1. Background

The Standard for Occupational Exposure to Hazardous Chemicals in Laboratories (commonly known as the “Laboratory Standard”, or “Chemical Hygiene Plan”) was adopted by the California Occupational Health & Safety Administration (Cal/OSHA) Standards Board on February 21, 1991. The Standard is summarized on the following page and the complete text is available online.

The intent of the Laboratory Standard is to protect laboratory employees from harm due to chemicals. The design of the Laboratory Standard is based on a recognition by OSHA that laboratory work is typically different in character from industrial operations in their use and handling of chemicals. In contrast to many industrial operations, laboratory chemical work often involves a relatively large number of chemicals in small scale procedures that can change significantly over time to reflect evolving research.