Management of chemicals

General information

Region Östergötland and Linköping University handle a large number of different chemical products, some of them also in very large volumes. Research and education is implemented in close cooperation on Campus US where premises are shared by both organisations, and in many cases employees are also employed by both organisations. These two organisations cooperate in different isssues concerning chemical products within the SAMS Agreement.


Management of chemicals and chemical products is regulated in environmental and work environment legislation and in regulations issued by for example the Swedish Chemicals Agency, the Medical Products Agency and the Swedish Work Environment Authority. LiU and Region Östergötland must ensure that this extensive body of regulations is complied with. Poor chemical management may lead to damage to the environment or pose a potential threat to the work environment.

The REACH ordinance is legislation governing chemicals that is valid throughout the EU. “REACH” is an acronym for “Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals”. (The Swedish terms are: Registrering, utvärdering, godkännande och begränsning av kemikalier.) More information is available through a link in the menu on the right.

REACH is based on the principle that it is the manufacturers, importers and downstream users who are responsible that the substances they manufacture, release onto the market or use do not have any effects that are hazardous to health or the environment. REACH applies mainly to chemical products, i.e. substances and mixtures.


About REACH, from the Swedish Chemicals Agency

About the CLP regulation, from the Swedish Chemicals Agency

Provisions about chemical products and biotechnological organisms, KIFS 2017:7, from the Swedish Chemicals Agency (in Swedish)

Provisions Chemical hazards in the working environment, AFS 2011:19Eng, from the Swedish Work Environment Authority

The environmental code (Miljöbalken), 1998:808, from the Riksdag (in Swedish)

Regulations about operators' self control, 1998:901, from the Riksdag (in Swedish)

Regulations about chemical products and biotechnological organisams, 2008:245, from the Riksdag (in Swedish)

Regulations about sale and storage of certain volatile solvents, 1977:994, from the Riksdag (in Swedish)

Contact chemicals management coordinator

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Contact us for support for all campuses at Linköping University. Use Labsafety LiU to reach coordinators for laboratory safety, biosafety, fire safety and chemical management at LiU.

  • Linköping University

Chemicals management Region Östergötland

More about the management of chemicals

Emergency, accidents and decontamination

It is always better to prevent accidents than to deal with their effects. Premises must be adapted for management and use of chemicals, for example safe storage, protective ventilation and other protective equipment. Also please refer to information on preventive activities aimed at avoiding spills in the Safety section on this page. 

If an incident occurs, the necessary measures can be divided into three categories:

First aid for personal injury

Handling large spills/emissions

Decontamination of smaller spills/emissions

In-depth information

Risk assessment of chemical hazards

Prior to beginning any work with chemical products, a thorough evaluation must be performed to identify any hazards associated with the handling methods. This evaluation should determine whether protective measures and handling instructions are necessary. The entire handling chain, from storage to disposal, must be assessed. Additionally, emergency procedures for spills, accidents, leaks, releases, or fires must be established. This comprehensive evaluation is conducted through a risk assessment.

Key points when conducting a risk assessment for experiments, methods, and work procedures include:

  • Identifying chemical risk sources along with their hazardous properties.
  • Investigating any specific requirements or regulations that apply, such as permit requirements, special signage, training, or medical check-ups.
  • Identifying risky work procedures and activities across the entire handling chain.
  • Documenting measures that reduce identified risks.
  • Assessing the probability and consequences of potential incidents to estimate the magnitude of risks. If the risk level is high, implement additional protective measures to mitigate those risks. A risk matrix is available and should be utilized to aid in assessing these factors.
  • Ensuring the risk assessment is documented and formally approved (signed off) by the responsible manager (a manager with delegated work environment responsibilities or the equivalent).
  • Making the risk assessment readily accessible to all relevant personnel.

The risk assessment must encompass all aspects of handling, including transportation and waste management. It should also incorporate considerations such as emergency preparedness, first aid, and the potential impact on the external environment, in addition to various occupational health aspects. To comply with all legal requirements pertaining to the assessment of chemical risk sources, it is mandatory to utilize the KLARA risk assessment tool at LiU.

General Information about risk assessment

For an overview of risk assessments, detailing their purpose, execution across various work methods, classification of risks, and more, refer to the Risk assessment of lab activities under Safe laboratory environment.

Risk assessment tool in the chemical management system

Performing a risk assessment of chemical products requires thorough consideration of various factors. At Linköping University (LiU), the KLARA chemical management system's tool is utilized to facilitate this process. The risk assessment tool in KLARA offers structured support and guidance throughout the risk assessment.

Authorization is needed to access the risk assessment tool in KLARA. For questions regarding access permissions, please contact LiU’s coordinator for chemical management.

For information about the risk assessment tools available in Region Östergötland’s chemical management system, Chemgroup Pro, please consult the intranet of Region Östergötland and refer to the provided contact details on the right-hand side.

Regarding chemical products and chemical hazard sources

  • Chemical product: A chemical substance or a mixture of substances.
  • Hazardous Chemical Product: A chemical product that presents a health hazard, physical hazard, or environmental hazard as classified under the CLP Regulation (identified by hazard pictograms).
  • Chemical Hazard Source: Any chemical product or substance, or combination thereof, capable of causing ill health or accidents due to:
    • Their hazardous health properties (such as being toxic, corrosive, or allergenic).
    • Their temperature.
    • Their potential to reduce oxygen levels in the air.
    • Their ability to increase the risk of fire, explosion, or other hazardous chemical reactions.

The concept of a chemical hazard source extends to exhaust gases or other air pollutants that can cause ill health or accidents, even if they are not classified as dangerous according to the CLP Regulation. For instance, high levels of dust can adversely affect the respiratory system, making it a chemical hazard source, regardless of whether the dust composition is considered hazardous. Likewise, mold spores and chemical substances emitted by microorganisms that can trigger allergies or have toxic effects are included in the "chemical hazard source" definition.

  • Chemical Product with Unknown Properties: When handling substances with unknown properties, the precautionary principle must be applied; that is, the substance should be treated as "hazardous" until proven otherwise and managed with appropriate precautions.

Assessing the risks of handling: hazardous work procedures, activities, and risk of exposure

To ascertain when and how a chemical hazard source can be dangerous and pose risks, it is necessary to identify both the properties of the chemical hazard source that may cause ill health or accidents and the manner in which the hazard source is handled. It's also essential to recognize the risks associated with accidents, fire, or exposure to persons during the work procedures and activities that have been identified.

Examples of risky work procedures and activities when handling a chemical hazard source include:

  • Weighing a chemical product.
  • Preparing mixtures or solutions with hazardous properties.
  • Moving containers or sample materials, which carry the risk of dropping and breaking containers, or causing spills or splashes.
  • Working with materials that are extremely hot or cold.
  • Handling heavy or slippery containers or vessels.
  • Dealing with sharp objects, pressurized vessels, or gas cylinders.

When assessing the risk of exposure, factors to consider include the possibility of:

  • Harmful exposure to the hazard source through inhalation, skin contact, eye splashes, or ingestion.
  • In assessing the risk of exposure, factors to consider include:
    • The physical properties of the hazard source (e.g., if it's a dusty powder, a volatile substance, a substance easily absorbed through the skin, etc.).
    • The quantity of the chemical hazard source being handled.
    • The duration of exposure to the hazard source.
    • The location where the chemical hazard source will be handled (e.g., on an open workbench or in a fume hood).
  • It's important to note if there are specific risks associated with exposure for those who are pregnant or breastfeeding. For more information, see the section below.

Assessing handling risks: risk of accidents

When assessing the risk of accidents, fire, spills, etc., consider whether there is a possibility of:

  • Personal injury or material damage due to dangerous chemical reactions, such as reactive or material-degrading properties (gas generation, overpressure, weakening of container materials, etc.).
  • Interactions that may occur with other chemical hazard sources or materials.
  • Hazardous reactions that might develop as the chemical hazard source deteriorates over time.
  • Personal injury resulting from reduced oxygen levels in the environment (e.g., when handling inert gases like nitrogen or argon).
  • Increased risk of fire or explosion due to the physical properties of the hazard source (e.g., flammability, explosiveness, potential to undergo dangerous chemical reactions, formation of explosive peroxides, etc.).
  • Spills contaminating the external environment, such as through the sewage system (assess the risk of chemical spills entering sinks, water troughs, floor drains, etc.).

The risk assessment must also provide a plan for managing unexpected events, including spills, power outages, loss of ventilation, or fires. Each operation should have clear procedures on how to respond to fires and other emergencies. These procedures need to be specific to the activities and premises involved.

Other factors or requirements to include in risk assessment

Pregnant and nursing workers

It is crucial to review the work situation of employees during pregnancy. Part of this review should include revising or creating a new risk assessment regarding the handling of chemical hazard sources by pregnant or nursing staff, if this is not already covered in existing risk assessments.

Occupational exposure limits

When work involves chemical hazard sources with an established occupational exposure limit, an evaluation must be conducted to ensure that the concentration of air pollutants in the breathing zone is acceptable, based on the exposure limit.

Training on allergenic substances

The risk assessment must specify whether training for handling allergenic substances is necessary. In the KLARA chemical management system, training requirements are listed under the "Rules and Requirements" section on the product's presentation page.

Medical check-ups

The risk assessment must identify whether medical checks are pertinent, for instance, when working with substances like lead, cadmium, or mercury. KLARA indicates whether medical checks are required under the "Rules and Requirements" for each product.

Waste management

The risk assessment should clearly outline how different types of waste are to be handled and identify any associated risks. For comprehensive guidance on waste management, refer to the 'Waste, Hazardous Waste' section.

Additional documentation for CMR products

Additional legal requirements necessitate further written documentation for CMR products (carcinogenic, mutagenic, and reprotoxic substances or products).

Regarding risk reduction measures

Selecting the appropriate chemical product and method is key to minimizing risks. Always opt for the chemical product, hazard source, or method that presents the least risk.

Minimizing the number of people exposed is equally important. Ensure that work is conducted in a location and at a time that limits exposure to only those necessary for the work.

Additionally, it is crucial to limit exposure to the smallest amount feasible. The quantity of chemicals stored at the workplace should be as minimal as necessary.

Implement suitable protective measures, such as:

  • Technical protective measures like protective ventilation (including fume cupboards, bench ventilation, local exhaust ventilation, etc.).
  • Personal protective equipment such as protective gloves, eye protection, and respiratory protection.

Documentation and accessibility

  • Upon completion, the risk assessment must be approved (signed off) by a responsible manager (a manager with delegated work environment responsibilities or equivalent).
  • Approved risk assessments must be effectively communicated to all individuals involved and readily accessible within the operation, whether in paper form or electronically.
  • It is imperative that everyone concerned is aware of and understands the risks, regardless of their involvement in the risk assessment process. The risk assessment should be documented in Swedish and/or English, depending on the requirements of the workplace.

Selection of chemical products

Substitution of chemical products

As far as possible, the use of such chemical products that may cause risk to humans or the environment must be avoided. These must be replaced by products considered to be less dangerous. This is termed the Substitution Principle.

Substitution not only concerns replacing one chemical by another, it also means identifying alternative solutions in which chemicals are not necessary at all, for example by finding an alternative method.

Substitution work at LiU

The environmental goals are focused on four areas and take into account the environmental study performed at LiU and the national environmental quality objectives. One of the environmental areas is“ Minimize the spread of harmful and infectious substances from the activities” see more information at the page Environment and sustainability. Chemical products are addressed in one of the decided environmental goals for the period 2022-2024 “Minimise the risk of spreading hazardous substances from laboratory activities through measures taken during procurement, substitution, and use”. Measures to achieve the goals are implemented both together within LiU and locally at departments/equivalent.

The LiU work on phasing out phase-out substances is described in “Handlingsplan för utfasningsämnen vid Linköpings universitet (dnr LiU-2017-01315, in Swedish).The work means that the substitution/replacement of chemical products hazardous to the environment and health is focussed on CMR products based on the limitations of the KLARA chemical management system and synergies with an improved working environment.

As part of the work to replace/substitute chemical products that are harmful to the environment and health, a so-called phase-out survey (previously also known as a substitution survey) is sent out to within LiU every three years. The survey contains questions about how selected chemical substances or products are used and whether it is possible to replace or stop using them. Substances or products that are prioritised for substitution are those that can have harmful long-term effects on humans and/or the environment. The results of the surveys have been summarised in reports.

Substitution work at Region Östergötland
Within Region Östergötlandit is important to avoid products that contain these phase-out substances in accordance with the Swedish Chemicals Agency prioritisation guide PRIO. The substitution questionnaire is also circulated within the County Council. The substances included in this questionnaire are substances with the following characteristics: carcinogenic, mutagenic, reproduction toxic, cause disturbances to hormones, especially dangerous metals (Cd, Hg, Pb) and ozone-destructive substances.  
Support in substitution work

Information on possible replacement products is compiled by a national reference group (Nationella substitutionsgruppen), see link on the right. There are also other links on the right for support in substitution work.

Have you substituted a chemical product or method? You are more than welcome to share your suggestion with others! Send information to one of the contacts in the right-hand column.

Decrease volumes of chemical products

Anyone planning or implementing a laboratory exercise should apply a method that minimises the use of chemical products that are hazardous to humans or the environment. One simple method of reducing the use of hazardous chemical products is to carry out the exercise on a smaller scale, both as concerns research and education. The development of methods that minimise amounts of chemicals necessary is continuously underway - for example to decrease volumes by stating, in the method description, that a smaller reaction vessel is to be used such as small eppendorf tubes or microtiter plates.

Purchase and manufacture

Purchasing routines

  • With regard to substances hazardous to the environment and health, it is important to consider whether the product can be replaced by another less hazardous product or other method, the so-called Substitution principle.
  • Before purchasing new chemical products, it is important to assess the risks associated how they are intended to be used, and whether a permit or notification is required.
  • When purchasing chemicals, each organization´s purchasing procedures must be taken into account.
  • When purchasing chemical products, the local framework agreement must be followed. At LiU procured suppliers are available via Raindance.
  • If it is not possible to purchase the chemical products via a local framework agreement, a Swedish or European (EU) supplier should be chosen in the first instance.
  • If the chemical product purchased from a country outside EU/EES, this constitutes as import and the purchaser (you) are required to ensure that the product is registered in a European chemical database (the Classification and Labelling Register). Among other things, this requires the registrant (you) to classifiy the substance according to the CLP Regulation together with other information needed for registration, which makes it a time-consuming task.  
Register purchases of chemical products continously in KLARA
  • The chemical legislation requires that chemicals at LiU are listed in a chemical list for example the provision from Swedish work environmental authority “Chemical Hazards in the Working Environment” and the ordinance “Verksamhetsutövares egenkontroll”. At LiU, the chemical management system KLARA is used to list chemicals. In connection with an inspection from the Swedish Work environmental authority in the autumn of 2019, demands were also made for improved routines regarding keeping this list up to date. Because of that it´s not enough to take an inventory once a year. Therefore, LiU must also register purchases of chemicals (including gas cylinders) in KLARA continuously or no later than within 3 months. It is advisable to register the purchase in KLARA in connection with the product being delivered, as the delivery time can sometimes be long.
  • The requirement to register information about purchases in KLARA applies to all chemical products that are purchased, regardless of whether the product is already inventoried at the workplace or if it is a newly purchased product.
  • By entering information on the purchase of chemical products into KLARA continuously during the year and not only in connection with an inventory, this means that LiU chemical list can be considered updated.
  • Another reason why purchases must be registered in KLARA is that operations within LiU must be able to report the quantity of chemical products purchased on request! This is because LiU and Östergötland Region in certain cases must report the amount of chemical products consumed to the relevant authorities. Purchase information is required, to be able to calculate consumption together with information on the inventory quantity.
  • An example of recurring reporting of consumed amount concerns organic solvents (which is a variety of products such as acetonitrile, xylene, ethanol, and disinfectants). For these, the amount consumed from a large proportion of the operations within LiU must be reported annually to the Environmental Office (supervisory authority), which is time consuming. The different operations at LiU therefore must register all purchases of organic solvents in the chemical management system KLARA.

User authorization to KLARA is required for registration of purchases

To register purchases in the chemical management system KLARA, user authorization and login information are required. If you are taking inventories of chemical products at LiU, you have the correct authorization, via your login information, to register purchases for the activity to which the authorization relates. If you have been appointed to register purchases in KLARA, but do not have user authorization to KLARA, contact the chemical coordinator at LiU to have the application form for authorization sent to you. The completed form is then sent in the original, according to the instructions on the form, to the chemical coordinator.

Once you have received your authorization, you can follow the instructions, which you can find on the right side of this page, and register purchases for your business.

Manufacture of chemical products

When manufacturing chemical products which carry the duty to label, for example dilutes and reagents, that are intended for personal use, no safety datasheets need to be established if the mixture is carried out in direct connection with use or will be saved for only a brief period of time (hours/day).

If mixtures are manufactured that do not fulfil the requirements stated above then safety datasheets must be established.

End-User Declaration (EUD) or Customer´s statement

When purchasing certain chemical products, there is a requirement to fill in specific product declarations, such as end-user declarations (EUD) or customer´s statement.

Purchase requirements of certain explosives precursors

Explosives precursors which are subject to restrictions are products containing:

  • Ammonium nitrate, more than 45.7% by weight (corresponds to more than 16% by weight of nitrogen from ammonium nitrate)
  • Sodium or potassium chlorate, more than 40% by weight
  • Sodium or potassium perchlorate, more than 40% by weight
  • Nitromethane, more than 16% by weight (corresponds to more than 12% by volume in fuel for model vehicle)
  • Nitric acid, more than 3% by weight
  • Sulfuric acid, more than 15% by weight
  • Hydrogen peroxide, greater than 12% by weight

Suppliers of restricted explosives precursors must request information from the buyer to determine the category of users and keep the data for 18 months. Therefore, before a purchase a customer operations at LiU and Region Östergötland will need to fill out a so-called customer´s statement stating that the operation is a professional user, i.e., needs to use the product in its professional activities.

It is possible for an operation at LiU or Region Östergötland to sign a customer declaration, which means that verification of the purchase only needs to be carried out once a year, provided that the recipient is always the same and that the order does not change significantly from time to time.

Information that needs to be provided is:

  • Proof of identity of the person who "represents the company". At LiU, it should be the head of the division or equivalent (a person with insight into and responsibility for the operations). The proof of identity can be the passport number or the driving license number, including the name of the authority that issued the proof of ID (eg the Police Authority or the Swedish Transport Administration).
  • Company name, address, and organization number. Linköpings University, department/division name, address, corporate identity number (VAT) 202100–3096
  • The company's activities. Research and education at Linköping University
  • Use of the product. (brief description of what the product will be used for)
  • The customer´s statement must either be transferred to a letter template (at LiU there is a Word template) or receive a stamp with Linköping University's seal (or equivalent at Region Östergötland).

End-User-Declaration (EUD)

In connection with the purchase of chemical products containing substances that require authorisation (according to Annex XIV (Annex 14) to REACH), the supplier may request that activities at LiU or Region Östergötland fill in a so-called end-user declaration (EUD).

This is because the end user (the business) needs to certify that the use of the product will take place within scientific research and development (SR&D), for which there is a general exemption from the requirement for authorisation. Suppliers usually have a tick box in the end-user declaration indicating that this exemption applies.

(More information on authorisation requirements under REACH, see section Management of chemicals, Permits, reporting, limitations.)

In the supplier's end-user declaration (web page, form or document) it needs to be stated:

  • which exception the organisation is invoking (often a tick box).
  • the activity concerned, the name of the institution or equivalent to which the end-user declaration refers.
  • the organisation's logo (LiU's or Region Östergötland's), the logo is inserted in the page header or the entire text is copied to a Word template where the organisation's logo is included.

The end-user declaration is signed by a head of division or equivalent role (a person with allocated work environment tasks and/or overall responsibility at the division/equivalent).

A signed end-user declaration can be valid for several years for the specific customer number and product and can therefore be reused for future purchases of the same product for the same organisation. Therefore, it is good if the documents in the case are also registered with the organisation's registrar.

ID number for ozone depleting substances (ODS)

There are common regulation in the EU for ozone depleting substances (ODS) for laboratory and analytical work.

A summary of the so-called "essential uses" that involve the authorised use of various ozone-depleting substances can be found in the "Manual for laboratory users", this handbook and information on requirements for licensing and reporting of ODS can be found via the EU Commission's page on the ozone layer. Other uses are not authorised.

This manual also describes the database in which all laboratories using ODS must be registered in order to obtain the ID number required for the purchase of ODS.

LiU is registered on its VAT number, but each individual use and institution/department/client needs to be registered in the database.

If you have questions or need an ID number to order an ozone-depleting substance, contact the Laboratory safety coordinator

Chemical management system

Environmental and work environment legislation requires that records be kept of the chemical products handled within the organisation that may pose a risk to health and/or the environment. Read more in regulations about operators' self control (in Swedish) and in provisions Chemical hazards in the working environment.

LiU and Region Östergötland use web-based chemical management systems. A chemical management system makes it possible to register, inventory, compile and follow up information on chemical products handled in the organisations.

In addition to serving as a register of chemical products, the purpose of the chemical management system is to provide users with supporting information and tools to help them in their work with chemical products, e.g. through

  • Information on the hazards of the products, protective information, rules and requirements on the chemical products and safety data sheets from each supplier. The information is regularly updated so that any new classification or other requirements are available in the system.
  • Tools for all users to make structured risk assessments. According to the legislation, the employers have a legal responsibility to ensure that all potentially dangerous operations, in which there is a risk of ill-health or accident, are preceded by a written risk assessment.
  • Improved control of the chemical products that are handled throughout the University/Region Östergötland as central functions within the organisations can retrieve information on the inventory of volumes of, for example, products requiring a permit.
  • Improved availability of the chemicals, as it is possible to investigate whether a product already exists within the access to the chemical management system. In this way, a person can borrow a product from a colleague and reduce the purchase of seldom-used products.

Since 2023, LiU and Region Östergötland have different chemical management systems. LiU uses the chemical management system KLARA and Region Östergötland uses Chemgroup Pro.

The chemical management system KLARA - used at LiU

At LiU, staff and students can search for information on chemical products, such as classification information and safety data sheets.

To have access to information on the inventory of chemical products, inventory/registration of chemical products or to access the risk assessment tool, user access to KLARA is required. For questions about access, contact the chemical management coordinator at LiU.

Annual inventory of chemical products and continuous registration of purchases

An inventory of chemical products at LiU is carried out annually in January and February (1 January-28 February). During the inventory period, specially appointed chemical inventory staff update the inventory of chemical products in the chemical management system. Planning of how the inventory work should be carried out should be done together with the closest manager to ensure that it can be carried out safely, e.g. hazardous work alone should be avoided, and chemical inventory staff need to be able to contact someone in the event of an emergency. This means, for example, that inventory should not be carried out during evenings and weekends or if the chemical inventory staff is alone on an entire floor.

In addition to the annual inventory the organisation must also register purchases of chemical products continuously during the year. By entering information on the purchase of chemical products into KLARA continuously during the year and not only in connection with an inventory, this means that LiU chemical list can be considered updated.


New chemical inventory staff must attend an education occasion that is organised on a regular basis during the year. During the annual inventory period, several education occasions (Swedish and English) are organised for both new and existing chemical inventory staff. It is also possible for chemical inventory staff to access instructional films and written instructions via a collaboration in Teams "Instructional films for the KLARA chemical management system". To access the instructional films, contact the chemical management coordinator at LiU.

The chemical management system Chemgroup Pro - used at Region Östergötland

For information about the chemical management system chemgroup Pro, visit the intranet at Region Östergötland. For questions, contact chemical management at Region Östergötland


Requirements for packaging and containers

  • Packaging and containers must be intact, clean, and in a good state of repair. Replace any worn or damaged packaging, or lids, as needed. Ensure that packaging is securely closed when not in use.
  • All packaging and containers must be designed specifically for storing the chemical products they contain.
  • If packaging and containers are reused, all outdated labelling must be removed. The packaging should then be relabelled with the new contents. The contents of each container must be unmistakable.
  • Regulations governing packaging and storage can be found in the provisions on chemical hazards in the working environment and in the CLP Regulation. For more information.

Requirements on the storage location

  • Chemical products should be stored in cabinets or storage areas that are specifically adapted and connected to exhaust ventilation, particularly when storing products that emit odorous, health-hazardous, or inflammable vapors (typical airflow is around 10–20 l/s).
  • Liquid chemical products must be stored in bunded areas, such as in trays, tubs, or boxes, unless the storage area itself is bunded—for example, if shelves are equipped with raised edges. Bunding is necessary to contain spills, preventing them from reaching drains. The bund capacity should be sufficient for the volume of the largest container, with an additional capacity for at least ten percent of the total volume of stored chemicals.
  • For the storage of inflammable goods, fire-rated cabinets may be required.
  • Refrigerators and freezers used for storing chemical products must be designed specifically for chemical storage. It is not permissible to store chemicals in refrigerators or freezers meant for food.
  • In environments where flammable goods are stored or where there is a risk of an explosive atmosphere, spark-free or ATEX-certified refrigerators or freezers may be necessary.
  • Chemical products should not be stored in fume cupboards with open drains. Temporary storage of the day's requirements is permissible during active use if the drain is sealed or a collection tray is employed. For individual containers less than 1L, a collection tray may not be necessary. Be aware that stored items can disrupt the air circulation within the fume cupboard and may impair its protective function.
  • According to specific regulations, chemical stores and laboratories must not have open floor drains. If a floor drain is present, it must be fitted with a device that prevents leaks, such as a tight-fitting cover or a manual opening and closing mechanism.

Requirements regarding co-storage

Chemicals that could be dangerous if mixed should not be stored together (co-storage). Pay special attention to the following points:

  • Do not store acids and bases together (e.g., ammonia and hydrochloric acid can form hazardous ammonium chloride dust).
  • Avoid storing strong acids with organic substances (e.g., perchloric acid with organic materials can result in highly explosive compounds).
  • Nitric acid and alcohols should not be stored together due to the potential formation of explosive nitrate esters.
  • Strongly oxidizing substances must not be stored with oxidizable materials.
  • Ethers and other peroxide-forming substances should be kept in dark, cool conditions in airtight containers.
  • Hydrogen peroxide and ketones (like acetone) should not be stored together as they can form explosive peroxides.
  • In addition to these co-storage guidelines, specific rules also exist for how inflammable materials may be stored with other chemicals.
Storage of acids and bases

Ideally, acids and bases should be kept in separate ventilated cabinets, which should be clearly marked with the types of chemicals stored within. In situations where only one ventilated cabinet is available, and it concerns a single bottle (maximum 2.5 liters), co-storage is permissible under the following conditions:

  • Consult the safety data sheet to ensure there are no substances in the cabinet that could react dangerously with the contents of the bottle.
  • The single bottle should be placed on a separate shelf and within its own bunded area, such as a plastic tray.

Requirements for locked cabinets - preventing access by unauthorized persons

Particularly dangerous chemical products
  • Particularly dangerous chemical products must be stored in a manner that prevents unauthorized access. These products typically include those classified as acutely toxic, strongly corrosive, carcinogenic, mutagenic, reprotoxic, or having specific organotoxic properties. As such, they will bear one or several of the following hazard markings.
  • Additionally, there are specific storage requirements for inflammable goods to restrict unauthorized access.
  • Individuals who have authorized access to a location, such as cleaning staff or members of the property owner's operations organization, should not have access to particularly dangerous chemical products. This necessitates the use of locked cabinets or other secure storage solutions for these types of products.

Faropliktogram giftig  

Acute toxic

  • Acute toxicity, hazard categories 1,2,3
  • Hazard statements: H300, H310, H330, H301, H311, H331
 Faropliktogram hälsofarlig  

Carcinogenic, mutagenic, reproductive toxic

  • Carcinogenicity, Mutagenicity and Reproductive toxicity, hazard categories 1A or 1B
  • Hazard statements: H350, H340, H360
Specific organ toxic properties
  • Specific organ toxicity, single exposure, hazard category 1
  • Hazard statement:H370

 Faropliktogram frätande  

Higly corrosive

  • Skin corrosive, hazard category 1A
  • Hazard statement: H314


Particularly hazardous chemical products are those that require authorization under regulation 2008:245 on chemical products and biotechnical organisms. The stipulation that these products must be stored in a manner preventing unauthorized access is outlined in regulation KIFS 2017:7.

Especially tempting chemicals

Volatile solvents, which are likely to cause intoxication when inhaled, must be stored in a way that prevents or deters such misuse. This requirement is specified in Regulation (1977:994) on the sale and storage of certain volatile solvents, among others.

Medicines, narcotics, and similar substances must be stored securely under lock and key, with particularly stringent access control (limited only to those who require these products for their research). Often, there are also strict record-keeping requirements for these substances.

Requirements for inflammable goods

  • Inflammable liquids must not be stored alongside inflammable gases/aerosols or materials that are easily ignitable.
  • Inflammable goods required for daily use may be kept on benches during work hours, but the quantity should be minimized.
  • For additional information and requirements concerning inflammable goods, refer to the 'Handling of inflammable goods' section.


Labelling of chemical products

All containers holding chemical products or substances must be labelled with information that identifies their contents and associated risks.

The term "container" encompasses various types, including jars, bottles, bags, tanks, and even containers that are part of technical devices. This is in accordance with the Swedish Work Environment Authority's regulations on Chemical Work Environment Risks.

How Should Labelling Look?

Per the requirements of the Swedish Work Environment Authority (provisions on chemical hazards in the working environment), all chemical products used or stored at the workplace must be labelled according to one of the following two options:

Reflecting the labelling on the original packaging when the product is released onto the market, as stipulated by Regulation (EC) No 1272/2008, known as the CLP Regulation. This means the packaging must include:

  • Product identification (trade name and hazardous substances in mixtures)
  • Hazard pictograms
  • Signal word ('Danger' or 'Warning')
  • Hazard statements (which should be explicitly written out)
  • Precautionary statements (also to be written out in full)
  • Supplier's contact details
  • Volume (for consumer products)
  • UFI code (for hazardous mixtures).

The above points are elaborated in the Swedish Chemicals Agency's guidelines on the CLP Regulation and its labelling requirements.

With so-called simplified workplace labelling, the packaging must display the following information:

  • The product's name.
  • Hazard pictograms in accordance with the CLP Regulation, accompanied by explanatory text for each pictogram, such as 'flammable', 'oxidizing', or 'toxic'.
  • Information indicating if the product can:
    • Cause cancer,
    • Cause allergies,
    • Damage hereditary genetic material, or
    • Disrupt reproduction.
  • The product's CAS number for precise identification (if a CAS number is not available, provide the article number or equivalent).

Labels for chemical products can be printed using the chemical management system KLARA. For guidance on the labelling function in KLARA, contact the chemical coordinator at LiU.

Labelling of Prepared Solutions

When solutions are prepared from chemical products, their containers should be labelled following one of the two alternatives mentioned above. This ensures clarity about the contents and associated risks.

Additionally, this labelling should include the following details: concentration, pH of the solution, opening date/manufacturing date, and the name of the individual who prepared the solution.

Relabelling of Chemical Products

As of June 1, 2019, all chemical products used and stored at the workplace must be labelled in accordance with the CLP Regulation. This entails that older products with orange/black hazard symbols, as per previous legislation, must be updated to the current labelling standards. For assistance with relabelling chemical products, please contact the chemical coordinator at LiU.

Labelling of pipelines

Visible pipelines that carry hazardous chemical products are to be labelled according to the provisions of the Swedish Work Environment Authority "Chemical hazards in the working environment".

Flammable fluids

Pipelines that contain a flammable fluid with a flash point of 100 °C or lower, even if it is not classified as a hazardous chemical product according to the “Classification, Labelling and Packaging Ordinance” (the “CLP regulation”) must be labelled with the product name and an arrow showing the direction of flow. (The CLP regulation classifies as flammable only those fluids with a flash point of 60 °C or lower.).

Pressurised air and non-hazardous gases

  • The CLP regulation has a hazard class “Gas under pressure”, which applies to gases with an excess pressure of at least 200 kPa (2 bar).
  • A gas that is otherwise non-hazardous is, therefore, classified as a hazardous chemical product according to the CLP regulation, if it has an excess pressure of at least 200 kPa. The labelling requirement thus applies to pipelines for pressurised air (which are to be labelled with the hazard pictogram “Gas under pressure”).

What is a “pipeline”?

  • Examples of pipelines are permanently installed pressurised lines used to transport of gas, fluid or solids with the aid of a gas or fluid.
  • Thus, a pipeline that is principally used as part of a process is considered to be a process vessel, and is to be labelled in the same manner as a container with a hazardous chemical product.

What must the labelling contain?

  1. name of the product
  2. the hazard pictograms that are to be used for the product when it is put on the market ("sold"), as specified by the CLP regulation, and
  3. an arrow showing the direction of flow.
  • A pipeline that is used for several different products with the same hazardous properties may have the names of the products specified using a collective label.
  • The labelling is to be clearly visible and located in the vicinity of, for example, valves and connector, and at regular intervals along the pipeline.
  • A built-in pipeline is to be labelled at the openings at which it is accessible. When carrying out the risk assessment, it is determined whether it is necessary to label the built-in sections of the pipeline, such that it is possible identify unambiguously the contents of the pipeline and the risks associated with it. Labelling is to be present at hazardous locations!
  • A pipeline is to be labelled on both sides of a wall penetration.
  • In addition to this, a pipeline is to be labelled such that it is always possible to see a label when in the vicinity of the pipeline.
  • In the case of a pressurised air pipeline, it can often be assessed that there are fewer hazardous locations than is the case for a gas that is hazardous to health or flammable. It may be sufficient to label a pressurised air tube that can be seen along its entirety solely at the outlet at which the tube is connected.
  • It must be always possible to identify the contents of a pipeline. In locations to which access is so difficult that special equipment is required, however, the assessment can often be made that labelling is unnecessary.
  • It is also appropriate that pipelines are given colour labelling according to the Swedish standard SS 741 “Märkning av gas-, vätske- och ventilationsinstallationer”. Thus, the text that is to be present at the hazard pictogram is not necessary on pipelines, but there is nothing to prevent it being added.
  • More information about the labelling of pipelines and an explanation of Swedish standard SS 741 “Märkning av gas-, vätske- och ventilationsinstallationer” can be found in Swedish at the Swedish Work Environment Authority's website.

Who is to re-label?

  • It is the one who carries out operations (LiU’s operations) who is responsible for ensuring that pipelines are labelled. This is also the case when operations are carried out in a rented property.
  • LiU has in certain cases an agreement with the property owner that means that the property owner is to take care of, for example, labelling of pipelines at their source, and similar matters.
  • An employer that has not labelled pipelines that carry hazardous chemical products as described above will be liable to a sanction fee of SEK 150,000

Signage of storage areas

Chemical stores, cabinets, and similar storage areas must be marked with signage indicating chemical risks, in accordance with the Swedish Work Environment Authority's  provisions on chemical hazards in the working environment. Additional information about signage can be found on the Swedish Work Environment Authority’s website, which offers guidance on the regulation.

Why should chemical stores be signposted?

  • Signage is required when the labelling on individual containers is not visible from outside the storage area (i.e., the hazard pictograms of the various chemicals stored cannot be seen from outside).
  • Signage is also necessary when such large quantities of chemicals are stored that they have significant implications for safety, such as exacerbating a fire or posing health or environmental hazards due to leaks.

Given that most chemical storage sites at LiU meet the criteria outlined above, the requirement for signage of chemical stores, cabinets, and other storage locations applies.

How should signage look?

  • Signage for chemical risks should comply with the CLP Regulation, which includes white, black, and red hazard pictograms.
  • If a risk assessment identifies additional hazards, extra signage might be necessary. This could include warning signs for infection risk, laser radiation, radioactive substances, or signs indicating mandatory actions (like wearing safety glasses) or prohibitions (such as no smoking and open flames). For more information, refer to the Swedish Work Environment Authority's resources on signage.

How should signage be implemented?

  • Adhesive stickers can serve as appropriate signage for most chemical stores and cabinets.
  • Labels featuring hazard pictograms can be sourced from various suppliers under the Laboratory Products agreement. Use the keyword "GHS" to facilitate the search for these products.
  • Companies specializing in hazard signs, such as Systemtext, offer a range of signage options including CLP hazard pictograms.
  • For individual signage needs, consider downloading image files of hazard pictograms and printing them out on label paper, or laminate them as a cost-effective solution. The Swedish Work Environment Authority’s website provides downloadable image files for this purpose.
  • Necessary materials like labels and lamination plastic can be acquired through established purchasing system contracts.

Signage of gas cylinders

Refer to the 'Fire Precautions' section for guidelines on labelling and signposting gas cylinders.


General regulations for laboratory operations

  • Pipetting may not be carried out by mouth. There must be suitable technical equipment available.
  • In laboratories where hazardous substances are handled, food or drink may not be cooked, consumed or stored.
  • Smoking is prohibited.
  • Tobacco products including snus may not be used and cosmetics may not be applied.
  • Anyone carrying out laboratory operations must practise good levels of hand hygiene, which means, for example, washing their hands after completing their work and leaving the laboratory.
  • Jewellery should not be worn on hands as this may cause irritation to the skin and absorption of hazardous substances of left underneath.
  • Use protective equipment based on the risk assessment. By default, a laboratory coat should be used in the lab and it should be removed when leaving the lab, e.g. to go to public areas or go home. Examples of other common protective equipment in the lab are protective gloves, goggles, visors.  

Prevent emissions/spills

  • Larger-scale spills/leakage to drains and the close environment are best avoided by the application of preventative measures.
  • Vermikulite must always be available when handling chemicals if there is a risk of spillage or emission. When there is a risk of spillage, there must be written handling and health and safety instructions for cleaning and decontaminating floor, work surfaces, fume cupboards and other equipment. Instructions must be kept up-to date.
  • Equipment/material for cleaning up spillage (e.g. sufficient amounts of absorbent material) must be prepared and adapted to the chemicals in question.
  • This equipment is best located close to the exit of the chemical store. Drains that connect with the general water disposal system should be equipped with protective rings or, in specially vulnerable positions, be permanently blocked.

Special regulations for perchloric acid, picric acid and peroxide-forming substances

Perchloric acid

Concentrated perchloric acid is, in addition to the fact that it is seriously corrosive, also oxidising, which makes it inflammable and possibly explosive. Strong perchloric acid which is spilled and allowed to dry and become more concentrated poses a major risk. Perchloric acid together with organic substances increases this risk. Consequently concentrated perchloric acid may only be handled in special, ventilated fume cupboards that are not used for any other purpose. The alternative is to work outdoors.

Picric acid

Picric acid must be kept moist att all times! Great explosion risk with dry product. Dried picric acid can explode on impact or if heated rapidly.

To prevent formation of dried picric acid:

  • Note the date of purchase on the packaging to be able to ensure its age.
  • The packaging with picric acid must be stored tightly closed in a cool, dry, and well-ventilated place.
  • Co-storage should be avoided with strong oxidizing agents, strong bases, reducing substances, heavy metals, heavy metal salts, ammonia because picric acid forms explosive compounds with these substances.
  • Handle picric acid so that spillage around the opening, its threads and the lid or cap of the container is avoided (do not pour instead pipette picric acid solution), because liquid in the threads can give rise to dried picric acid.
  • The outside of the container opening and threads should be wiped with a wet cloth / paper towel after each use.
  • Avoid metal utensils such as spoons, spatulas etc.
  • Picric acid older than 2 years should be discarded if there is a risk of dried picric acid.
  • When picric acid is discarded it must be treated as hazardous waste. Contact the hazardous waste representative at the department or the laboratory safety coordinator.
  • If solid picric acid is used, it is stored under liquid in the container. Local routine is required in the lab to inspect and rotate the packaging every third month (to distribute the water around the solid picric acid) and fill up with liquid if necessary, to make sure that picric acid in solid form always is well covered with liquid.

If dried picric acid is discovered - do not touch the packaging!

If picric acid with crystals or dried product around the threads is discovered - do not touch or move the packaging! 

If picric acid is dried or if crystals or dried product is detected around the threads, the packaging should not be opened or moved. Make sure that no one touches the packaging, it must not be opened or moved. Contact the laboratory safety coordinator or the chemical management coordinator.

Additional information on picric acid
  • Picric acid in dry state can form very sensitive explosive metal compounds and forming salts with many metals (eg, lead, iron, zinc, nickel, copper) some of which are dangerously sensitive to heat, friction or impact.
  • The salts formed with ammonia, amines and molecular complexes with aromatic hydrocarbons, etc., are normally not so sensitive.
  • Contact of picric acid with concrete floors may form the friction-sensitive calcium salt.
  • Dry mixtures of picric acid and aluminum powder are inert, but the addition of water causes ignition after delay depending on the amount added.
  • Picric acid can also be dangerous by inhalation and in contact with skin depending on concentration, see safety data sheet for the product.
Ether and other peroxide-forming substances

The risk with ether is that explosive peroxides may be formed if it is exposed to sunlight or heat and/or ages. Risks of incident increases manifold if it evaporates. Chemicals that may be peroxide forming are primarily the following:

  • di-ethyl ether
  • iso-propyl ether
  • tert-butyl methyl ether
  • tetrahydro furan
  • dioxane

It is a simple task to test chemicals as concerns peroxides with the help of test sticks supplied by all the larger-scale suppliers of lab materials. Opened bottles should be tested on an annual basis and also before use. Bottles must always be kept in a dark place well away from heat sources. It is not suitable to open and test unopened bottles before use in order not to allow unnecessary oxygen in, but utilisation should be planned so that bottles are not stored longer than necessary. If it is suspected that an unopened bottle has been placed in a well-lit or heated location it must be opened and tested. Also when it begins to be very old (closing in on a decade, perhaps earlier).

Ether containing peroxides (positive test result) must be dealt with. If the result is serious (>10 mg/l) the Safety department should be contacted. For medium-level concentrations it is possible to add sodium bisulphite and then test again after a few days. If the test is then negative, this will be noted on the bottle and it can be sent for destruction. If the test still shows positive, further attempts must be made. Bottles may not be sent on if they are not free of peroxides. In extreme cases, which are very unusual, when it is possible to see a clouding or crystal formation in the bottle, let it stand and contact the Safety department. As long as no one touches the bottle, nothing will happen. Non-transparent bottles are unsuitable as it is impossible to inspect the content, and then extra care must be taken.

For answers to questions, please contact the officer responsible in each organisation, LiU - the health and safety manager and Region Östergötland – the Fire prevention controller.

Personal protective equipment

Protective clothing

For laboratory work with chemicals, a laboratory coat (or equivalent) with long sleeves must be worn.

Protective gloves

Protective gloves are made of various materials. Plastic or nitrile gloves are preferable as rubber/latex may cause risk of allergy.

Please note that disposable gloves may not be re-used but must be discarded after use.

To find out if and how long a protective glove prevents the chemical substance in question from reaching the skin - use information from the manufacturers!

Manufacturers or suppliers of protective gloves often have tables with so-called breakthrough times for different chemical products (how long it takes before a certain chemical penetrates the glove).

Eye protection

Protective glasses or a visor must be used as eye protection. Please note that contact lenses may increase the risk of injury. An eye shower and eye flushing facilities must be available.

Respiratory protection

The following breathing masks are available:

  • Sealed mouth mask with filter performance as concerns particles of both solids and liquids. Filter material is classified as P1, P2 or P3, in which P3 protects against airborne viruses and bacteria.
  • Fan-fed mask using portable fan or hose.
  • Hood with fresh air feed (fan or hose).

The fit of the mask is decisive as concerns providing the intended protection.

Please also refer to the Swedish Work Environment Authority theme page Respiratory protection.

Please note that simple face masks do not provide breathing protection, they protect samples and the surroundings against saliva splash only.

Technical protective equipment

Fume cupboards

Some chemical products are volatile and are easily emitted into the surrounding air. All volatile chemicals must be handled/stored so that emissions to air are minimised.

Working in fume cupboards is the most common method of protection against air pollution in the laboratory. Most people believe that they are fully protected. This is not so. Air disturbances and movements in air currents are caused by the person working in the fume cupboard and by draughts and activities in the premises. All movements in the neighbourhood of the cupboard sash door bring risk of leakage. Always work quietly and calmly so as not to cause air movements. Turbulent air currents are formed around the objects in the fume cupboard which can cause polluted air to be drawn out of the fume cupboard in a swirl. Consequently it is important never to load down the cupboard with unnecessary apparatus or chemicals.

The fume cupboard sash door may not be open above the stated safety height (normally 30 cm). The door must be pulled down when no-one is working there in order to minimise energy utilisation. A fume cupboard may not be used as a way of getting rid of volatile environmentally hazardous chemicals. Neither is it permitted to use fume cupboards as storage places for chemicals. Fume cupboards must be located in quiet areas of the lab.

The function of fume cupboards

If the fume cupboard is to be fully functional, air velocity at the fume cupboard working face must be 0.5 – 1 m/sec. Furthermore there must be an alarm that states when the air velocity falls below this level.

Fume extraction benches/weighing tables with fume boxes

Equipment to be used for cold work.

If the protective effect is to function, it is vital to work in the centre of the fume extraction bench surface only. Only 1/3 of the surface may be used. Sources of pollution may normally not be held more than 15-20 cm over the working surface. If a protective hood is worn (3 sided) it is possible to work a little higher up. The same requirements for freedom from unnecessary air current as for working in fume cupboards apply here.

Fume benches/ weighing table functions

This consists of a perforated surface with suction from underneath. This creates a current of clean air between the laboratory worker and the chemical compound.