Out of Sight – the dangers of eye injuries
At AMTD we don’t believe the dangers of eye injuries for workers should be out of sight as this is part of the First aid at work syllabus and a topic that is popping up more frequently from our delegates as an area of concern.
Have you ever considered that it can take many years of exposure to hazardous noise to damage a person’s hearing to the extent that they become deaf but it only takes a split second for a person to become blind or seriously damage their eyesight.
Eye injuries can occur in any setting including home , playing sports and work. In fact according to Eye care trust, sport is the largest cause of hospital admission for serious eye injuries in the UK .
Particular hazardous sports are of course racket sports especially squash, in fact squash balls are responsible for 2,000 hospital admissions a year whilst squash rackets account for around 2,400!
Other hazardous sports include football or basket ball,2,153 people. Hockey 346, 392 from badminton, 458 from rugby and 50 from trampolining.
Currently there are no known incidents of people suffering eye injuries from staying home on the sofa and watching TV , unless of course you accidentally poke yourself in the eye with the remote or are forced to watch an episode of Geordie shore without appropriate eye protection !!
Do you work in an area that could be hazardous to your eye sight ? Well in 2011, 1755 people had some eye injury and 1249 of those resulted in absence from work for more than 3 days indicating injuries of a more serious nature.
The most common eye injuries are :
- Blows to the eye such as being hit by a fist or a ball
- Scratches and abrasions
- Foreign bodies
- Penetrating injuries
- Chemical burns
- UV radiation exposure
- Laser radiation
As a first aider you need to be aware of the first aid treatment for the hazards in your area and regularly refresh your knowledge and check on the first aid equipment
As a manager you need to have assessed the risks, produced risk assessments, ensured appropriate training for the first aiders and provided PPE and first aid resources and training on how to use both.
As an employee you should use the PPE provided, attend the training sessions and make yourself aware of who your nearest first aider is and where the nearest first aid equipment is located. This will be recorded on the health and safety poster.
For more information on eye injuries you can contact the HSE or Rospa