Even though eye injuries are seen as the threat for a long time in garages that require safety glasses, today they are minimal. When working on a vehicle there are many things that can go wrong and most of them will possibly hurt you.
Eye injuries are the most common mishap in this business since garages are always full of sparks that fly from airborne metal pieces launched from the bench grinders and from cutting torches. However, most mechanics will not rely on anything else apart from their eyelids for protection. There are people who protect their eyes by closing them when welding.
Since lots of injuries will involve eyes, the solution is very simple: mechanics should wear goggles when working in a garage. The main reason they should wear goggles throughout is that eye injuries are very hard to predict.
Why you should start protecting your eyes today
Each and every day, around 1000, injuries occur in the American workplaces. Financial costs related to these injuries are also high – around $300 million annually in medical expenses, production time and the workers compensation. No dollar figure will fully reflect the personal cost these accidents take on injured workers.
Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) and 25 other states which operate their own health and job safety programs should help minimize eye injuries. You should also take time to think about the possible eye injuries at your workplace.
What are the contributing factors of eye injuries at workplaces?
• Working without eye protection: BLS report indicates that around 60% of all eye injuries are reported on workers who do not wear eye protection during the the time of accident occurrence.
• Wearing the wrong type of protection while at the place of work: Around 40% of the injured employees are usually wearing some kind of eye protection before accident occurence. Most likely, the workers are usually wearing eye-glasses without side shields, even though injuries which occur among workers wearing flat-fold side and full cup shields.
What are the major causes of eye injuries at the workplace?
• Flying particles
BLS states that around 70% of all eye injuries result from flying particles. Other major causes of these accidents include sparks or falling objects which strike the eye. Most injured workers estimate that around 60% of the objects are usually smaller than the pin head. The objects are also usually flying faster than a hand thrown object when these accidents occur.
• Contact with chemicals
This is another common cause of injuries in garages. Injuries resulting from the contact with chemicals account for 10% of all injuries. Some other accidents may result from objects swinging from attached or fixed positions such as ropes, tree limbs, tools or chains which are pulled into the eyes while in use.
Eye accidents prevention
Protecting your eyes is a simple task and involves wearing protection when working in a garage. According to the OSHA standards, employers should offer their workers with the suitable eye protection. For any eye protection to be effective, it should be properly fitted and also be of the appropriate type for the hazard protected. A quick example: BLS survey shows that around 94% of all eye injuries to workers result from chemicals or objects going under or around the eye protector. The eye protector should also allow air circulation around the eyes and the lenses. The workers who report breakage when wearing eye protection are very few.
According to statistics, around a fifth of all people injured are usually wearing welding helmets / face shields and only 6% of the injured employees had goggles at the time of injury. Goggles offer better eye protection but to enhance the eye protection, workers should wear them with face shields.
Furthermore, employers should properly educate their workers on eye protection. BLS reports that most workers are injured while preforming their regular duties. Most workers injured without goggles say that they thought that the situation did not require them. Although most employers vanish eye protection without any extra cost to the employees, around 40% of the employees receive no proper information on either where or the type of eye protection they should wear.
The eye protection devices maintenance
As a mechanic, you should maintain your eye protection devices. And because dirty and scratched eye devices reduce vision and cause glare, you should highly avoid them since they can contribute to accidents. Over 90% of all eye injuries are preventable. Start wearing the right eyewear today to protect yourself from the injuries.