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California State University, Long Beach
College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics

Room Access Restrictions and Safety Rules

(March 2015)


This handout is part of a safety program developed to protect both contract workers and CSULB people.1

For your protection, every room in the CNSM has been checked for safety hazards, and labels indicating room access restrictions have been put on every room entry door. These "ROOM ACCESS" labels say how much safety training is required to enter the room when you are not "escorted" by people (students, professors etc.) who are familiar with the hazards in the room. Everyone is required to read and comply with the ROOM ACCESS LABELS each time unescorted entry into a science area is made.

This access training program was designed to give you the training you need to safely enter and/or work in nearly all unoccupied science areas. Managers, Supervisors and Contractors are responsible for communicating and enforcing these rules for their workers. Extra copies of this guide and Material Safety Data Sheets for science chemicals present in science areas can be provided by the CNSM Safety Office - (562) 985-5623.


There are three different ROOM ACCESS labels:


Anyone who has a key may enter these rooms unescorted. Everyone who enters still must follow the simple safety rules in "section III" of this handout. Some of these rooms may contain small amounts of hazardous materials.


Once you have understood and agreed to follow the safety rules in this handout, you may enter these rooms unescorted. Understanding the safety rules in this handout gives you the "special permission" you need to enter. People who enter these rooms when no science people are around need to be especially careful because of the chemicals and/or equipment in these locations. There may be especially dangerous and/or large amounts of chemicals. Potentially dangerous equipment may be running or could start automatically. You are allowed to physically escort untrained people (like subcontractors) or train them yourself using this handout.


You MAY NOT enter these rooms unless you are escorted by the person whose name is posted at the doorway or by a CSULB Safety person, or by the appropriate CNSM administrator. About 12 rooms are marked with these ORANGE/RED labels. Most of these rooms have items that make unescorted entry dangerous. Access to these rooms should be requested in advance to prevent delays in your work schedule.

EMERGENCY NOTE: Normally these rooms are safe enough for allow for immediate rescue removal of an injured person.


  1. LOCK UP! If YOU unlocked a room, never leave it unattended. If you leave a room that you unlocked, you could be held responsible if someone gets in and hurts themself, or steals or damages items in that room in your absence. Nearly every room has expensive items and dangerous chemicals. ALWAYS LOCK UP WHEN YOU LEAVE!
  2. No food or drink is allowed in labs. Smoking is not allowed in University buildings.
  3. Follow safety instructions or warnings given by people who use the space. If they say "get out", please leave promptly. Notify your supervisor or one of the bosses listed on page 5 if necessary.
  4. If no CNSM or trained people are present, you have Special Permission. Enter and do your work following these rules.
  5. Do not enter a room posted on the outside with a temporary sign stating "KEEP OUT", "DANGER" etc. Sometimes conditions inside are especially dangerous or sensitive that outside people must keep out for a period of time.
  6. When entering areas containing hazardous materials or hazardous equipment do not touch items on lab benches, in fume hoods, etc. DO NOT PUT ANY TOOLS OR OTHER ITEMS ON LAB BENCHES OR SINK AREAS THAT ARE MARKED WITH WARNING LABELS (see below).
  7. If equipment or chemicals are in your way, ask a person who works in the room or someone from the science contact list (below) to move them to a safe location. Do not move them yourselves. For example, you might find chemicals stored under a sink which you must repair. You must not work on the sink if the chemical containers block your way, or could be tipped or broken during your job. Someone from the CNSM must move the chemicals for you.
  8. Always read warning signs and labels on items in the rooms, such as "Danger - High Voltage", or "corrosive", "poison", "flammable", "oxidizer" etc. Don't touch these items and use extreme caution when working in the room.
  9. Always read signs placed on trash cans in rooms. Plastic and metal trash cans or baskets are sometimes used for special purposes. For example, some trash cans are used for the collection of broken glass. DON'T TOUCH containers used for the collection of radioactive waste (see labels below) or biohazardous "Medical Waste" (containers with RED bags and "biohazard" labels).

    NEVER THROW BROKEN GLASS OR SHARP ITEMS IN THE REGULAR TRASH! You MAY throw them in the box used to collect broken lab glass, found in most labs. CUSTODIANS: If you see sharp things in the trash, do not touch, leave it there and notify your supervisor.

  10. Do not touch areas marked "RADIOACTIVE". Here are several examples of radioactive materials labels:

    "Caution - Radioactive Materials"

    These labels usually have red letters on a yellow background. All rooms containing radioactive materials have been labeled "Caution - Radioactive Materials" and require access training for anyone who is unescorted. If you need to work on anything labeled RADIOACTIVE you must first call the Radiation Safety Office at x55623 to get their help.

  11. Always read signs placed on sinks. Most rooms that use radioactive material have at least one sink used for the rinsing of radioactive glassware; these sinks are clearly labeled and the sink, drain pipes, counter top and faucet areas may be contaminated.
  12. Note the locations of eyewash/shower units as you enter the laboratories. Look at how they work. Once turned on, they must be turned-off by hand (turn-off is NOT automatic). Knowing how they work can prevent a flood if a falling object accidentally turns one on. DOWN = ON. UP = OFF.

    Use this equipment yourself if you get chemicals on your body or in you eyes - either from accidents involving lab chemicals or from YOUR own service chemicals such as corrosive cleaners, strippers, solvents, battery acid, etc. To use the shower or eyewash, turn it on and flush the contaminated body part for 15 minutes. The floor will flood (most units have no drains) but do not worry about that. Your health is more important!

  13. NEVER clean up or touch a puddle of liquid unless it is OBVIOUSLY from a water leak (it could be acid or a poisonous chemical). Report suspicious spills to your supervisor.
  14. Always check for natural gas problems when you enter a room. Some labs have more than 20 outlets and students occasionally forget to turn one off.
  15. If an item is knocked-over or there seems to be any problem with materials or equipment in a room (noise, smell, heat, smoke, etc.) please report it to your supervisor, the Science Safety Office, and/or public safety. Use an emergency phone box or 911 from an office phone as necessary.
  16. Some CSULB buildings have RADIOACTIVE EXIT signs. Never touch an EXIT sign without first getting radiation safety training from the campus Radiation Safety Office. Report any missing or damaged signs to your supervisor, who should immediately call Radiation Safety (x55623).


Note: These numbers are on-campus phone extensions. From regular phones, the complete phone number is (562) 98 plus the extension. Example: x54101 would be (562) 985-4101 from your cell phone.

PUBLIC SAFETY - 54101 (Dial 911 in emergencies)

CNSM Safety Office (J. de La Cuesta & C. Frost) 55623 Cells (714) 222-0963 & (562) 577-0504

Dean Bennett 51521
Assoc. Dean Slowinski 58064
Assoc. Dean Taylor 55545
CNSM Operations Officer Karteron 54265
Chemistry Dept 54941
Biology Dept 54806
Biology Staff 54038
Geology Dept 54809
Physics Dept 54924
Physics Issue Room 54853
EH&S George Alfaro 52378

1 In conformity with CSULB's Cal/OSHA Injury, Illness and Prevention Plan