Building Specific Safety Features

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(This page is under construction and not yet complete.)

Colchester Research Facility

Fume Hood Proximity Sensors

Chemical Fume Hoods located in the pre-existing UVM labs of Colchester Research Facility have proximity sensors on them. The Phoenix Controls proximity sensor is located just above the sash on the face of the hood. If the sensor recognizes movement in front of the hood, it goes into an "occupied mode" which increases the face velocity of the fume hood to approximately 100 feet per minute (fpm). If there is no activity in front of the fume hood, the sensor goes into an "unoccupied mode" which reduces the face velocity of the fume hood exhaust to approximately 80 fpm. This face velocity reduction is a basic energy saving feature.

In the renovated labs of Colchester Research Facility:

Emergency Gas Shutoff

Every lab is equipped with an “Emergency Gas Off” system. This consists of a large red mushroom switch on the wall labeled “Emergency Gas Off”. When this switch is depressed, natural gas to the lab will shut off. Only authorized personnel are permitted to reset gas flow once the “Emergency Gas Off” system has been engaged. Should you accidently push this button please contact Physical Plant at 656-2560 to have it reset.

Instances requiring use of EGO button. (Approved by John Marcus)

Button should be pushed as personnel exit the laboratory.

  1. Smell of gas in the laboratory.
  2. Fire alarm.
  3. Earthquake, storm, explosion or other event causing structural damage which might compromise gas piping system.

Fume hood use

Fume hoods installed in the renovated section of Colchester Research Facility are designed and calibrated to operate safely at a face velocity of 80 linear feet per minute. Operating sash height for these hoods is 18”s and is indicated by a marker on the sash opening. Should it be necessary to open the sash above the 18” mark do so slowly to allow the duct controls to adjust the air volume to the hood and maintain a safe working area at the face of the hood. When returning the sash to the 18” height, again do so slowly and allow the controls to stabilize (10-15 seconds) before resuming work. As with all fume hoods try to conduct your work at least 6 inches inside the sash opening.

When not in use, lower the sash to the lowest possible point. For more information on the proper use of fume hoods please go to:

Cold room emergency alarms

In each of the new cold rooms (142, 177) next to the door on the interior of the cold room is a small red push button positioned next to the door. When pushed, this button activates an audible alarm to indicate that someone is unable to exit the cold room. The button is reset by pulling it back out.

Safety showers and eyewashes testing requirements

All Safety showers are required to be tested on a weekly basis. Testing equipment is kept in the building machine room which can be accessed by contacting Russ Charron or Pat Porter. If you are unsure of how to conduct the shower test contact Chris Gebo at 656-4341. He will be glad to give instruction to anyone needing it.

Eyewash units also need to be tested on a weekly basis. Contact Barbara St. Gelais at 656-5400 for instructions.

Overhead storage of items in the Laboratory

Materials must not be stored in areas where the will interfere with sprinkler operation. This means that they must be place at least 18 inches away from any sprinkler heads.



Neutralization Tank

Delehanty is one of the few buildings on campus that has a neutralization tank for the disposal of weak acid solutions. A specific Sink Disposal Agreement has been designed by Environmental Safety and the UVM Geology Department and has been approved by the City of Burlington. Contact us for specifics as to which acids are appropriate for disposal in this system. Only lab sinks with blue plumbing below the sink lead to the neutralization tank on the first floor. No hazardous waste other than weak acids may be poured down these drains in Delehanty.

Cosmo Lab/Rm 305

Clean room/lab accessible by lab personnel only. Electronic key FOB entry. Only vestibule is accessible by non-lab emergency personnel. Arrangements can be made with Paul Bierman directly to access lab.

Jeffords Hall

Storage Limit For Flammable Liquid

There is a 5-gallon limit on the storage of flammable liquids in each Jeffords building laboratory, based on fire code restrictions for a building of this construction. For this reason, observing this limit is essential to the safety of all occupants and visitors. Always order flammable chemicals with the limit in mind.

Emergency Power backup

Red outlets have emergency power backup



Fume Hood Controls

There is a toggle switch on the wall of each lab (sometimes hidden behind appliances or other equipment) that regulates the airflow to each chemical fume hood. When the room is occupied, the toggle switch should be in the "occupied" position. To save energy, the last person leaving the lab should put the toggle switch back to the "unoccupied" position. Each fume hood also has a face velocity sensor with an alarm. This sensor monitors the velocity of air passing through the fume hood and will alarm when an unsafe condition is detected. Please do not "mute" or tape over your fume hood alarm.

Marsh Life Science

Fume Hoods

Marsh Life Science has Variable Air Volume (VAV) Hoods. This means that as the fume hood sash is lifted, an air velocity sensor within the fume hood detects the change in air velocity and the air control valves modulate so the air velocity maintains 100 feet per minute (fpm) at the face of the fume hood.

Each fume hood also has a face velocity sensor with an alarm to monitor the velocity of air passing through the fume hood. This alarm sounds when a face velocity of less than 100 fpm is detected. Please do not "mute" or tape over your fume hood alarm. If the alarm sounds consistently, please notify Physical Plant to have the hood repaired.

Light Switch

Some air velocity alarms are also interlocked with the room's light switch. In these spaces, an alarm will signal if the sash is left open and the room lights are turned off. Always close the fume hood sash and shut off the lab lights when leaving the lab.

Carrigan Wing of Marsh Life Sciences

Fume Hood Restrictions

Fume hood exhaust ducsts have heat exchangers in them. None of these fume hoods can support acid digestions. Please do not heat acids in these hoods.

Fume Hood Monitors

Some of the fume hoods have SafeAire alarms that will sound if the air passing through the hood lowers to an unsafe level for the user. The readout on the alarm is based on colors; it does not show the actual airflow in lfpm (linear ft per minute). The airflow is at a safe level when the alarm readout is in the green. As the velocity weakens, the readout warn the user with a "warning" = yellow, and then unsafe levels = red. The monitor alarms in the red.


Terrill Hall

Emergency Purge Button

Each lab in Terrill has a red emergency purge button. This button will override the ventilation set point in the lab and increase airflow that exhausts out of the lab. When the button is pushed, exhaust ventilation is commanded into a fully open position for maximum ventilation to the space. This is designed to increase ventilation in case of a chemical spill in the laboratory.

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