As many Minnesota workers may know, an eye injury is common in the workplace and one that could be lessened if safety measures were followed. About 2,000 eye injuries happen every day at work. While some companies lack eye safety policies, other issues are involved. According to one volunteer safety and health group, up to 90 percent of eye workplace injuries are preventable with safety goggles. Not all workers use them, however. One study found that 66 percent of workers complained of fogginess as a reason not to use protective eyewear.
Another issue is worker productivity. Trying to finish a job requires focus and application. A worker may be unable to visualize the work area due to fogginess, and taking time to wipe the glasses interferes with job productivity. In addition, working outdoors in the summer months may see a rise in injuries due to fogged eyewear. Certain designs in eyewear contribute to this problem, particularly wraparound protective eye glasses. Removing the eyewear also increases the worker’s susceptibility to injury.
Because of the physical danger and high costs involved with eye injuries, the Occupational Health and Safety Administration has made recommendations. The agency suggests incorporating this into summer safety concerns due to heat. One idea is to use fog-resistant eyewear or give workers the opportunity of using anti-fog treatments such as spays or wipes. Another preemptive solution is to make sure eyewear is comfortable and fits well.
A worker who suffers an eye injury will often be forced to lose time from work or loss of vision. Most employers are required to carry workers’ compensation insurance, and an attorney can often be of assistance to an injured worker in filing a claim for benefits.