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Classroom, Laboratory, and Shop Safety

General Policies

The college is responsible for providing a safe and secure area for student activities in the classroom, laboratories, and other places where student attendance is required or permitted.

Accident prevention should be practiced and taught as an objective of any shop or laboratory program. Faculty members must inspect classrooms, laboratories, and other areas for which they are responsibleto see that acceptable standards for safety are met. If appropriate, safety manuals should be distributed to students. Acceptable standards in the classroom include the removal of any known hazard, proper instruction, and adequate supervision for the activity at hand. The faculty member should report any potential hazard to the appropriate dean immediately. The dean will take the necessary actions to correct the hazard.

Eye Protection

State law requires that all students in potentially hazardous laboratories and shops have approved eye protection. This will be enforced by every instructor. Faculty and staff members are expected to set a proper example in this regard.

The Law states:

  1. Every student and teacher in any school, college, or university participating in any of the following courses must wear industrial quality eye protection:
    1. Vocational or industrial arts shops or laboratories involving experience with the following:

      1. Hot molten metals;
      2. Milling, sawing, turning, shaping, cutting, grinding, or stamping of any solid materials;
      3. Heat treatment, tempering, or kiln firing of any metal or other materials;
      4. Gas or electric arc welding;
      5. Repair of any vehicle;
      6. Caustic or explosive materials.
    2. Chemical or combined chemical-physical laboratories involving caustic or explosive chemicals or hot liquids or solids shall be required to wear industrial quality eye protection at all times while participating in such courses or laboratories.
  2. All faculty, students, and other participants in potentially hazardous laboratories and shops must provide their own approved eye protection. Faculty should be able to provide protective eyewear for visitors.
  3. Industrial quality eye protective devices, as needed in this act, means devices providing side protection and meeting the standards of the American Standards Association Safety Code for Head, Eye, and respiratory Protection Z2, 1-1959 promulgated by the American Standards Association, Inc. Students are required to wear shoes and other appropriate clothing or protective devices in laboratories, shops, darkrooms, and any other place where there is a danger of injury. Students are expected to follow safe practices in their class activities. Faculty and staff members should set a proper example.


The college is not equipped to provide medical services. In case of an injury requiring emergency medical treatment, call 911 and then contact Campus Police immediately. As soon as possible following a reported accident, the Campus Police will file a report with the Vice President for Finance and Administration.

The College is not liable for accidents unless the College allows unsafe conditions to exist or is negligent in supervision of its activities. When individuals are injured at any College facility or College-sponsored event, they must provide the cost of their own medical services. It is especially recommended that faculty members advise their students to review their medical insurance to determine that they have appropriate coverage if they take laboratory courses or participate in sports. The College is not liable for any medical expense unless the Commonwealth of Virginia Division of Risk Management determines that the College is negligent and directs the College to pay for medical expenses.

All employee accidents no matter how minor are to be reported to Human Resources immediately. For additional information see the Workers’ Compensation section.

Accidents in Classrooms, Laboratories, and Shops

The Chemical Hygiene Plan contains safety procedures to be followed for faculty and students working in laboratories where hazardous chemicals are used. Only those employees with proper training should attempt to administer first aid. First aid kits are located in certain offices, laboratories, shops, and the Campus Police Office.  Employees should become familiar with the location of such kits.

The faculty member must file a written report with the appropriate division dean when an accident occurs in the classroom, laboratory, or shop. These reports must be sent to the Vice President for Finance and Administration.

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