Laboratory Hurricane Preparedness Checklist
Preparing your work area for a possible campus closure.

Hard at work in the lab of Chemistry Department Chair Matthew Disney, Ph.D.

Depending on the forecast severity of an impending tropical storm or hurricane event, the institute’s emergency management committee may close the campus to all but designated personnel. In advance of this process, laboratories would be asked to cease non-essential research experiments, store and secure critical data and documents, and prepare their laboratories. To see a copy of the institute’s Tropical Weather Plan, please contact EHS.

Laboratory checklist

Laboratory Prep

Close and secure all chemical, biological, and radiological containers and waste.

Contact EHS to remove lab waste.

Move all chemicals to appropriate storage locations:

  • Store water-reactive chemicals in tightly sealed, waterproof containers.
  • Place flammable materials in approved flammable cabinets.
  • Remove chemicals from upper shelves and limit storage on bench tops.
  • Move all chemicals away from exterior windows.

Close fume hood sashes.

Ensure all cylinders are secure. Cap “non-critical” gas cylinders.


Cover and secure or seal vulnerable equipment with plastic.

Unplug all non-essential equipment (e.g., hotplates, magnetic stirrers, heat mantles.)

Use surge protectors to protect sensitive equipment.

Shut down computers and unplug them if not connected to a UPS.

Ensure that all bench-mounted gas fixtures are in the off position.


Ensure everyone is registered with UF Alert ( to receive critical  campus notifications. (GatorLink login required.)

Update and distribute emergency contact information to laboratory personnel.

Maintain emergency call list information on essential laboratory equipment.

Avoid blocking exits and hallways, access to electrical panels and emergency equipment.

For assistance or additional information, please contact EH&S.

(Last updated: 08/22/2023)