Keep Safety Eyewear from Being Unsafe

Workers wearing protective eyewear on the jobsite risk the eye protection fogging up and creating a safety hazard

Safety is an important aspect of the construction industry. The safety content of FCP is some of the most viewed content on our site. Employers and employees alike know the importance of working safely.

However, in many instances safety measures are ignored or not properly performed. Improper jobsite safety can result in anything from fines to injury to even workplace deaths.

When it comes to personal protection safety gear, many workers don't wear (or properly) wear what they should, often because they don't like the way it feels or fits. But even when all safety equipment is being worn, people can still run into problems. One recent example I came across is protective eyewear fogging up while working.

According to a recent industry survey conducted by Defog It anti fog, 66% of safety professionals regard fogging as a barrier to workers wearing safety eyewear.

A recent Occupational Health & Safety webinar sponsored by Nanofilm discusses the topic of fogging and how to reduce workplace eye injuries. The webinar recommends four specific checkpoints:

  • Areas where heat and humidity create high rates of moisture and condensation.  High worker exertion levels can increase the risk because the perspiration and heat created add to the likelihood of fogging.
  • Locations where there are sudden environmental changes.  Moving between heat and cold, indoors or out, can instantly "blind" a worker.
  • Anywhere closed gear, such as goggles or face shields, are worn. This protective eyewear is more likely to trap heat and moisture.  High exertion rates, heat, humidity or frequent temperature changes can worsen the problem.
  • The equipment room. If a fogging problem suddenly develops, the cause may be a change in safety eyewear features. A new type of lens material, a tighter eyewear fit or the addition of side protection may be the cause.

Other topics covered in the webinar include:

  • Overview of OSHA standards for safety eyewear and anti fog
  • The risk and cost of safety eyewear noncompliance
  • Major barriers to safety eyewear compliance
  • 7 best practices for improving workplace eye safety
  • How a safety professional performs an audit to identify barriers to compliance
  • How to prevent the #1 vision-related factor in noncompliance: fogged eyewear

If you would like to learn more about fogging issues and how to prevent them, the webinar "Clearing Off the Barriers to Protective Eyewear Compliance", is available for anyone to view from now until December 15, 2011.