Common Workplace Eye Injuries and How to Prevent and Address Them

The eye is one of the most delicate parts of the human body, and eye injuries can be very serious. They can also cause a lot of missed work time and lost productivity. It is vital to make sure that employees are protected from eye injuries, and that they have the proper training to protect the eye.

Common Eye Injuries

Eye Scraping

There are a few common eye injuries that tend to happen at work. The most common is probably eye scraping. This is when something hits or scratches the eye. These can be small objects or particles. Dust, wood or cement chips, or metal slivers can all easily scrape the eye. As well, larger objects can come into contact with the face, causing trauma to the eye or the socket.


Penetration is when an object pierces the eye. This can cause blindness or loss of vision. Nails and staples are often the culprits, but slivers and other metal objects can also be to blame.

Thermal and Chemical Burns

Cleaning products and industrial chemicals can cause major damage to the eye. Burns can cause permanent loss of vision and even damage the tissue surrounding the eye. Welders are often at the most risk for thermal burns because of the nature of their work.


Because the area is so sensitive, all precautions must be made to ensure proper eye safety and prevent eye injury. For starters, all employees must be made aware and reminded of the eye safety hazards that are present on the job site or in the workplace. Plus, these hazards should be neutralized if possible. That means using work screens, machine guards, or any other method to prevent objects and materials from getting to the eyes. Perhaps the most important step to take is for all employees to wear the right eye protection at all times. This means wearing certified safety goggles that are appropriate for the job being done.

Injuries to the eye and the surrounding tissue are not to be taken lightly. Not only can the result be a loss of productivity and work hours, but permanent loss of vision or complete blindness are real risks. Make sure your employees work safely to prevent eye injuries.

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