The CDC says that around 2,000 on-the-job eye injuries occur each day in the United States. Colorado workers are a part of that statistic.
Protecting your eyes at work seems simple enough, yet eye injuries occur at alarming frequencies. Construction workers receive many eye injuries at work, but office workers also experience significant eye injuries. Eye strain from constant computer screen exposure, known as “computer vision syndrome” or blue light exposure, is also rising.
Types of eye injuries eligible for workers’ compensation benefits
Workers’ compensation benefits are available for employees who injure their eyes at work, excluding any prohibitive factors such as roughhousing or mishandling equipment. Serious eye injuries from flying particles such as wood, steel or other debris happen to workers who handle welding equipment, automated cutting tools, etc. Those abrasion-type injuries may be evident to the naked eye but still need to be diagnosed by a doctor to qualify for workers’ compensation.
Office eye injuries are less evident than manual labor ones. Computer screen exposure, dust and other airborne particulates can enter the eye and cause long-term damage. The following is a brief list of office eye injuries that may be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits:
- Cornea scrapes from flying debris
- Cuts from foreign objects lodged into the eye through air vents
- Loss vision from extended computer viewing
- Liquid injuries from hand sanitizers or cleansers entering the eyes
Knowing that benefits are available should you receive an eye injury from work is comforting. However, it’s also essential to increase protection for your most vulnerable asset: your sight.
How to protect your eyes at work?
Workers’ compensation benefits help cover your medical treatments and wages while you’re recovering from your injuries. However, a severe eye injury could render you permanently disabled and unable to work. Using every precaution, such as protective eye wear and blue light lenses, is the safest way to prevent eye injuries.