Lab Decommissioning

Lab Equipment Decontamination Protocol

  1. Departments must identify equipment desired for release by creating a list for Equipment Management (contact: betshelp@berkeley.edu).
  2. Department equipment listings must provide a BETS #, Serial #, building and room number of the equipment intended for release. Departments must also include: equipment history, associated chemical use, biological use or radiation use authorizations - where applicable.
  3. Verify and update equipment building, room and description to match BETS records.

Departments must provide a complete list to Equipment Management.

  1. Ensure the correct room numbers, location descriptions, equipment type, model numbers, serial numbers are accurate.
  1. Departments have three options for releasing unwanted equipment:
    1. Give away or sharing with other labs, colleagues, departments – may require updating licenses or authorizations.
    2. Releasing to Surplus for resale – requires decontamination by lab/researcher or EH&S selected contractor.
    3. Disposal and/or recycling – hazardous waste or decontamination charges may apply.

Each of these options will require documentation with the EH&S' Facilities/Equipment Decontamination Clearance Certification.

  1. EH&S must evaluate all equipment for potential hazards, chemical residues and proper decontamination needs.  EH&S must also identify if chemical use/history, BUAs or RUAs are applicable.
  2. If selected equipment is intended for resale or disposal, any associated licenses/authorizations and asset numbers should be properly closed (BETS, RUAs, BUAs, LUAs, etc.). Lab and shop equipment must be cleared and labeled by EH&S before it can be released from campus.
  3. Equipment Management verifies clearance of the listed items with Surplus, Moving Services, EH&S and department representatives prior to final removal.
  4. Surplus is not allowed to pick-up or collect lab equipment that does not have the EH&S certification form and decontamination labels attached to the equipment. See example below:

 EHS Decontamination Record

Examples of Lab Equipment Requiring Decontamination Certification by EH&S:

  • Analytical instrumentation

  • Benchtops or counters

  • Biosafety cabinets

  • Centrifuges

  • Chemical storage cabinets/shelves

  • Fumehoods

  • Glassware

  • Gloveboxes

Demolition Process Overview and Waste Handling

Preliminary Planning

Step 1 Contact Facilities Facilities will survey building for hazardous components within building construction surfaces:
Asbestos, Lead, Insulation, Drywall, Caulking, Flooring, Light Ballasts/Tubes, Thermostats, Exit Signs, Etc.
Contact EH&S EH&S will assist in evaluating building history and potential for Radioactivity, Biological Use, Mercury, Chemical Residues:
Soils, Ventilation, Hydraulic Systems, Vacuums,Transformers, Oil-filled Equipment, Etc.
Step 2 Complete Building/Work Hazard Assessment with EH&S EH&S completes a checklist for Project Managers based on conceptual scope of work. EH&S summarizes potential hazards for PM and contractor notification.
Step 3 Identify Hazards with contractor Use EH&S Hazard Assessment Checklist and relative specifications.
Identify Operation Controls Communicate contractor expectations based on Hazards and Environmental impacts: SWPPP, Dust Control, Traffic Controls, Protective Equipment, Secondary Containment, Spill Kits, Etc.

During the Course of Abatement/Renovation

Hazardous Waste Signatures and Disposal
Facilities – Asbestos Control Office Facilities can only sign for select hazardous wastes such as lead and asbestos contamination, and non-hazardous wastes.
EH&S EH&S will need to sign all other hazardous waste manifests and ‘Special Wastes’ profiles, including soil, petroleum/oils, all lab or shop wastes, PCBs, Mercury, along with lead and asbestos.

FAQs

What should I know if workers or contractors are modifying or remodeling my space?

Proper evaluation of materials to be disturbed should be conducted by EH&S. Many hazards exist within building materials themselves or may be impacted with chemical or biological residue, depending on the space history, and must be disclosed to all workers who may disturb or work in the space.

Plumbing and piping also have a high potential for chemical residue, especially mercury.  It is pertinent that EH&S assist in the evaluation of spaces before remodeling or utility work occurs.

How do I get furniture, equipment or lab instrumentation moved?

Some equipment and instruments require the manufacturer or vendor to disconnect and reconnect equipment along with potentially moving the equipment.

Furniture and some shop or lab equipment can be moved by the campus’ professional moving service.

How are chemicals relocated or disposed during decommissioning?

Chemicals will have to be moved or removed by a qualified contractor managed by EH&S. It’s possible that EH&S can help move small amounts of chemicals, but will have to be determined.

Chemical transportation is regulated by US Department of Transportation standards and must never be conducted with personal vehicles or department/campus vehicles.

Chemical disposal requires EH&S signatures. Signing disposal manifests by unapproved personnel is a legal violation resulting in citations from the California Environmental Protection Agency.

How do I properly clean a lab or shop for deactivation?

Lab and shop deactivation is dependent on the history of work or research conducted in the space.

Chemical decontamination of spaces and equipment may be done by the following personnel:

My lab or shop is moving, what I do I need to do in order to properly vacate?

Contact EH&S as soon as possible for planning to vacate a laboratory or shop space. Vacating technical workspaces may require furniture, equipment, and chemical moves along with cleaning and chemical inventory updates.

In general, equipment and items for relocation need to be free of contamination before moving, giving to Excess or discarding. Laboratories, shops, etc. also need to be cleaned prior to re-occupancy.

Also see:

EH&S' Facilities/Equipment Decontamination Clearance Certification