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It only takes a sliver of metal, particle of dust or a splash of chemical to cause significant and permanent eye damage, and there are more than 700,000 work-related eye injuries every year. Eye wellness is important all year round, and it’s a good reminder every March as Workplace Eye Wellness Month to revisit eye protection in the workplace.

Here are some injury prevention tips to keep your employees’ eyes safe and healthy when it comes to the workplace:
• Make eye safety a part of your employee training and new hire orientation
• Conduct regular vision testing, as uncorrected vision does cause accidents
• Establish a mandatory eye protection program in all operation areas
• Do regular inspections of plant operations, work areas, access routes and equipment, and study injury patterns to see where accidents are occurring – and take steps to mitigate those accidents
• Select protective eyewear based on specific duties or hazards – and make sure managers and executives are setting the example by wearing them wherever it’s supposed to be worn by employees
• Establish first-aid protocol and procedures for eye injuries – making sure you have eyewash stations available, especially where chemicals are in use

OSHA’s eye and face protections standard states “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.” Workplace Safety is here to help you keep your employees safe, so contact us with any questions or needs – 317-253-9737. We look forward to serving you.


It only takes a tiny sliver of metal, particle of dust or a splash of chemical to cause significant and permanent eye damage, according to the National Safety Council. Every March is Workplace Eye Wellness Month, and it is a good time to remind your employees of eye safety tips.

More than 700,000 work-related eye injuries occur every year – and that isn’t even taken into account the eye strains caused by too much computer screen time. When thinking about on-the-job eye injuries from metal, dust or chemicals, here are some injury-prevention tips to keep in mind:
• Study injury patterns to see where accidents are occurring, looking at plant operations, work areas, access routes and equipment. Notice any patterns? Take action if you do!
• Conduct regular vision testing for your employees
• Select the correct protective eyewear, depending on the specific tasks or hazards
• Establish and enforce a mandatory eye protection program in all operation areas
• Establish first-aid procedures for eye injuries, and make sure there are eyewash stations available nearby, especially where chemicals are in use
• Include eye safety as part of your employee orientation and ongoing training and regularly review and revise policies to stay with the times and equipment changes
• Display a copy of the policies where all employees can see them
• Set the example by having all managers and supervisors wearing protective eyewear when expected of employees

Workplace eye hazards don’t disappear just because you might not be around machinery where metal slivers or chemicals might play a role. Many employees are dealing with eye strain when it comes to spending so many hours in the day staring at computer screens or mobile phone screens. Prolonged exposure can lead to digital eye strain, dry and irritated eyes, blurred vision, eye fatigue, neck and back pain, and headaches. Biggest rule for these employees is the 20-20-20 rule – every 20 minutes, make sure to look at something 20 feet away for about 20 seconds. Educating your employees on this rule can help decrease digital eye strain and maintain better eye health.

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More than 2000 people suffer from eye injuries while at work every single day, and one in ten injuries may result in one or more missed days of work. The importance of workplace eye safety is something that should be discussed regularly, so make sure your employees understand ways to keep their eyes safe while at work.

Manual labor is the most common profession for eye injuries, which include steel workers, carpenters, welders, and painters, to name a few. These professions are dealing with flying objects, chemicals and tools that raise the risk of particles entering the eye. Having proper eye protection can help keep you from being the 10-20% of those injuries that result in permanent vision loss:

  • Safety Glasses – used for light duty work as they protect your eyes from the front and sides against foreign objects
  • Goggles – provide complete coverage of the eyes and seal to your face, so more effective against chemical splashes, sprays, and sand blasting than safety glasses
  • Face Shields – these provide coverage to your entire face and should be worn when cutting tools are used as they protect from sparks or when large pieces of debris can be thrown from power tools
  • Full-face Respirators – these are the best solution when fumes, vapors or gasses are present as they prevent damage to your eyes and face, while using a spray gun in an enclosed area or mixing chemicals

Working in an office can be quite hazardous to your eyes as well, but in a different sense. The most common eye problem is Computer Vision Syndrome, which does not cause permanent damage to your vision, but it makes your eyes feel irritated and fatigued. Too much screen time and not enough breaks can cause such things as headaches, neck pain, back strain, and dry eye – and remember, screen time isn’t just the computer, but cell phones and televisions as well. Just taking these steps can help alleviate symptoms:

  • Reposition your screen – adjust your screen, so it’s angled away from any direct light source
  • Invest in an anti-glare screen and computer glasses
  • Keep in mind the 20-20-20 rule – for every 20 minutes, look at an object at least 20 feet for at least 20 seconds
  • Don’t forget to blink – this will keep your eyes from drying out
  • Use artificial tears – helps keep your eyes comfortable and prevents dryness
  • Drink water – air can be dry in the office, especially in the winter months, so drink up!
  • Get to the eye doctor regularly and have an eye exam

Knowing what the eye safety dangers are and eliminating hazards will keep your employees from becoming eye injury statistics.

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