Montana State University

Guidelines for Receiving Potentially Infectious Material

  1. Verify that materials will be shipped in compliance with International Air Transport Association (IATA) and the Department of Transportation (DOT) shipping regulations for infectious materials.
  2. Obtain any required import permits and verify that the shipper has obtained any required export permits before receiving material.  For questions about permits, contact the Biosafety Officer, Jo-An Lindstrom.
  3. Familiarize yourself with the potential hazards of the material being received.
  4. Inspect all packages for damage. Click here for FBI guidelines for identifying any suspicious package
  5. Open packages in a room with the appropriate biosafety level for the material and open them in a biological safety cabinet.  Also wear the appropriate PPE (gloves, lab coat, safety glasses) normally used to handle the material.
  6. Open the outer package first and remove the secondary container.  Wipe the secondary container with an appropriate disinfectant in case the primary container leaked.  If the primary container leaked, then place all packaging into a biohazard bag and autoclave the materials prior to disposal.
  7. Report any damaged packages or missing contents to both the shipper and the carrier.