Safety Glasses OSHA Approved: PPE For The Eyes


Workers always hate to wear any kind of personal protection equipment, or PPE and safety glasses are no different.

With changes in technology workers are not as resistant as in the past! The end result is a safer workplace.

In 1970, the Occupational Safety and Health Act stated the following to “assure safe and healthy working conditions for working men and women”.

The US government agency OSHA, is responsible for enforcement and determining the safety regulations required for all U.S. businesses. Everything from safety protective glasses, hardhats, steel-toed boots, protective clothing, harnesses and more is part of the PPE regulations.

The PPE requirements vary in degree and dependent on type of the industry.

Mandatory Personal Protective Equipment

OSHA requires workers to use the required or mandatory PPE for any job which may pose a threat to a person’s health. Employers are responsible in assessing the work environment for any health threat potential and take the necessary actions to reduce the work hazard.

If a hazard exist, employers must educate the employee and provide the personal protective equipment.

Education goes beyond identifying the hazard but educating personnel about the possible dangers and also providing proper education on the use of the PPE equipment.

For example safety glasses, standards approved by OSHA, must be worn in any circumstance where workers will or might be exposed to flying debris, often in the form of sparks, dust or splashes. This is especially true when loading or mixing spray tanks.

Watch the video below where safety glasses are shot with a pellet gun. Imagine a rock flying out of your lawn mower toward your eyes.


Today’s safety glasses no longer look like the old shop glasses of the 1950’s and 60’s. Todays safety eyewear look much like eyewear you would wear everyday and can be a prescription safety glasses and safety bifocals, trifocals and progressive focus lenses as standard.

The lens have also changed dramatically! Now high tech polycarbonate lenses are more impact resistant and lighter, however there is a reduction in the optical clarity.

Trivex is a new material offering excellent optical clarity and more impact resistant than polycarbonate lenses. Expense is currently the issue with Trivex keeping availability lower.

All these new safety eyewear models and materials can be coated a variety of tints, both cosmetic and functional.

Goggles except for in extreme requirements of industries find little use in agriculture.

They fog easily and do not provide great optical clarity not to mention the discomfort in wearing them.

Z-87 Certification

What do you look for in selecting OSHA approved safety eyewear? Any safety glasses meeting or exceeding OSHA standards will carry a stamp saying “Z-87” on the lens or temple piece.

Advances in chemistry continue to push safety glasses to style boundaries while protecting users from almost any hazard and make them virtually indistinguishable from trendy and expensive brand name sunglasses.

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