Make an inventory list of all hazardous materials and their location within the facility


It is important to have insight in the types, amounts and location of all hazardous chemicals in the laboratory. This is needed to establish the correct safety preventive measures and also gives insight in which equipment should be purchased to store the materials correctly (e.g. a fire-proof cabinet for flammable materials, a spill containment cabinet for poisonous/acidic/alkaline materials, etc.).


  • Make an inventory of the types, amounts and location of all the hazardous chemicals. This inventory will become the Hazardous Material Register.
  • For every chemical a Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS-)sheet must be collected and stored. The MSDS Sheet provides insight in all the risks of a material and the correct method of handling it.

How & who

Biosafety Officer:

  1. Make the inventory of hazardous chemicals.
  2. Collect the MSDS Sheet for each chemical (often included with a new shipment or downloadable from the website of the supplier). The MSDS Sheets provide information on the hazards/risks and necessary personal protective measures that can be used in the next step.
  3. Take a new folder and name this "MSDS Sheets". Store all the MSDS Sheets in alphabetical order in this folder.
  4. Explain in a weekly staff meeting what MSDS Sheets are, how they are used, and where they can be found.
  5. Record for each chemical the following parameters:
    • Name
    • Nr. of units
    • Type of unit (e.g. "glass-bottle")
    • Quantity per unit (volume or weight)
    • Expiry date per unit
    • Storage location
    • Hazards/risks (e.g. "flammable" or "corrosive")
    • Necessary personal protective measures
    • Availability of MSDS Sheet (yes/no)
    • Manufacturer
    • Contact details of the manufacturer
    • In the right-hand column a template of a Hazardous Material Register is provided that can be used to record the above data
  6. Take a new folder and call this "Hazardous Material Register".
  7. Keep the register up-to-date by:
    • Updating the inventory every quarter (check if all the data in the register for each material is still correct)
    • All the orders for new hazardous chemicals must go via the Biosafety Officer.

Laboratory manager:

  1. Explain to staff members that all procurement orders for hazardous materials must be notified to the Biosafety Officer so that he/she can update the Hazardous Material Register.

Back to Roadmap Activity Overview
This activity belongs to the QSE Facilities & Safety
ISO15189:2007: 5.2.9 5.2.10
ISO15189:2012: 5.2.3
ISO15190:2003: 8