A one-day orientation course on “Hazardous Materials: Safe Practices and Disposal” was organised under UPE Phase-2 Scheme on August 12 at the DST auditorium of University of Hyderabad (UoH). The university Vice-Chancellor, Prof RP Sharma, inaugurated the course and stressed on the importance of adhering to precautionary measures while dealing with chemicals and other hazardous elements.
Dr K Muralidharan from the School of Chemistry was the first speaker and spoke about handling chemical waste while working in laboratories.
Prof Avery August from the Department of Microbiology and Immunology at Cornell University, USA, spoke on the topic ‘Introduction to Bio Safety’ and explained the four levels of bio safety. He also talked about the precautions that are required while handling pathogens or spillages.
Dr Sharmistha Banerjee from the School of Life Sciences continued from where Prof August ended, explaining in further detail the ways to deal with live organisms and other biohazards.
‘Radiation- Fact of Life’ was discussed by Dr R Seshadhri, Sr Manager, Jonaki, RC, BRIT, CCMB Campus, Hyderabad. A senior scientist himself, Dr Seshadri spoke about the existence of radiation in our lives as being inevitable. He pointed out the various modes through which we are exposed to radiation and ways to control and protect ourselves from it. He clarified that radiation doesn’t cause any damage when used within certain, established limits.
Prof B Senthilkumaran from School of Life Sciences demonstrated the different precautionary materials that should be used in laboratories, such as full sleeves lab coat and recommended students to wear two gloves instead of one to avoid any damage in case a spill.
Prof SVS Nageswar Rao from the School of Physics spoke on the topic ‘Some essential safety procedures to be practised in research labs at University of Hyderabad’. He insisted that as students of Science, the audience should behave differently from the general public. They should be aware of the risks involved in laboratories and learn to keep themselves from getting harmed.
The program coordinator, Prof Anand Kondapi, thanked the speakers and students for attending the program. The workshop ended with a presentation on ‘Fire Extinguisher Training’ by KVN Sastry, Retired Fire Station Officer.
– By Shaima Mansoor, Department of Communication