The law

In the UK, the legislation that directly applies to biological agents in the workplace is the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH) Regulations 2002. The context in which biohazards could be found within a museum collection – although unlikely – does apply and is covered in the regulations as ‘incidental exposure’, which means any non-intentional exposure. Employers and employees have duties to prevent this type of exposure. COSHH does not cover situations where an employee passes an infection to another employee.

Warning symbol used to identify biohazards