Chemical Fume Cupboards
A fume cupboard or hood is a local exhaust ventilation (LEV) system that protects laboratory workers from exposure to hazardous chemicals and fumes. It is essentially an enclosed workspace with a moveable sash or door you can open or close, allowing workers to access the workspace while keeping the hazardous chemicals and fumes within the enclosure.
The fume cupboard creates a negative pressure within the enclosure, which draws the chemical fumes and other hazardous substances away from the worker and into the hood. The fumes are then vented outside or through a filtration system before being released into the environment.
Fume cupboards come in various sizes and configurations and can be customised to meet specific needs. They have multiple features such as alarms, automatic sashes, and airflow monitors to ensure safe operation. It is essential to regularly test and maintain fume cupboards to ensure they are working effectively.
They are an essential safety tool that helps protect workers from exposure to potentially harmful substances.
To protect your health, follow these steps for using LEV to eliminate chemical fumes while at work:
Familiarise Yourself with the Fume Cupboard:
Read and understand the user manual or operating instructions provided by the manufacturer.
Ensure the fume cupboard is properly installed, maintained, and functioning correctly.
Prepare the Workspace:
Clear the area around the fume cupboard and ensure it is clutter-free.
Check that all necessary equipment and materials are readily accessible.
Wear appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE), such as gloves, lab coats, and safety goggles.
Verify Adequate Ventilation:
Ensure the fume cupboard is properly connected to an exhaust system and functioning.
Check that the airflow indicators or monitors on the fume cupboard indicate sufficient airflow.
Open the Fume Cupboard:
Open the sash or sliding panel of the fume cupboard.
Typically, the sash should be opened to a height that provides adequate protection while allowing you to work comfortably.
Set Up the Experiment or Procedure:
Place the necessary equipment, chemicals, and apparatus inside the fume cupboard.
Ensure that all containers are properly sealed and labelled.
Arrange the apparatus to minimise potential chemical splashes or spills.
Conduct the Procedure:
Perform your experiment or procedure inside the fume cupboard, ensuring the chemical reactions or processes remain within the fume cupboard's confines.
Be cautious while handling chemicals, ensuring they remain contained and do not come into contact with the sash or front of the fume cupboard.
Close the Fume Cupboard:
After completing your work, close the sash or sliding panel of the fume cupboard.
Ensure that it is securely closed to maintain containment within the fume cupboard.
Clean-Up and Maintenance:
Clean any spills or residue inside the fume cupboard promptly and properly.
Dispose of chemicals, waste, and contaminated materials following appropriate procedures.
Keep the fume cupboard and the surrounding area clean and tidy.
Follow Safety Procedures:
Adhere to established safety protocols and guidelines for working with hazardous chemicals.
Consult your organisation's safety procedures and protocols for using the fume cupboard.
Remember, the specific instructions for using a chemical fume cupboard may vary depending on the design and features of the particular fume cupboard model. Always consult the manufacturer's instructions and follow any additional guidelines your organisation provides.
Research laboratories, pharmaceutical facilities, and other settings are where a-mac Environmental install fume cupboards to remove hazardous chemicals.