Each day it is estimated that approximately 2,000 eye-related injuries occur in the workplace nationwide. There is a considerable financial cost related to this statistic, with more than 300 million dollars each year lost in production time, workers compensation and medical expenses. Any worker that has experienced an eye injury is well aware that any amount of money cannot compensate for the loss they have sustained from an eye injury on the job. Not wearing eye protection is the most common cause of eye injuries.
Fortunately, Farm Bureau members have a discount program with Grainger, one of their member benefit providers.
When you think of safety, think Grainger for products, services and resources to help keep employees safe and healthy. Most reported eye injuries occur from flying particles and objects. The second most common eye injuries are a result of accidents from chemical splash.
It is not uncommon for workers to use their safety glasses to protect from impact of flying particles and objects. However, workers that use the same type of protection for chemical splash or for protection from vapors, have a false sense of security and are not protected. When the hazard assessment calls for protection from chemical splash or chemical vapor, goggles should be selected. Safety glasses are not effective protection from chemical splash and vapors.
Eyewear should provide appropriate protection from job-specific hazards, fit snug to the wearers face without inhibiting movement or vision, be comfortable to wear, durable and easy to clean or sanitize.
Goggles are designed for protection from specific hazards. Goggles protect eyes and the facial area immediately surrounding the eyes. Goggles provide more protection than safety glasses from impact, dust, liquid splash, optical radiation and high heat hazards. There are three different types of goggles available, direct ventilation, indirect ventilation, and non-vented safety goggles.
Safety Goggles: Types and Uses
Direct vented goggles allow a direct flow of air from the work environment into the goggle. In cases where impact is the hazard and a splash or vapor hazard does not exist then a direct vented goggle can be used as an appropriate level of protection.
Indirect vented goggles provide protection from splash entry by a hooded or covered vent that allows the free movement of air but prevents the direct passage of liquid. The purpose of the indirect venting is to limit or prevent the passage of liquid splash into the goggle. In cases where chemical splash is a hazard, indirect vent goggles should be selected as appropriate protection.
Non-vented goggles have no venting of any kind and offer protection against the passage of dust, mist, liquid and vapors. For applications where chemical vapor* is the hazard a non-vented goggle will be required protection.
*Non-vented goggles are NOT gas-proof goggles in instances where gas-proof goggles are required to be worn, non-vented goggles will not provide adequate protection.
Employers can protect their employees from eye injuries in the workplace by knowing how to identify workplace hazards. They can then determine when, where and what type of eye protection is required for a given workplace task.
Editor's note: For more information on our member benefits including our regional benefits go to Arizona Farm Bureau's member benefits page online. Or, download the Member Benefits app (FB Benefits) to your smartphone for easy, everyday access to your benefits.