Eyewear Safety in the Construction Industry
Builders and construction workers have the highest rate of eye injuries in any workforce. The National Center for Biotechnology Information found that about 20% of occupational eye injuries occur in construction. Of this group, welders, painters/glaziers, plumbers, insulators, inspectors, and electricians have a higher incidence of eye injuries.
A construction worker faces many dangers on the job and injuries can occur regularly. Personal injury, resulting from improper use of equipment or simple negligence, can range from cuts and scrapes to loss of vision, limbs, or even death. Of these injuries, the most common are eye injuries. For this reason, eye safety should be a priority, and quality safety eyewear essential. Here are some recommendations for improving eye safety in the construction industry.
Always wear safety glasses
Safety eyewear is the best defense against eye injuries and it should always be warn no matter how big or small the job. Glasses or goggles are a simple way to protect eyes from a variety of potential hazards. They are important on the job whether you are inside or outside. Protection in the workplace is an essential part of running an effective and efficient business.
Wear the correct type of protection
Quite often the wrong type of glasses leads to non-compliance, resulting in injury. Wearing safety glasses or goggles that are suitable for the job and the environment will help keep you safe on the job. The hazards in your workplace help dictate the type of safety eyewear that is best for the job. If you are working in an area that has particles, flying objects, or dust, you must at least wear safety glasses with side protection (side shields). Frames should fit comfortably close to the face without hitting your eyelashes and the overall weight of your safety eyewear should be evenly distributed between your ears and your nose. If you are working with chemicals, you must wear goggles. See what types of glasses are suitable safety glasses or goggles for your industry.
Check your glasses regularly
Safety glasses are designed to prevent injury with repeated impact and wear and tear. But, they also need to be replaced from time to time when they show signs of wear. Once there is an issue with the frame or lens of your safety eyewear your protection is compromised. Clean and check your safety glasses or goggles regularly. Look for scratches, cracks, and broken pieces and if you see anything out of place, replace your glasses or goggles immediately. Your best bet is to make sure you find safety eyewear with an anti-scratch lens and anti-fog technology. This is better for your overall vision and will help extend the life of your glasses or goggles. Fatigue, eye strain, and/or headaches are also a sign that you need to replace your safety eyewear.
Store your lenses properly
How many of us toss our glasses or goggles in a toolbox or truck? To protect your safety eyewear from scratches when not wearing them, store properly. It is best to store in a hard case or microfiber pouch made specifically for safety eyewear. Ideally, use a microfiber pouch because it doubles as a cleaning cloth for lenses. Most of the high-end, quality safety glasses or goggles come with a case.
Industry-specific glasses & OSHA requirements
It’s best to select your safety eyewear according to the nature of your task(s). There are many options available in the market—eyewear focused on just protection and stylish safety sunglasses that double as safety eyewear. If you are in charge of distributing safety glasses or goggles, be sure to include information that specifies which glasses or goggles should be used for specific jobs.
OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) has detailed guidelines for when safety glasses or goggles should be worn in the workplace. OSHA's eye and face protection standard, 29 CFR 1910.133, requires the use of eye and face protection when workers are exposed to eye or face hazards such as flying objects, molten metal, liquid chemicals, acids or caustic liquids, chemical gases or vapors, or potentially injurious light radiation.
Training in safety glasses or goggles is also a prerequisite. Most workers sustain eye injuries while doing their normal work. Workers who are injured and do not wear ANSI safety glasses usually say that they considered protection unnecessary.
Prevention & Protection
If you have ever had an eye injury, you know how painful it can be. Upon injury of any kind, seek medical attention as soon as possible. Proper treatment after an eye injury can prevent infection and loss of vision. Any doctor or industry expert will tell you that the key to maintaining good vision is prevention and protection. Make sure you always have a few extra pairs of safety glasses or goggles around so you'll never be without.
At BrandX Safety, we have a wide range of safety glasses and goggles specially designed for the construction industry. Get the job done safely in comfort and style with our safety glasses and goggles. Learn more about safety glasses and goggles.