Each day about 2,000 U.S. workers have a job related eye injury that requires medical treatment. In construction, eye hazards exist for workers no matter where they work.
Some common operations that present eye hazards may include:
- Grinding, hammering, polishing, chiseling, wood working, cutting, any other activity that might cause large fragments or small particles to fly through the air and into the eyes.
- Painting, spraying, sanding, metal working, blowing, or any process that may cause dust, debris, or tiny particulate to become airborne.
- Work tasks such as welding and cutting with a torch or operations around radiant energy or intense heat.
- Operations such as handling acids and caustics, or where gases, vapors, or liquids are generated.
- Any type of work done over your head.
- Light emitted from lasers used in construction.
Many of these operations expose not only the employee performing the job, but also employees that may be working nearby. Fortunately, you can protect against these hazards by using the appropriate protective eyewear. If your job presents an exposure to eye hazards, wear eye protection gear meeting ANSI Z87.1 requirements for impact and penetration resistance. Select equipment that provides the best defense. Safety glasses should have side shields and if possible upper and lower shields. Face shields and goggles can provide even better protection for some operations.
What to do if you get something in your eye?
Don’t rub it! Rinse with clean water and get medical attention. Remember your eyesight is a precious gift, don’t take chances. Always wear eye protection! Don’t rub it! Rinse with clean water and get immediate medical attention.