Safety Eye Protection – Focus on Your Bottom Line


Providing safety eye protection to your employees is part of taking care of your workers and protecting your business. Pressure washing and other industrial cleaning tasks endanger your employees’ eyes and faces. Chemicals, fumes, pressurized liquid and the occasional airborne object are constantly within blinding range of your crew, so you’ll want lots of equipment between their eyeballs and these hazards. Some eye injuries can also happen when your workers are wearing eye protection, because they are wearing the wrong equipment or they are wearing it improperly.

The Occupational Health & Safety Administration (OSHA) has given employers the responsibility to ensure that the correct safety eye equipment is on hand, as well as making sure that employees actually wear it correctly. If an employee is already wearing prescription lenses, you should make it very clear to him that regular glasses are neither safety glasses nor goggles, and then you should find some eye protection for him to wear which will accommodate his glasses.

OSHA has a rather exhaustive list of occupations where safety eye protection should routinely be used, but powerwasher operators aren’t on that list. Just so we don’t feel left out, though, they also have a list of hazards which may be present on other jobs, indicating a need for eye protection. These potential injuries include dirt or dust entering the eye. Also, chemical splashes, hot liquids and other hazardous solutions pose a possible threat. Finally, any possibility of objects swinging into the eye or face such as tree limbs or ropes is also a good reason to use eye protection. If you or your employees aren’t encountering a few of these hazards daily, business must be awfully slow.

Safety Eye Protection

Choosing any kind of safety accessories like Turtleskin protective equipment you purchase should be intended for the hazards you are trying to protect your employees from. This equipment should also fit your employees and be reasonably comfortable to wear. This seems obvious, but it’s worth mentioning that the safety eye protection should not restrict a person’s vision. You should be able to clean the equipment, and it should also be reasonably durable. Also, OSHA would like it very much if the manufacturer’s name is clearly visible on the piece of equipment. Other guidelines which may or may not apply to you can be found in ANSI standard Z87.1-1989.

The kind of safety eye protection that you will most likely need would be goggles and face shields. Goggles have the double advantage of being waterproof and reasonably projectile proof, so they will protect better than standard safety glasses. Face shields not only protect the eye, they can also protect faces from chemical splashes. Face shields are generally not so effective against projectiles, however. They tend to crack easily.

Each kind of protective eyewear is made for a specific hazard. Once you identify the entire hazards specific to your workspace, be sure to obtain the correct safety eye protection and then make sure your employees wear them correctly.


The publisher of these pages is in no way responsible for any damage caused to you, your pressure washer, anyone else, your property, or anyone else's property by trying to implement or by successfully implementing the above-mentioned performance and services.