to alert building occupants. Leave the fire area and prevent the fire's spread by closing the doors behind you.
  • Evacuate the building and await the arrival of BUPD. Be prepared to inform them of the exact location and details of the fire.
  • Do not re-enter the building until you are told to do so by BUPD or the municipal fire official.

Chemical Exposures

The following procedures should be followed in the event of chemical exposure. In all cases, the incident should be reported to the department manager, regardless of severity.

Chemicals on Skin

  1. Immediately flush with water for no less than fifteen minutes. Remove any jewelry or clothing that has become contaminated to facilitate removal of any residual material. For pullover shirts and sweaters, it may be beneficial to cut garments off to prevent contamination of eyes.
  2. If immediate medical attention is needed, call BUPD at 2222 for assistance. Explain carefully what chemicals were involved.
  3. Review the MSDS to determine if any delayed effects should be expected.

Chemicals in Eyes

Flush eye(s) with water for at least fifteen minutes. The eyes must be forcibly held open to wash, and the eyeballs must be rotated so all surface area is rinsed. The use of an eye wash fountain is desirable so hands are free to hold the eyes open.

Remove contact lenses while rinsing. Do not attempt to rinse and reinsert contact lenses.

Seek medical attention regardless of the severity or apparent lack of severity. If an ambulance is needed, contact BUPD at 2222. Explain carefully what chemicals were involved.

Review the MSDS to determine if any delayed effects are expected.

Chemical Inhalation

Chemical Inhalation

  • Close containers, open windows or otherwise increase ventilation, and move to fresh air.
  • If symptoms, such as headaches, nose or throat irritation, dizziness, or drowsiness persist, seek medical attention by calling BUPD at 2222. Explain carefully what chemicals were involved.
  • Review the MSDS to determine what health effects are expected, including delayed effects.

Accidental Ingestion of Chemicals

  • Immediately call BUPD at 2222
  • Contact the Poison Control Center at 800-962-1253 for instructions. Do not induce vomiting unless directed to do so by a health care provider. Explain carefully what chemicals were involved.
  • Review the MSDS to determine what health effects are expected, including delayed effects.

Accidental Injection of Chemicals

  • Wash the area with soap and water.
  • Seek medical attention, if necessary. Explain carefully what chemicals were involved.
  • Review the MSDS to determine what health effects are expected, including delayed effects.

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