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Eye Protection An Overview of What Employers Should Know. This module will cover…. The scope of the eye injury problem What contributes to eye injuries at work? What causes eye injuries at work? Where do injuries happen most often? How can eye injuries be prevented?
In 2002, there were 42,286 occupational injuries or illnesses involving the eye that resulted in days away from work in the U.S.
Number of nonfatal occupational facial injuries and illnesses involving days away from work by part of the face, 2002
Body Part Number of cases Percent of cases
Face 60,064 100.0
Eyes 42,286 70.4
Face, unspecified 4,445 7.4
Forehead 3,887 6.5
Nose, nasal cavity 3,031 5.0
Multiple face locations 2,430 4.0
Mouth 2,072 3.4
Jaw or chin 906 1.5
Cheek(s) 736 1.2
Face, other 272 0.5
NOTE: Due to rounding, components do not add to exactly 100 percent.
A link to eye injury statistics is in the links page at the end of this slide show
Take a moment to think about possible eye hazards at your workplace. A survey by the Labor Department's Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) of about 1,000 minor eye injuries revealed how and why many on-the-job accidents occur. Employee were either:
Not wearing eye protection. BLS reports that nearly three out of every five workers injured were not wearing eye protection at the time of the accident.
Wearing the wrong kind of eye protection for the job. About 40% of the injured workers were wearing some form of inadequate eye protection when the accident occurred and were injured.
A fictional account of a typical eye injury called “How Accidents Happen” can be linked to in the Links page at the end of this presentation
BLS found that almost 70% of the accidents studies resulted from flying or falling objects or sparks striking the eye. Injured workers estimated that nearly three-fifths of the objects were smaller than a pin head. Most of the particles were said to be traveling faster than a hand-thrown object when the accident occurred.
Contact with chemicals
Splashed liquids or flying chemical particles caused 20% of the injuries.
Caused by objects swinging from a fixed or attached position, like tree limbs, ropes, chains, or tools which were pulled into the eye while the worker was using them.
Potential eye hazards can be found in nearly every industry, but BLS reported that more than 40% of injuries occurred among craft workers, like mechanics, repairers, carpenters, and plumbers.
Over a third of the injured workers were equipment operators, such as assemblers, sanders, and grinding machine operators.
Laborers suffered about one-fifth of the eye injuries.
Almost half the injured workers were employed in manufacturing.
Slightly more than 20% were in construction.
Better training and education.
BLS reported that most workers were hurt while doing their regular jobs.
Workers injured while not wearing protective eye wear most often said they believed it was not required by the situation.
Even though the vast majority of employers furnished eye protection at no cost to employees, about 40% of the workers received no information on where and what kind of eyewear should be used.
Eye protection devices must be properly maintained.
Scratched and dirty devices reduce vision, cause glare and may contribute to accidents.
Always wear effective eye protection.
To be effective, eye wear must appropriate for the hazard encountered and properly fitted.
Protective eyeglasses are made with
They provide eye protection from moderate impact and particles encountered in job tasks such as:
Safety glasses are also available in prescription form for those persons who need corrective lenses.
Vinyl framed goggles of soft pliable body
design provide adequate eye protection from many
These goggles are available with
Single lens goggles provide similar protection
to spectacles and may be worn in combination with
spectacles or corrective lenses to insure protection
along with proper vision.
Welders goggles provide protection from sparking, scaling, or splashing metals and harmful light rays. Lenses are impact resistant and are available in graduated shades of filtration.
Chippers/Grinders goggles provide eye protection from flying particles. The dual protective eye cups house impact resistant clear lenses with individual cover.
These normally consist of an adjustable headgear and face shield of tinted or transparent acetate or polycarbonate materials, or wire screen.
Face shields are available in various sizes, tensile strength, impact/heat resistance and light ray filtering capacity.
Face shields will be used in operations when the entire face needs protection and should be worn to protect eyes and face against flying particles, metal sparks, and chemical/biological splash.
These shield assemblies consist of vulcanized fiber or glass fiber body, a ratchet/button type adjustable headgear or cap attachment and a filter and cover plate holder.
These shields will be provided to protect workers’ eyes and face from infrared or radiant light burns, flying sparks, metal spatter and slag chips encountered during welding, brazing, soldering, resistance welding, bare or shielded electric arc welding and oxyacetylene
welding and cutting operations.
You must require your employees to use necessary PPE on the job
PPE must be kept in safe and good condition
You must make sure your employees use appropriate eye and face protection
Links to WISHA’s guide for complying with PPE rules are in the links page at the end of this slide show
You must require your employees to use necessary PPE on the job.
Make sure all PPE is safe for the work to be performed. It must:
- Be durable.
- Fit snugly.
- Not interfere with the employee’s movements.
Make sure PPE is used and maintained in a clean and reliable condition.
Make sure if employees provide their own PPE, that it is adequate for the workplace hazards, and maintained in a clean and reliable condition.
Make sure that employees exposed to hazards that could injure their eyes and/or face use appropriate protection. Examples of these hazards include:
- Flying particles.
- Molten metal.
- Liquid chemicals.
- Acids or caustic liquids.
- Chemical gases or vapors.
- Any light that could injure the eyes such as lasers, ultraviolet, or infrared light.
Make sure employees exposed to hazards from flying objects have eye protection with side protection, such as safety glasses with clip-on or slide-on side shields.
WISHA Core Rules PPE
Eye injury statistics
“How Accidents Happen”
A Guide to complying with WISHA’s PPE Rules