Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

It is the obligation of Earlham College to provide you with PPE that is suitable to the situation at hand.

Eye Protection

Safety Glasses should used in the laboratory at all times, and in any other area in which chemicals are used. It is recommended that safety glasses also be worn in the stockroom due to the potential of a spill of a bulk material.

Chemical splash goggles and face shields are recommended when using bulk quantities of concentrated acid or base (> 4L). Simple safety glasses may not provide enough protection in the event of a spill of a large amount of caustic material.


Use the right type of glove for your situation.

Disposable Latex - General use disposable glove for low amounts of chemical contact. Change gloves often, especially when contaminated.

Disposable Nitrile- General use disposable glove for low amounts of chemical contact. Use for individuals with latex allergy. Change gloves often, especially when contaminated.

Reusable Neoprene - General use reusable glove. Use for acid/base applications and solvents. Wash gloves often.

Kevlar, Heavy Terry Cloth, Zetex, or Asbestos Gloves - Use for high heat applications, such as removing items from an autoclave or oven.

Cryogen Gloves - Use for work with liquid nitrogen, dry ice, or removing items from ultra-low freezers. Do Not Use for work with hot items.

**Note: All gloves have limitations. Chemicals will eventually permeate all gloves, but gloves rated for use with specific chemicals maybe safety used for short time periods.

Lab Coats

Lab coats are recommended for use in lab, especially when working with dangerous and/or corrosive chemicals. Lab coats offer an additional, easily removable layer of protection between potential spills and your body.


While not provided by the College, each person in labs or stockrooms is expected to wear proper shoes (i.e. those with a closed toe). Sandals and other types of shoes with holes, vents, etc. on top of the shoe do not offer any protection from a spill of a corrosive chemical.

Other PPE

Other types of PPE, including but not limited to, dust masks, aprons, film badges, air monitoring, etc. will provided if the situation warrants it. Your supervisor or instructor will advise you of such situations.


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