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Chemicals are found everywhere. Most chemicals pose little threat to people, animals and the environment most of the time. However, if used or released improperly there can be extremely detrimental impacts to personal health and the environment.

Hazards can occur during production, storage, transportation, use or disposal.

Recognizing that a hazardous material spill or release has occurred and notifying the appropriate authorities is the most important step to safety. The response will differ based upon the type of chemical, quantity and location. The most important thing is to avoid the area and contact emergency personnel.


General Action Steps:

  • Unless trained to do so, do not attempt to clean the spill or stop the leak yourself.
  • Evacuate the immediate area, as necessary.
  • Notify HPU Security and provide as much information as possible:
    • Where did the incident occur?
    • What do you see and smell?
    • Is the leak inside or outside?
    • Is anyone injured?
    • Is the leak fast or slow?
    • What type of chemical is it?
    • Is smoke or fire present?
  • Follow all instructions from emergency personnel.
  • Wait in a safe location away from the scene of the incident. Do not reenter the area until instructed by emergency personnel that it is safe to do so.

How to Read a Hazardous Materials Placard: