Protective Eyewear Standards
Why Wear Eye Protection?
Industrial related eye injuries are commonly caused by chemical splashes, metal or plastic debris hitting the eye, tools accidentally striking the face, and improper use of equipment.
Why is eye protection necessary?
Legislation decrees that approved safety glasses or eye protection must be worn in a wide variety of workplace environments. Statistics show that despite such requirements, in 2002 there were 6435 claims for eye injury compensation in Australia.
What features should be looked for in quality safety glasses?
Check to see that the spectacles have the Australian Standards logo which indicate that they conform to tests for impact resistance. There are also lens markings indicating suitability for specific applications.
What does this AS/NZS1337 .1:2010 Standard test for?
A number of requirements need to be met before any eye protection can meet this Standard. All eye protection must meet the following criteria:
- General Finish: The eye protector must be finished correctly and not cause injury or discomfort during use.
- Materials: Materials should not cause skin irritation, abrasion or skin discolouration.
- Optical Properties of Lenses: Lenses that offer protection, provide no distortion and are comfortable to wear.
- Ventilation: Eye protectors that completely seal the eyes must provide ventilation (Note: some medium and high impact protectors are exempt from this requirement).
- Dimensional requirements for face shields and spectacles: The minimum vertical dimension for face shields is 150mm from the lower edge of the browguard to the lower edge of the visor. For spectacles a length of not less than 42mm and a depth of not less than 32mm is required.
- Lateral Protection: In addition to 'impact' testing, eye protectors claiming impact resistance greater than low impact resistance must also provide lateral protection. This is evaluated by placing the eye protector on a manikin head and being subjected to horizontal impact using a metal rod about 2 metres long and 22mm in diameter.
- Impact Resistance: All eye protection shall be capable of withstanding impact from a specified weight ball without cracking, detaching or dislodging, breaking or coming into contact with the eye or the head.
- Low Impact - Can withstand impact from an object moving at 12 metres per second (46km/h).
- Medium Impact - Can withstand impact from an object moving up to 45 metres per second (162km/h).
- High Impact - Can withstand impact from an object moving up to 120 metres per second (432km/h).
- Extra High Impact - Can withstand impact from an object moving up to 190 metres per second (632km/h).
- Penetration Resistance: Eye protection must withstand penetration of a specified weight projectile without cracking into two or more pieces, being pierced or allowing the projectile to come into contact with the eye or the head.
- Flame Propagation: Materials used in the construction of protectors should withstand heat so that the burning rate of the material will be no greater than 100mm per minute.
- Thermal Stability: Materials used in the construction of protectors shall be stable at elevated temperatures and will show no physical distortion in optical properties or strength.
- Protection Against Corrosion: When tested for corrosion, the materials shall have a smooth surface free from corrosion.
- Low Impact Protection: All eye protection should be capable of withstanding the relevant test for low impact.
- Medium Impact Protection: Medium impact protection is required for wide vision goggles, wide vision spectacles, faceshields and eye shields.
- High Impact Protection: High impact resistant spectacles, glasses and shields should be worn during impact tasks including metal chipping, hydraulic nailing or any mechanical procedure involving high velocity machinery.
Source: ProChoice Protective Eyewear Standards found on Page 121 of our Pro-Pac Packaging Product Catalogue 2018/19.