Eye Safety Blog

A Second Look At Safety Glasses

Posted by Kaitlyn Miller on Fri, Sep 13, 2013 @ 08:09 AM

Safety glasses weren’t always considered part of everyday utility construction equipment. It was during the mid-1980s when companies really started embracing the use of safety glasses as mandatory personal protective equipment (PPE). Today you cannot step foot on a utility construction site without proper PPE, including safety glasses. Much has been accomplished in eyewear design, fit and comfort over the past 25 years, and many eye injuries have been avoided as a result of these significant changes. The purpose of this Tailgate is to cover some of the basics of safety glasses, as well as address some of the concerns about wearing them.

The Basics
Safety glasses are made with shatter-resistant lenses to protect the eye from flying debris. Although safety lenses may be constructed from a number of materials with various impact resistances, testing standards require that they maintain a minimum thickness at the thinnest point, regardless of material. The following table contrasts the benefits of each lens type typically available in approved safety eyewear.

Safety Diagram resized 600

Approved industrial eye protection meets the performance standards of ANSI Z87.1. Safety glasses that meet this standard must pass a high-velocity object test for frames and lenses, and meet the criteria for lens thickness, corrosion, flammability and side-shield protection, as well as optical requirements. Glasses that meet the ANSI Z87.1 standard are marked with Z87 on the inside of the frame temple bars.

Issues and Concerns
Although much has been done to ingrain safety glass use into everyday life, many eye injuries still occur on a daily basis. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 2,000 workplace eye injuries occur every day, with 100 of them resulting in one or more days of lost work. A U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics survey of workers who suffered eye injuries found that nearly three out of five were not wearing eye protection at the time of the accident. The most common answer given by construction workers with eye injuries when asked why they weren’t wearing safety glasses? “I didn’t think that I needed them!”

Beyond the pain and suffering incurred by the injured employee, additional consequences exist for every eye injury that occurs. The cost of eye injuries to employers is more than $300 million in lost production time, medical expenses and workers’ compensation. The rates of eye injury and lost work time can each be reduced by 50 percent or more when personal protective eyewear is worn, according to a review of the effectiveness of various interventions for preventing work-related eye injuries.

Improving Our Odds
Much research has been done over the years to understand why employees choose not to wear safety glasses. The following suggestions are based on this research with the intent to help drive improvements that would increase usage of safety glasses.

Comfort/Fit: Glasses that are comfortable and fit the wearer are shown to be used more often than those that do not.

Eye Injury Education: Helping employees understand the consequences of eye injuries motivates them to protect their eyes.

Style/Choice: Having a preferred style or allowing employees to make a choice will increase safety glass use.

Enforcement/Reinforcement: Ensuring glasses are worn and providing coaching will help the employee understand the need for eye protection.

Accessibility/Availability: Having an easily accessible supply of safety glasses increases employee usage.

Anti-fogging: Glasses that fog in higher temperatures or during labor-intensive work decrease the employee’s use of eyewear. Anti-fog glasses and anti-fog solutions/wipes have been shown to significantly improve performance, resulting in increased eye protection use.

Although we have seen dramatic improvement in eye protection development and use over the past three decades, an opportunity exists for all of us to do our part and help those we work with protect their eyes. By using the suggestions in this Tailgate, you can have a positive and significant impact on your co-workers and their families.

Author: John Boyle

Tags: eye safety standards, Glasses, safety glasses, Anti-fog Lenses, Eyewear

Thinking of Buying Your Glasses Online? Don't.

Posted by Cristie Wineland on Fri, Jun 22, 2012 @ 08:06 AM

Have you ever bought a pair of glasses online, whether they were for reading, safety or every day use? Were you unsure what measurement to choose? Did you know what the measurements were for? In most cases people end up guessing what size they need so when their glasses arrive they are either too small or too big. By not fitting properly, your glasses can cause headaches, pain behind your ears if too small or simply slide off your face if they’re too big. This can become especially dangerous for an individual who purchased safety glasses for their job or for around-the-house projects. When safety glasses become a nuisance rather than an asset, the individual is less likely to wear them, which lDo Not Buy Glasses Onlineeave their eyes vulnerable.

 What I have heard the most from people who have ordered their glasses online is that they were disappointed with the product that showed up at their door. In many cases the frame felt cheap and after a couple weeks of use it rang true because they would have to seek a repair shop such as Hi-Tech Optical for adjustments. From experience, Hi-Tech Optical has had customers bring in their online frame to be repaired but depending what the frame is made of and how it was put together many are unfixable. An individual can spend a lot of money for what they think is a nice, quality frame but in the end they are frustrated with their purchase once it arrives.

 Another occurring problem with purchasing glasses online is that your prescription may not be correct. You also may have purchased a certain material for your lenses such as polycarbonate but have ended up with plastic. To anyone not in the optical business you may not notice these differences, especially if your prescription was only off by a small amount. The only way to know for sure that you received exactly what you paid for is to take them to a trained professional to be examined.

 The time and money spent shopping online for what you think is more convenience would have been better spent running to your local optical store. Your local optical store offers larger frame selections to choose from and try on with the assistance of trained opticians to help guide you through the process. Opticians have knowledge about frames and lens options that would work best for your lifestyle. They also have knowledge about frame sizes and shapes that are suitable for your facial features. By shopping locally you will have the correct measurements for your frame as well as a full understanding about what you are purchasing.

Tags: safety glasses, trained opticians, larger frame selections, adjustments, buying glasses online, shop locally, online frame

Shooting Glasses Lens Tinting for Hunters, Police, and Competition

Posted by Cristie Wineland on Wed, Mar 16, 2011 @ 09:03 AM

Whether you’re an avid hunter, shooter or police officer, shooting glasses provide added protection from small objects traveling at a fast pace. Although they are not bullet proof, they will protect you from flying objects, such as shell casings, while shooting.

Lens Tinting

If you’re in the woods hunting, at the shooting range for practice, or participating in a shooting competition, you’ll want to select the appropriate lens tinting for your specific application and lighting conditions. Shooting glasses differ from regular safety glasses because of unique lens tints such as orange and amber/yellow. These colors are used to illuminate everything properly, giving you improved vision, especially during dawn and dusk.

Below is a quick break-down of the lens tint colors:

  • Amber/Yellow: The amber and yellow tints appear to be the same color. They allow for a high level of contrast and improved definition, especially in low-light applications such as dawn or dusk. It has 85% VLT (visual light transmittance), which is why you don’t want to use an amber lens at high noon. (Note: VLT is the approximate amount of visible light that gets through a lens.)
  • Orange: An orange tint is very similar to amber and yellow, but with more of an orange hue. This color tint provides a high contrast and is ideal for general wear with intermittent light conditions. It has a 50% VLT.
  • Gray: Regular sunglasses use a gray tint and are primarily used for outdoor applications. This color tint minimizes glare that can result from eye strain and fatigue. Gray lens tinting has 15% VLT, which is why you can’t see well while wearing your sunglasses at dawn or dusk.

Shooting Glasses Improve Your Sight for Distance

There are special techniques that can be applied to your shooting glasses to improve your site for distance. Some doctors create specialty pairs of shooting glasses for a specific distance, such as 100 meters away from a target. Prescription shooting glasses can improve your ability to see both the site and target, as well as improve your shooting accuracy.

Example: Michigan Police Officer Wears Improved Shooting Glasses

In Michigan last year, a Saginaw Township police officer asked Hi-Tech Optical Inc. to create a pair of prescription shooting glasses for him. Hi-Tech Optical applied a few special techniques to improve the vision. After using the shooting glasses, he returned to the office and explained how happy he was with the new glasses that we had made him. He said, “It has increased my ability to see the site and target simultaneously. It has also improved my shooting ability and accuracy.” How is this possible? Hi-Tech Optical uses a combination of lenses in a strategic way to obtain these types of results. If you want to see these same results, contact us.

Tags: safety eyewear, safety glasses, shooting glasses, safety goggles

The Differences between Safety Goggles and Safety Glasses

Posted by Cristie Wineland on Wed, Feb 23, 2011 @ 13:02 PM

When it comes to eye safety, there are some cases in which regular safety glasses will work perfectly for your needs. However, there are cases in which you might want to use safety goggles for complete protection.

So how do you decide between safety glasses and safety goggles? Below is an explanation of the differences.

Safety Glasses

For a good majority of eye protection needs, you’ll probably want to wear safety glasses. The safety frames, safety lenses and side shields will provide adequate protection and safety from flying objects. Safety glasses help protect your eyes from objects that could bruise, pierce or damage the eyes and are tested to withstand high impacts. Safety frames are tested to ensure they can withstand the impact from a 1/4” steel ball traveling at 150 fps (feet per second) without dislodging the lenses. Safety lenses for safety glasses are tested to withstand impact from a 1/4” steel ball shot at 150 fps.

Safety Goggles

While safety glasses protect from high impact, they do not provide complete eye protection from all elements in the air because there are small gaps around the top, sides and bottom. There are many work and sport environments in which safety goggles would be a better choice to provide complete eye protection. Safety googles provide complete 360 degree coverage around the eyes and includes a strap to help hold the goggles securely against your face. They also usually contain breathing or ventilation holes to help with air flow.

In most cases, you won’t wear prescription safety goggles. Most people wear their regular dress prescription glasses or prescription safety glasses with the safety goggles overtop for the added protection. Here’s an example of when you would want to put safety goggles on over your glasses or safety glasses. If you are grinding metal, you don’t want the debris metal fragments to ruin your safety glasses. Especially with glass lenses, the metal fragments can stick, burn and pit the lenses. And with the metal fragments flying through the air, it would be easy for them to whisp around your glasses and into your eyes. With the 360 degree fit around the glasses, your safety glass lenses and your eyes are completely protected.

When trying to decide if you need safety glasses or safety goggles, the answer might be both. But it really depends on if you need a prescription to see clearly and if you are ever dealing with fine particles or debris that can be air borne.

Tags: safety glasses, safety goggles