Eye & Ear Protection at Work – Ensuring Worker Safety

Eye and ear protection at work is important if there are risks of injury. Workers can suffer from many different types of injury to the eyes and ears, and the consequences can be severe. If proper measures have not been put in place by the company, it leaves the business open to legal action.

worker wearing eye and ear protection

Every business must perform risk assessments looking at workplace hazards. If eye and ear injuries are a possibility then PPE must be used.


Types of Eye Injury

Risk of eye injury can vary depending on the nature of the work the employee is doing. Problems can include impaired vision, burns due to working with hazardous materials, and minor cuts and bruises. However, some injuries can even result in partial or total blindness.


Types of Eye Protection

Depending on your profession, there is a wide range of protective equipment which can be worn to prevent eye injuries. These could be face shields, welding helmets, respirators which cover the entire face and head, safety glasses and goggles.

The important thing is that you must wear the right protective equipment for the job you’re doing. If you’re unsure what that is, you need to ask the health and safety manager. If your workplace does not have a health and safety manager, you should find out who is responsible.


Types of Ear Injury

Working in areas where there is excessive noise for a prolonged period can cause both temporary and permanent damage to ears. In some cases, this can lead to partial or complete deafness. You might also end up suffering from tinnitus. This condition is a constant ringing in the ears, you can also suffer from severe headaches as a result.

Ears can be vulnerable to from cuts, bruises, and from flying debris hitting them. For example, if you were using a chainsaw to cut down a tree and a piece of wood hit you

A workplace needs to ensure that ears are not only protected from noise, but from objects that could hit them.


Types of Ear Protection

The two main forms of ear protection are ear muffs and ear plugs.

If you’re in jobs where you need either constant protection from extreme levels of noise you will need ear protection. Examples include working on or close to the runway of an airport, or operating the a pneumatic drill.

Ear muffs will not only protect in terms of the exposure to the noise, they will also protect from ear injuries such as cuts and bruises caused by flying debris or stones.

Ear plugs are more likely to be worn where the level of noise is not as extreme. They’d be used where noie is still above an acceptable level, and more constant. For example, a factory with multiple machines running at the same time.

Eye and ear protection at work is covered by health and safety legislation. Be sure to know your rights and that your employer provides you with the correct protective equipment.

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