Skip to content

Cleaning Up Biohazardous Spill in a Biosafety Cabinet

Cleaning up a biohazardous spill in a biosafety cabinet

  1. Let the BSC run. Do not turn off.
  2. Remove broken glass with forceps, tweezers or other tools and place glass in a sharps container.  Do not wipe up broken glass.
  3. Cover spill with paper towels.
  4. Pour (don’t spray) disinfectant to contaminated surface by pouring it around the periphery of the spill moving inward.  Allow the appropriate contact time for the disinfectant and agent.
  5. After the contact time, wipe up the spilled material.
  6. Reapply disinfectant to the affected area and after the appropriate contact time, wipe up the area. Repeat if necessary.
  7. Perform disinfection before removing items.
  8. Segregate contaminated cleanup materials into the appropriate biohazardous waste containers.

Cleaning up a biohazardous spill outside of a biosafety cabinet

  1. Close off the area and allow aerosols to settle.
  2. Notify others including supervisor.
  3. Assemble all spill cleanup materials and review procedure.
  4. Don appropriate PPE: laboratory coat, safety glasses or chemical splash goggles (depending on risk of splashes), Nitrile gloves.
  5. Cover spill with paper towels.
  6. Pour (don’t spray) disinfectant to contaminated surface by pouring it around the periphery of the spill moving inward.  Allow the appropriate contact time for the disinfectant and agent.
  7. Wipe up spill. Dispose of the waste in the biohazardous waste containers.
  8. Re-apply disinfectant to contaminated surface and allow it to stand for proper contact time.
  9. Wipe up disinfectant, repeat if necessary.
  10. Segregate contaminated cleanup materials into the appropriate biohazardous waste containers.

Cleaning up a biohazardous spill inside a centrifuge

  1. Close off the area and allow aerosols to settle.
  2. Notify others including supervisor.
  3. Wait 30 minutes to allow the aerosols to settle.
  4. Don appropriate PPE: laboratory coat, safety glasses and Nitrile gloves.
  5. Remove rotors and bucket and place in Biosafety Cabinet.
  6. Thoroughly disinfect the inside and outside of the centrifuge rotor, cups and accessories and allow proper contact time. After disinfection, move to sink for a thorough rinse, dry thoroughly.
  7. For the centrifuge interior, follow the steps above for cleaning up a spill outside a Biosafety Cabinet.
  8. Segregate contaminated cleanup materials into the appropriate biohazardous waste containers.

The flagship campus of the University of Tennessee System and partner in the Tennessee Transfer Pathway.