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Office of Risk Management

Environmental Health & Safety

Transporting Biohazardous Materials

Biohazardous material must be properly contained during transport throughout campus.  The containment requirements depend on the transportation method.

Inter-building Transport BY HAND

When carrying biohazardous material by hand, the specimen must be enclosed in primary and secondary containment, according to the guidelines below.

Specimen container

  • Place the biohazardous material in a primary specimen container secured with a tight-fitting cap, Parafilm, or tape.
  • Make sure the container is labeled with the identity of the contents.

Secondary container

  • Place the primary container in a secondary container with absorbent materials to prevent breakage and absorb any leaks or spills.
  • The secondary container must be labeled with the biohazard symbol.


Inter-building Transport BY VEHICLE

When carrying biohazardous material in a vehicle, you must enclose your specimen in primary and secondary containment as described above, AND place your specimen in a third outer container.

Outer container

  • The outer container must be sturdy enough to remain closed and contain the specimen(s) if dropped.  A rigid container with a secure lid is best.
  • Include absorbent materials to prevent breakage and absorb any leaks or spills, if necessary.
  • The outer container must be labeled with the biohazard symbol.


Other Guidelines

  • Do not carry biohazardous material on public transportation, like shuttles and buses.
  • Transport by bicycle or scooter is discouraged.
  • Do not wear gloves while transporting biohazardous materials between buildings.
  • Do not leave the package unattended.
  • You should be prepared to clean any spills or leaks and have the means to call for assistance if necessary.
Reminder: These guidelines apply to transportion of biohazardous materials ON CAMPUS. If you need to SHIP biohazardous materials, separate rules apply. Contact EHS for more information.