Smith & Baltaxe, LLP

Work-related Injuries and Vision Loss

By Byron Smith on March 13, 2019

A concerned middle-aged manWhen eye injuries occur at the workplace, they can have a lasting effect on your general well-being and quality of life. Our team of San Francisco, CA personal injury attorneys can help you after a workplace accident, holding negligent parties accountable for unsafe conditions and dangerous work environments. Attorneys Byron Smith and Bernhard Baltaxe are here to help injured workers and their loved ones in their time of legal need.

The team at Smith & Baltaxe, LLP would like to consider some numbers on workplace eye injuries, common causes of these vision accidents, and what legal options may be worth pursuing.

Statistics on Workplace Eye Injuries

According to the organization Prevent Blindness, approximately 2,000 people injure their eyes each day. An estimated 10 percent of these eye injuries will require that worker to take time off to properly recover. Around 10 percent to 20 percent of these eye injuries will lead to temporary or permanent vision loss.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) estimates that workplace eye injuries result in $300 million in lost productivity.

Potential Causes of Eye Injuries

Some common causes of eye injuries at a workplaces include:

  • Flying objects
  • Liquid chemicals
  • Chemical fumes/gases
  • Particulate matter in the air
  • Certain types of tools/equipment
  • Bright flashes

Any combination of the above can result in serious harm to your eyes and lasting effects on your vision quality. These causes of eye injuries cover everything from flying bits of metal and wood, toxic or caustic solvents, sparks, and the flame from welding torches and related equipment.

The Importance of Eye and Face Protection

If you work in construction, manufacturing, a laboratory, or any sort of workplace/vocation that involves potential hazards to the eyes, it’s imperative that you wear some kind of eye or face protection. According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, up to 90 percent of workplace eye injuries could have been prevented if the person was wearing eye or face protection.

Work goggles can protect the eyes from liquids and solids, and should be work whenever you are near a potential hazard. If you weld or work around bright and hot flames, a face mask, visor, or goggles with dark lenses will help prevent vision loss as you perform your job.

Eye Wash Stations

In the event of an eye injury caused by chemicals, gases, particulate matter, or harmful substances, many workplaces have eye wash stations. These can help workers flush out harmful substances in their eyes, preventing severe eye damage and vision loss in the process.

Did You Experience Unsafe Working Conditions?

If you or a loved one has experienced an eye injury, it’s important to consider the work environment was safe and up to OSHA standards. If employees were forced to take unnecessary risks on the job, there was a lack of eye protection available, or there were no eye wash stations, these could be indications that the site was unsafe.

We can discuss the nature of your case in greater detail during a legal consultation at our office. Our lawyers are here to offer honest counsel regarding your situation, and can advise you on your best course of action moving forward.

Contact Our Team of Work Injury Lawyers

To learn more about your legal rights and options following an accident at your workplace, be sure to contact our team of work injury attorneys. The law firm of Smith & Baltaxe, LLP can help you. You can reach our office by phone at (415) 292-7800.

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