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Issues of health and safety are important in the context of any sort of experimental research. In the past, researchers and their supervisors have demonstrated a cavalier attitude towards these issues, which is inconsistent with current legal and ethical standards.
It is essential that all researchers have training that prepares them for the hazards and possible emergencies that they may encounter in the course of their work, that all laws and regulations relating to safety are adhered to, and that best practices be employed when there are hazards. This means that there should be compliance with all accepted safety standards.
Researchers also have an obligation to carry out their work in a manner that does not threaten the health and safety of others, and to be forthcoming in identifying new risks and to be rapid in their response to hazardous conditions and emergencies that may arise. Health and safety standards are usually rigorously followed in large laboratory settings. It is important to recognize that they must be followed even in the most modest of research settings.
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