Accident Occurring in a Chemical Laboratory Essay
It was during the chemistry lesson when the students rushed to the laboratory to carry out an experiment involving acids and bases where they were to taste the reaction between an acid and a base, an acid and an acid and base and a base. Therefore, what exactly happened in the accident is that the students were now carrying out the reaction between an acid and a base in an absence of their supervisor actually their teacher who had gone out shortly. The experiments were being done in groups of four due to the shortage of the equipments and materials. One of the groups was not serious with the experiment in that they took advantage of their teacher’s absence and begun chatting and cracking jokes. They lost their concentration and unfortunately, the reagents in the tube splashed out into the eyes of one of the students. The student had not put on goggles due to their shortage thus the chemical splashed into his eyes. He yelled loudly attracting the attention of the whole laboratory. The other students came to his recue where he was taken to the eyewash station and his face placed under water for 15 minutes as one of the students ran to call the teacher (Environment, Health and Safety). Luckily, the reagents had not penetrated deep into his eyes and so he was okay after the fifteen minutes but was later taken to hospital for further check up.
The cause of the accident was actually carelessness because the students were busy chatting and laughing softly without concentrating on the experiment. The student who was holding the tube with the reagents was actually laughing at a joke cracked by one of them. One important concept they forgot is that the laboratory has a number of rules and regulations that need to be followed. For example, the laboratory is not a place to make jokes and laugh; it is a place to carry out experiments with a lot of concentration and keenness. In case the same thing is repeated again, it can turn out to be worse than the initial one where all the students in the group or the entire laboratory may be affected. For example, when these students continue with the behavior of laughing and cracking jokes in the laboratory while carrying out experiments involving flammable chemicals or fire, they could end up burning up in the laboratory or burning down the entire laboratory. Therefore, there is the need for the students to obey laboratory rules and behave well while carrying out the experiments.
Before looking at the steps that were put in place to prevent further accidents of the same type, it is important to note the laboratory personal; protection equipments that are available in almost all the school laboratories (Prudent Practices in the Laboratory). These include safety goggles, aprons, gloves, and lab coats. The students need to note such equipments and how they are used so that they may make use of them when they go to the laboratory for experiments. In order to prevent a re-occurrence of such accidents, the laboratory management laid down a number of measures. First, students will not be allowed to carry out dangerous experiments particularly those involving flammable chemicals and fire without the presence of a teacher. All students who enter the laboratory must follow all laboratory rules and regulations to the fullest. In order to prevent chemical splash on faces of the students when carrying out experiments, all of them must wear goggles to protect their eyes against chemical splash. In case the chemical splash on one of the students’ goggles; he must not take them off! He has to yell for help in case there is no person near to help. Then move to the eye wash station and rinse the face quickly with the goggles still on. Then take off the goggles and rinse the face again. Nevertheless, such processes can be prevented if the students obey the laboratory rules and regulations.