SOP Dry Ice

Standard Operating Procedure


SAFE HANDLING OF DRY ICE (With pending permission from ND)


This procedure describes methods for safely using, storing, and handling dry ice. This procedure applies to all YSU personnel whose work involves Dry Ice.


Dry ice is the solid form of carbon dioxide that is available in flakes, pellets or block form and is non‐combustible

Dry Ice will sublime (vaporize directly to the gas state) at a temperature of

‐78.5C (‐109.3F) or higher. Dry ice will sublimate about 5 to 10 pounds every 24 hours (blocks last longer) in a typical storage cooler.

Handle dry ice with appropriate insulated gloves. Using bare hands can result in burns/frostbite to the skin in a short period of time.

Use of dry ice in poorly ventilated areas can result in the depletion of the oxygen level resulting in asphyxiation.

Placing dry ice into a tightly sealed container can produce sufficient gas build up to cause an explosion.


Faculty shall ensure this procedure is implemented in their work areas and labs.

All packages containing dry ice must be shipped through the Chemical Management Center.


Dry ice is to be stored in a well‐ventilated location and placed in a Styrofoam, chest, insulated cooler, or a special cooler designed for the storage of dry ice.

Because of the thermal expansion of dry ice (one pound of dry ice produces about 250 liters of gaseous carbon dioxide), do not store in a tightly sealed container.

Do not use or store dry ice in confined areas, walk‐in refrigerators, environmental chambers or rooms without ventilation.

Dry ice baths should be open to the atmosphere to avoid pressure build up.

Storage containers require hazard communication labeling. See Appendix A for an example label.

Personnel handling dry ice shall be trained on the hazards


Safety goggles, cryogenic gloves, lab coat or lab apron must be worn when handling dry ice.


Let the unused portion sublimate (recommended for well‐ventilated areas because it will happen over several days and ventilation will take care of the gas liberation).

Never dispose of dry ice in a sink, toilet or other drain.

Never dispose of dry ice in the trash or garbage

Never leave surplus dry ice in the corridors.