Community Forum – Do you have contact lens restrictions?
UOP is reviewing their HSE practices and is considering whether to eliminate a historical restriction of prohibiting contact lens usage that still exists in some of their locations. We are interested in learning whether contact lenses may be worn within your organization in laboratories or operating areas.
2. What considerations has your organization taken into account when setting a contact lens usage policy?
- We look to control materials/fumes at levels below where they would be an issue for contact lens. Standard protection for dust areas to protect eyes is sufficient for contacts. All fume and dust concentrations are managed using engineering controls.
- If individuals need prescription lenses, we pay for prescription safety glasses.
- Contact Lenses (CL) – Complete a PPE assessment to determine if CLs are acceptable 1. Liquid chemicals/biologicals or fine dusts/solid material may get caught between the lens and the eye surfaces, resulting in damage to the eye/cornea or infection 2. In most cases, CLs are allowed under specific medical needs or on a case by case basis by area supervisor and EH&S department personnel 3. Prescription safety glasses are preferred level of eye protection
- Safety glasses with side shields, chemical googles, and/or face shields (depending on type of work and chemicals being used) must be worn in laboratory or operating areas. These are worn over the eyes. Contact lens can be worn or employee can get prescription safety glasses or goggles.
- Safety glasses with side shields are required in all laboratories, and goggles, and fume hood and/or respirator when chemical fumes or gases may be present.
- All must wear approved safety glasses or goggles as appropriate in lab areas. All MSDS for chemicals used are available and reviewed for specific hazards so individuals are aware.
- Other eye related PPE is required when handling chemicals, undertaking metal removal operations etc.
- Not an issue and safety specs are worn as standard
- None – only use proper PPE
- Specific chemical hazards
- What type of laboratory work is being done
- Continuation of past practice
- Materials we work with don’t present an issue.