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Managing the risks - general controls

All work with animals should take place within a BSU unless specialised equipment or facilities, not otherwise available in the BSU, are required.

Work carried out outside of BSUs must only take place in a Departmental registered room.  Requests for new rooms must be made to the local BSU Manager; their suitability will be assessed by BSU staff and Safety Services before seeking Home Office approval for registration.  Existing registered rooms are listed in the Home Office Establishment licence; a copy of which is usually held locally by BSU managers.

The following good occupational safety and hygiene measures should be used for all work with animals, whatever the location of the work

  • No eating, drinking, taking of medication, application of cosmetics or write-up (other than the taking of brief notes, or recording of data as required by the BSU or by the ASPA) is allowed in areas where animals are housed or handled.

  • Cuts, grazes and any other abrasions on hands should be covered with a waterproof dressing before starting work.

  • Rings, bracelets and watches should not be worn as they may harbour allergens or skin irritants.

  • Any spillages of animal body fluids should be cleaned up immediately using an appropriate disinfectant.

  • Hands should be washed after any physical contact with animals or equipment and also after removal of protective clothing when leaving the animal facility/room.

  • If not disposed of after use, personal protective equipment including respiratory protective equipment must be stored such that it does not contaminate non-contaminated clothing and equipment


All those undertaking work with animals must undertake the following training before starting work:

  • Appropriate Home Office licence training

  • Online e-learning module on health and safety in animal facilities

In addition, a local induction will be given of the Unit or room where work is to be carried out.



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