Workers who get exposed to caustic chemicals at their various work stations need to take the issues of safety seriously.
In case of chemicals splashed into the eyes accidentally they can cause permanent vision damage or other serious consequences like complete vision loss.
Therefore, having an eye wash station at such workplaces to help the injured workers flush the chemicals from the eyes immediately can help a great deal.
Employers who have workers dealing with chemicals as part of their day-to-day jobs need to have emergency eye wash stations near the workplace and ensure that all the workers know how to use them properly in a time of emergency.
Eye wash stations; how to use it
It’s very critical to start flushing out the chemical from the eyes immediately when they splash around the eye area.
Time is of great essence in saving the injured person’s eyesight in such a situation. If you have invested in an ANSI-compliant eye wash station, you can easily save the person’s vision by activating the eye wash station by pulling a lever. Once you pull the lever, an eye flushing fluid will start flowing from the faucets.
The person should turn his or her head to a position where the eyes are directly in the stream of the eye wash fluid and hold the eyes wide open using his or her fingers. You don’t have to continue holding the lever for the eye wash fluid to continue flowing once the lever has been pulled.
The person should continue rolling the eyes from up and down and side to side so as to ensure that the eye wash fluid spreads to all parts of the eye, adequately.
In order to dilute the chemicals from the eyes fully, the person should continue flushing and rolling the eyes for 15 minutes. If the victim has contact lenses he or she should remove them while flushing.
The unit has a stream that is between 60 and 100 degrees Fahrenheit to allow you to continue flushing comfortably for the entire time. After the flushing procedure, the person should then be taken to a medical facility for some medical checkup and further treatment.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) require employers in special workplaces that have workers dealing with chemicals to invest in eye wash stations.
Some 6 Eye wash stations requirements
In order to comply with the federal regulations, the eye wash stations ought to have certain characteristics. For example, the design of the eye wash unit should enable the user to use it without holding the lever with his or her hands while flushing. Here are some of the vital standards that an eye wash unit must have:
- Once the dust pops up and the water valve opens, it should remain open until it has been closed.
- Plumbed stations ought to be tested on a weekly basis.
- It must be corrosion-proof and the wash fluid should withstand freezing temperatures without freezing.
- The eye wash station should be able to maintain a flushing fluid capable of working at 30 pounds per square inch for 15 minutes.
- The eye wash fluid should be inspected and changed according to the manufacturer’s’ recommendations.
- Other requirements for inspection should apply according to the local or state standards.
The 6 Basic inspection requirements include:
- Ensure that the pathway to the eye wash station is free of obstructions and can be accessed easily.
- Ensure that the eye wash station is placed within 10 seconds from the workplace and on the same plane.
- Ensure that there are no sediments in the eye wash fluid.
- Verify that the fluid has not frozen and is always ready for use.
- Verify whether the fluid needs to be replaced.
- All workers who have the potential of using the eye wash stations must be trained on how to use the unit.
There are different types of eye wash units in the market that should be placed between 34 to 54 from the floor and six inches from the wall.
Some of the common types of eye wash stations used include combination units, self-contained eye/face washes, personal wash stations, and drench hoses.
Portable eye wash station
A portable eye wash station gives you the allowance of keeping the emergency unit wherever you need it. They are vital for workplaces using spill or waste cleanup, construction, and caustic material disposal. Here are examples of some portable eye wash stations.
- Haws® Freeze-Resistant Self-Contained Gravity-Fed Eyewash Station 7500EB- 1105D- has the capability of keeping water tempered in freezing points. https://www.hawsco.com/eyewash/
- Honeywell Fendall Pure Flow 1000® Emergency Eyewash Station 32-001000-0000-the eye wash portable eye wash unit is suitable for tough industrial areas. http://www.honeywellsafety.com
- Guardian Portable Eyewash and Drench Hose Unit-it’s a 15-gallon portable unit suitable for places without a constant supply of water. http://www.gesafety.com
- Sellstrom Portable Eyewash Dust Cover 90335-it has dust covers for protecting the eye wash fluid from dust and dirt. http://www.sellstrom.com
- Guardian Aquaguard® Gravity Flow Portable Eyewash Station- it’s suitable for a wide variety of applications.
- SAS SAFETY CORP. Portable Wallmount Gravity-Fed Eyewash 5135- it can be used as a wall-mount or a free standing eye wash station.
- Bradley 5-Gallon Pressurized Eye/Facewash Unit S19-672- it’s suitable for use where there is no permanent supply of water.
- Haws® Gravity-Operated Portable Eyewash Station-suitable for power-free safety.
- Bradley On-Site® Portable Gravity-Fed Eyewash Station- is flexible, and thus can meet the changing needs of various workplaces.
- Speakman® GravityFlo® Portable Eyewash SE-4300- it’s designed to meet the needs of off-site operations.
- Speakman® Portable Eyewash SE-590-the portable unit is specially designed to meet the needs of temporary locations.
- Refillable Eyewash Station- it can store the eye wash fluid at your workplace area.
- Bradley Portable Pressurized Eyewash With Drench Hose- It can provide workers with eye wash anywhere, anytime.
- Bradley Heated Portable Pressurized Eyewash Tanks-it’s an eye wash station that can control water even in sub-optimal weather conditions.
- Haws® Pressurized Portable Eyewash and Body Spray- the eye wash station is pressurized for optimal functionality.
- Haws® Pressurized Portable Eyewash 7602.15- the water station provides air pressure-powered safety for eye wash flushing.