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Safety Rules

You must be sure to carry out all your experiments safely. Take all sensible precautions and ask for adult help if you are unsure how to proceed safely. Observe any written warnings on the substances you use. The use of safety glasses is always advisable when working with chemicals or mechanical apparatus.

Projects will be scrutinized on the day of the Fair for compliance with the rules, and may be disabled or even rejected due to violations. If you have any doubts about the safety of apparatus or chemicals, or the treatment of live animals, please email the Science Fair Committee well in advance of the Fair.

1. Hazardous materials

You MUST NOT bring:

  • explosive, flammable, corrosive or highly poisonous substances,
  • armed rockets or their propellants,
  • cylinders or compressed gases,
  • dry ice, or
  • gasoline, diesel or propane powered engines of any kind, unless disabled for display only and empty of fuel

into the exhibit area.

All other substances must be shielded in such a way that maximum protection is provided for spectators, neighboring exhibits and yourself.

Microbiological samples in petri dishes should be sealed and not open. Fumes from the old cultures can be harmful when exposed.

All sample medicines, such as Advil or Tylenol or cold medicines, need to be displayed safely. Any containers should be sealed so that small members of the public cannot accidentally ingest them.

If you intend to bring ANY chemicals at all to the Fair, you must indicate this when you register your project online and provide a list of the chemicals you are bringing.

2. Glassware

All chemical glassware should be secured in a stable manner. Use plastic lab equipment if available. Glass display panels may not be used.

3. Mechanized Assemblies

All moving parts of machines must have adequate protective covering, guards, or shields to preclude physical injury.

4. Fire Hazards

Open flames, torches or burners are not to be used. Electrical heating units must be well protected and must not be near the front of the exhibit.

5. Electrical Safety

Any electrical circuit can be dangerous and should be constructed with obvious attention to safety. Even circuits with low voltages (below 24 volts) can be dangerous under certain conditions, and should be evaluated for safety.

For example, an automobile storage battery is only a 12 volt source, but can deliver hundreds of amperes of current, which can result in serious burns if conductors are not properly insulated or provided with proper electrical loads.

All electrical apparatus with DC or AC voltages over 24 volts must be constructed with sufficient insulation of all conductors to preclude any chance of hazardous short circuits, electric shocks, or otherwise dangerous effects.

120 volt AC power must conform to the standard safety laws for power line voltages as specified by the National Electrical Code and the Underwriters laboratories. Most important, power must be accessed through a three-prong electric plug that effectively grounds all exposed metallic structures in the exhibit to the building safety ground. Extension cords must also have three wires connected to three-prong plugs and sockets to assure a continuous ground path through the cord.

If you intend to use any electrical circuit (wall outlet or battery powered), you must indicate this when you register your project. Projects requiring wall outlets are assigned to tables by walls with electrical plugs - for safety reasons, extension cords may not be run across aisles.

6. Live Animal Care and Safety

NO LIVE ANIMALS may be brought to the Fair.  Please use photographs on your display boards.

Live animals in projects should, in all cases, be treated humanely and subjected to minimal stress. No project involving mistreated, injured, sick or dead animals will be allowed to exhibit at the Fair.