Eye injuries are one of the most common workplace incidents across all industries.
Workers need to protect their eyes from a variety of dangers such as:
- flying dust, dirt, or sand particles
- slivers of metal, wood, or glass
- fragments of concrete or rock
- chemicals, sparks, UV light and lasers
Proper eye safety precautions should be reviewed during training and safety meetings.
OSHA Construction Standard 1926.28(a) The employer is responsible for requiring the wearing of appropriate personal protective equipment in all operations where there is an exposure to hazardous conditions or where this part indicates the need for using such equipment to reduce the hazards to the employees.
Impact injuries are those that result from flying or falling objects, or sparks striking the eye.
Impact hazards can be created by grinding or cutting tools such as handheld grinders, saws, and similar tools.
Workers must always use safety glasses or goggles designed for the task.
OSHA General Industry Standard 1910.133(a)(1) The employer shall ensure that each affected employee uses appropriate eye or face protection when exposed to eye or face hazards from flying particles, molten metal, liquid chemicals, acids or caustic liquids, chemical gases or vapors, or potentially injurious light radiation.
Heat injuries may occur to the eye and face when workers are exposed to high temperatures, splashes of molten metal, or hot sparks.
Eye protection for these hazards are safety spectacles with special-purpose lenses and side shields or goggles.
OSHA General Industry Standard 1910.132(d)(1) The employer shall assess the workplace to determine if hazards are present, or are likely to be present, which necessitate the use of personal protective equipment (PPE).
Chemical injuries often result from a failure to use the required PPE.
Without the use of proper PPE, a chemical substance can enter the eyes directly or from around or under protective eye equipment.
Eye protection for these hazards are goggles, face shields and eyewash stations.
OSHA Construction Standard 1926.28(a)(1) Employees shall be provided with eye and face protection equipment when machines or operations present potential eye or face injury from physical, chemical, or radiation agents.
Safety glasses must be rated ANSI Z87.1.
Prescription lenses must also be rated ANSI Z87.1 or safety glasses will be required to be worn OVER prescription glasses.