Appropriate hazard specific eye protection shall be provided for all people where a risk of eye injury exists.
Typical hazards might include flying particles, dust, splashing substances, harmful gases, vapours, aerosols, and high intensity radiation from welding operations, lasers, transilluminators and strong heat sources.
Consideration must be given to the need for protecting people who are working nearby or passing close to hazardous areas. It is essential that the maximum degree of eye protection is provided.
Tables 4.1 and 4.2 of AS/NZS 1336 provide guidance on selection of eye protection
The following should be considered:
The following general eye protectors are available:
Processes requiring moderate reduction of visible radiation and protection from ultraviolet and infrared radiation:
Processes requiring considerable reduction of visible radiation and protection from ultraviolet and infrared radiation:
See AS/NZS 1338.1
Where a welder is likely to be exposed to stray radiation from similar nearby processes, it is essential that the person be protected while the helmet or handshield is not in use. This can be achieved by wearing either goggles or safety spectacles assembled with glass or plastic lenses of appropriate thickness and incorporating opaque sideshields. These eye protectors will also offer protection during the removal of slag after welding.
Any person who is required to remain in the vicinity of welding operations shall be protected against the possible harmful effects of ultraviolet and infrared radiation and, in addition, should be protected against excessive visible radiation. See AS/NZS 1338.1 Table A2.
People (other than welders and welders' assistants) whose duties require them to remain in the vicinity of arc welding operations or to pass through areas in which such operations are carried out should be protected against the possible dangerous effects of erythemal ultraviolet radiation. (See AS/NZS 1338).
Arc welding and similar operations should be carried out in screened enclosures. Where this is not possible, the use of mobile screens is recommended to shield other persons from stray radiation. Galvanised sheeting used for screening or other materials, which have relatively large reflective surfaces should be painted or treated with some form of light-absorbing substance.
Arrangements should be made for the issuing of personal eye protectors to ensure:
Eye protectors may be issued for:
The choice between issue for exclusive use by one employee and temporary issue to different employees or students will depend on the frequency and duration of exposure to hazards and the type of eye protector provided.
When necessary, suitable anti-fogging compound should be made available for use with eye protectors. Sweat bands may be necessary for extreme conditions. Anti-fog type goggles are readily available.
Measures should be taken to ensure proper maintenance of eye protectors. These measures include:
The manufacturer's instructions for the cleaning of eye protectors should be followed. In the absence of such instructions wash the eye protector thoroughly with non-abrasive soap or detergent and warm water using a soft cloth, then rinse and dry. Avoid using any substance likely to scratch the surface of the lenses. Suitable tissues in wall-mounted dispensers should be available for lens cleaning.
Eye protectors and lenses should be replaced when usage, accidental damage or age has resulted in deterioration of the properties of the eye protectors to a stage where continued use could be hazardous, or where the eye protectors no longer comply with the relevant standard. In particular, lenses which have been scratched, abraded, pitted or otherwise damaged should be replaced because the protection they offer may be reduced and vision impaired.
Guidance is available in: