Occupational health and safety


Use of iron III nitrate and zinc nitrate

Use of iron III nitrate and zinc nitrate: Is it still okay to use iron III nitrate and zinc nitrate, as they are not listed on the Recommended List of Chemicals for Schools. We currently make up 0.5 M solutions of each to use in Year 11 & 12 Chemistry to look at half cells and the electrochemical series. Should we continue to use them and/or are there recommended alternatives?

SOP: Gas cylinders in school science areas

This downloadable document gives the Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) and detailed method for the handling, storage and transportation of compressed gas cylinders in school science areas.

The accompanying example risk assessment should be used as a guide only, and users should consider risks and safety measures in their local environment before proceeding.

Chemical Store (ventilation)

Chemical Store (ventilation): Hi There. Thank you for such a great place to ask questions and seek resources. I have a question in regards to ventilation in a chemical store.

My question is: if the chemical store is also a frequent work area in which the chemicals are made and dispensed, does this change the requirements for ventilation? Is there a difference in law for ventilation with regards to a work area full of chemicals as opposed to a chemical store?

Thanks in advance for taking the time to respond.

Lightning in a test tube

Lightning in a test tube: I have a teacher who is planning on performing the 'lightning in a test tube' demonstration in the school lecture theatre. The experiment involves layering ethanol on top of sulfuric acid in a test tube and then dropping some potassium permanganate crystals into the sulfuric acid. I would prefer it to be performed in a fume cupboard.

Portable bunsen burners

Portable Bunsen burners: In August 2013, a Qld Dept Education Health and Safety Consultant advised us that the Australian Gas Association (AGA) and Qld Petroleum and Gas Inspectorate have decided that the puncture-type C206 disposable gas canisters that fuel clip-on Bunsen burner attachments are not suitable for use in schools indoors or outdoors.

I cannot find any documentation from any of these organisations that detail this decision. Could you advise that portable Bunsens should not be used?

Chemical Safety in Schools manual

Chemical Safety in Schools manual: I have recently started working at a school where they are using the DET Chemical Safety In Schools manuals to assist in the running of the school lab. This system includes using coloured dots to indicate to teachers the safety and usage levels of particular chemicals, and lists detailed safety, usage, storage and disposal information. This document is quite extensive and thorough, however it was published in 1999, which means much of the information and legislation it is based on has been superseded (e.g., Hazardous Substance regulations).


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