Date: Thu, 11 Sep 2003 15:16:18 -0400
Reply-To: SAFETY approval accont <approval1**At_Symbol_Here**>
Sender: DCHAS-L Discussion List <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**LIST.UVM.EDU>
From: SAFETY approval accont <approval1**At_Symbol_Here**>
Subject: Re: Laboratory eye protection: 23 responses

It is interesting to note that the answers below reflect different
responses to the same question.

- Ralph

Date: Thu, 11 Sep 2003 08:03:45 -0400
From: richard rydza 

Evaluate the hazard and then select the correct PPE. if chemicals are
used and there is a potential for splash, yes then a goggle with seal
is appropriate.

now if there is general work where the splashing hazards do not
exist, i would recommend high or low impact eye wear Low or high
impact depends on the hazard on the possible flying object.

Richard Rydza, mrsafetyman
19 Wintergreen Place
Lackawanna, NY 14218
716-826-1747 phone / fax
Safety is Good Business

From: William Jackson 
Subject: RE: [DCHAS-L] Laboratory eye protection
Date: Thu, 11 Sep 2003 08:22:23 -0400

Linda: Goggles do provide the added splash protection from the sides.
Safety glasses even with side shields do not afford equal protection
as goggles do. I am a Chemist and remember, at school, being required
to wear the goggles which sometimes steamed up. At my current
position I often use a shield between me and any dangerous mixing.

                                Bill Jackson
                                Manager, Laboratory
                                Philadelphia Gas Works
                                215 787-4839

Date: Thu, 11 Sep 2003 08:25:04 -0400
From: "Sheets, M. Pamela" 

Goggles should be worn when there is any chance of splashing corrosive
liquids.  ANSIZ87.1a-1991 is the standard to reference.  Your chemistry
professor answered his/her own question when he/she acknowledged goggles are
better than safety glasses due to the seal.

Date: Thu, 11 Sep 2003 08:29:48 -0400
From: "Peart, Charlyn M" 
Subject: RE: [DCHAS-L] Laboratory eye protection

We require safety glasses at all time and require goggles and/or face shield
depending on the task that is being performed - splash or vapor hazard.

Date: Thu, 11 Sep 2003 08:57:10 -0400
From: ILPI 

>It is true that the goggles provide the best protection because they
>form a seal around the entire eye,

That's the answer as far as I am concerned.

Let's assume that you get a splash on your face.  Thanks to gravity,
that material is going to dribble down into the eyes whereas properly
worn goggles will generally prevent that.  Further, in the event of
an explosion, goggles will do a better job stopping a glass fragment
that is coming in at a vulnerable angle.  Finally, even good safety
glasses can occasionally slide down the bridge of the nose, leaving a
vulnerable gap for splash particles.

I never allowed undergraduates to use safety glasses in lieu of
goggles.  I remember a classmate from my third year of college who
decided to pour concentrated nitric acid from a large bottle directly
into a 10 ml graduate cylinder.  He put it the cylinder on a bench
and then bent down with his head sideways to read the meniscus as he
poured, "balancing" the lip of the bottle on the top of the cylinder
as he did so.  He was easy to spot in class for the next few weeks -
big yellow stains on his face.  Luckily, his goggles saved his eyes.
With safety glasses he almost definitely would have been worse off.

I have never had much problem with grad students or faculty wearing
safety glasses over goggles as their experience usually (but not
always) tends to minimize the danger of accidents like that.  Goggles
are, in my opinion, definitely safer for all parties, of course, and
faculty wearing them just like the students is teaching/leading by

A final reason is that it makes it easy to spot who is a student and
who is an instructor (wink) and goggles give you that great geek
hairstyle after lab...

Rob Toreki

Date: Thu, 11 Sep 2003 08:58:45 -0400
From: "William Munsey" 

This may be part of it:  Safety goggles provide splash protection
from the direction splashes are most likely to come:  below the eyes.
If there are glasses which provide protection from below as well as
from the sides and above, I am not aware of them.

Wiliiam Munsey
Professor of Chemistry
Blue Ridge (VA) Community College
munseyw (at) br (dot) vccs (dot) edu

Date: Thu, 11 Sep 2003 08:52:03 -0400
From: "Novodoff, Jack" 


Tell you faculty member that the indirectly vented goggles provide the
best eye protection for the student whereas safety glasses do not
prevent liquid from running down into the eyes if there is a full face
splash.  In addition, if there is an accident and the student has eye
injures, the university and the faculty member become legally liable for
not providing the best personal protection for the student.  The
students now are very litegation aware and will sue the university and
the faculty member.  If you university is like the UM, the faculty
member, by not enforcing the official safety policies of the department,
will not have the legal protection of the university.  He will be on his
own.  I hope he has several million dollares in personal liability
insurance.  Thanks


"We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give."
Sir Winston Churchill

Jack Novodoff, PhD                            Phone: (734) 764-7316
Director of Laboratories and Facilities  Fax:     (734) 647-4865
University of Michigan
Department of Chemistry
930 N. University
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1055

From: BO'Keeffe**At_Symbol_Here**
Date: Thu, 11 Sep 2003 08:21:53 -0500

Ask the faculty member how what the explanation will be to the
parents of the student whose eyes were damaged how the safety glasses
were ALMOST as good as the goggles and would keep out MOST of the
liquid - just not the base that ran down the forehead under the glass
rim and into the student's eye.

Barbara O'Keeffe
Director, Environmental Health & Safety
University of Texas at Tyler
email:   bokeeffe**At_Symbol_Here**
voice:  903-566-7011
fax:      903-565-5829
web site:

From: Gregoryju2**At_Symbol_Here**
Date: Thu, 11 Sep 2003 09:51:11 EDT

This doesn't surprise me. Safety goggles provide a seal around the
eyes which serves to protect against splashing liquids or organic
vapors. Safety glasses with side shields protect against flying
objects, but will allow liquids to run down into the eyes should it
be splashed on someone's forehead, etc.

From: "Shields, Jefry (JE)" 
Date: Thu, 11 Sep 2003 09:56:01 -0400

It's the splash protection that goggles provide that glasses don't.
If a splash of chemical solution strikes a person in the face,
goggles will prevent access of the solution to the eyes whereas
safety glasses will not.  This is not the direct splash as both will
provide this protection, it's the flowing of the solution once it's
on your face that goggles will better protect against.


Date: Thu, 11 Sep 2003 09:59:37 -0400
From: Dan Crowl 


I would recommend against requiring safety goggles in the lab.  They
are uncomfortable and result in interesting rings around your eyes.
I suspect that if you require goggles, students and faculty will
decide that the policy is "stupid" and not wear them all the time.
Since you already received an inquiry, I suspect this process is
already underway.

In our labs, we require regular safety glasses at all times in the
lab, but also require goggles for any operation involving chemical
transfers or other operations where liquids or other material might
be airborn.  Of course, the person has to use their judgement on when
to use goggles.  The goggles can fit right over the safety glasses.

Just my opinion....

Dan Crowl
Michigan Tech

From: "Diane Amell" 
Date: Thu, 11 Sep 2003 09:32:01 -0500

The reason is splashing. Even with the extra shields, splashing can
still occur. (And, let's face it - safety glasses can slip out of
position, whereas goggles have the headstrap that keeps them in
place.) ANSI Z87.1, which covers both occupational and educational
use of eye and face protection, requires goggles and does not
recommend the use of safety glasses when working with acids and other

- Diane Amell, MNOSHA

From: "Vernon, Russell" 
Date: Thu, 11 Sep 2003 07:33:29 -0700

Dear Linda,

As a good friend once told me... "The best form of eye protection is
that which is worn." When I worked at UC San Diego in the Chemistry &
Biochemistry undergraduate labs we noticed how well the foreheads of
the students were being protected with their goggles.

We began allowing safety glasses and amazingly enough even the
Instructors and TAs began wearing them!

Our 'rule of thumb' was "whenever a splash hazard existed" goggles
were required (sometimes with a face shield).  It all depended on the
hazard of the substance, the volume and the procedure (sometimes the
technique too!).

So, I recommend allowing safety glasses.  However, evaluate different
glasses and specify the students & other obtain only the ones you
have determined are the most suitable.

My 2 cents...

My thought are with the victims of the terrorist attacks two years ago,

Russell Vernon, Ph.D.
Laboratory / Research Safety Specialist
Environmental Health & Safety
University of California, Riverside
900 University Ave.
Riverside, CA 92521


Direct: (909) 787-5119
Admin: (909) 787-5528
Fax: (909) 787-5122

Date: Thu, 11 Sep 2003 09:05:29 -0600
From: Barbara Hinshaw 

Our policy at Brigham Young University is stated that if there exists
a possibility of chemical splash goggles are required.  Splash
goggles are required in all teaching laboratories.  I've had some
nasty accidents in which the student would have suffered significant
injury had they not been wearing goggles.

B.C. Hinshaw

Date: Thu, 11 Sep 2003 11:39:51 -0400
From: "George H. Wahl, Jr" 

Chemistry labs are notorious for being the home of dangerous spills
and splashes.

Only approved Chemical Splash Goggles provide adequate protection.

"Safety Glasses" are probably OK in machine shops, woodworking areas,
etc. where the source of a flying fragment is usually directly in
front of you.  However, in CH labs, splashes may come from many
different doirections.

You might consider keeping ALL faculty teaching students who attend
your labs informed of lab safety policies.

George H. Wahl, Jr.
Professor of Chemistry
N C State University
Raleigh, NC  27695-8204

(919) 515-2941
FAX  (919) 515-2545
Office - Dabney 328

Date: Thu, 11 Sep 2003 11:56:51 -0400
From: "Paul Weller" 


We also require goggles rather than safety glasses.  OSHA requires
safety glasses for most lab situations.  Our rational is two-fold.
First, will the users switch from the safety glasses to goggles when
the situation requires them?  Will they perform a procedure which
does not require goggles but has a significant opportunity for a
splash to bypass the glasses?  Second, are we willing to take the
liability risk of someone not wearing goggles?  If your answers are
generally no, yes, no then goggles are in everyone's best interest.
This might be called a "best practice" rather than a regulation.

On the personal experience side, after splashing toluene into my eye
when in industry, I would not want anyone to get anything into their

Paul Weller
Science Laboratory Manager-Chemistry
Elon University

Date: Thu, 11 Sep 2003 12:16:13 -0400
From: "Mary M. Cavanaugh" 

We just dealt with exactly the same issue.  Goggles are required if
there is a chance of liquids or dusts splashing into the eyes and the
liquid/dust is something that would cause harm to the eyes.  In my
experience, that means virtually any lab where wet chemistry will
take place requires goggles.

Safety glasses, whether they fit close to the face or not, are ONLY
FOR IMPACTS.  If impacts are the only hazard in a particular lab (for
example many of our physics labs), then by all means safety glasses
are appropriate.

I can provide you with citations from the regs, the preamble, and the
applicable ANSI standard if you need that level of justification.
Just give me a call.

On a related note - there's a very good chance that the resistance to
goggles is because the cheap ones everyone issues in academic labs
fog up like crazy.  Spend the extra dollar for anti-fog coating and a
lot of your resistance will melt away.
Mary M. Cavanaugh  
Industrial Hygiene Office
Appalachian State University
USMAIL ASU Box 32140
UPS/FEDEX: CAP Building Room 431
Boone NC 28608-2140
PHONE (828) 262-6838
FAX (828) 262-6558

Appstate employees -- check out our new website
at ""!

Date: Thu, 11 Sep 2003 10:18:21 -0700 (PDT)
From: sean riley 

You must use goggles if you have the potential for a splash of
liquid.  The safety glasses are good to protect against projectile
contact.  However, they do not provide adequate protection against
liquid splash.

Sean Riley, CHMM
HSE Manager Polaroid

From: "Rebecca Schafer" 
Date: Thu, 11 Sep 2003 13:16:57 -0500

Safety glasses do not provide adequate splash protection for the eyes
regardless of the length of the shields or other protective devices.
Chemical splash goggles, (indriectly vented) are the best protection
for splash hazards because they seal against the users face,
preventing chemicals from reaching the eye.  If you are concerned
with the students not wearing them because they fog, UVEX makes the
Stealth Goggle.  We use that at our company and it is comfortable and
the lenses are replaceable so they can be used for long periods of
time.  They also don't fog as much as your traditional goggle.

There is a video from the 1980's that demonstrates the differences in
eye protection.  Its a very useful tool for an educator as well as
for the students because it provides real examples of what can happen
when not using the proper eyewear.  "Eye and Face Protection in the
Chemical Laboratories" was produced by the National Society for the
Prevention of Blindness.  You can purchase this video from the
Laboratory Safety Institute for $59.  Or if you are a member, you can
borrow it from the lending library.

Rebecca Schafer
Environmental Health and Safety Coordinator
Cerilliant Corporation


I can only speak for research labs in industry. Using goggles is
appropriate for specific hazardous conditions. I suspect because the
target group is students that the desire is to be "extra safe."
Safety glasses (with shields) are appropriate for persons not running
hazardous experiments in a lab. The definition of "hazardous" becomes
one issue and the judgment of students/TAs as to what level of PPE is
appropriate becomes another. Goggles have their own issues that have
to be considered when deciding when to use and replace them. In hot,
high humidity environments, they can be very uncomfortable. The "age"
and must be replaced and are more costly than Safety Glasses.

PPE vs level of hazard
Visitors glasses - low hazard areas - lab walk throughs where length
of stay is low
ANSI Safety Glasses (w/shields) - low to medium hazard areas in labs
including in lab lectures or demos by an instructor.
Goggles - medium hazard areas where the hazard of eye contact with
chemicals is elevated. Student run experiments are an appropriate use.
Face shield over Goggles or Safety Glasses - medium to high hazard
where risk of explosion/implosion is elevated

Safety glasses (with shields) need to be ANSI approved for persons
that work in labs. "Visitors safety glasses" may not be so rated
depending on the model. We have chosen to only use ANSI glasses for
this function to avoid the confusion of 2 types of glasses.

This is my opinion.

                 L. William (Bill) Stuart
                    Principal Scientist
              Discovery Research RTP
          High Throughput NR Chemistry
             NTH-M.1123.1A RTP USA
      (919)483-9815 (v) - (919)315-0430 (fax)
        Bill.W.Stuart**At_Symbol_Here** (GSK internal)
   Bill_Stuart-Work**At_Symbol_Here** (outside GSK)
-------------------- have a nice day -------------------------------
"If we knew what it was we were doing, it would not
be called research, would it?"    - Albert Einstein

The views stated here are personal and do not represent GSK.
The information transmitted may contain confidential material.
Any use of, or taking of any action in reliance upon, this info
by anyone other than the intended recipient is prohibited.

Date: Thu, 11 Sep 2003 09:59:37 -0400
From: Dan Crowl 


I would recommend against requiring safety goggles in the lab.  They
are uncomfortable and result in interesting rings around your eyes.
I suspect that if you require goggles, students and faculty will
decide that the policy is "stupid" and not wear them all the time.
Since you already received an inquiry, I suspect this process is
already underway.

In our labs, we require regular safety glasses at all times in the
lab, but also require goggles for any operation involving chemical
transfers or other operations where liquids or other material might
be airborn.  Of course, the person has to use their judgement on when
to use goggles.  The goggles can fit right over the safety glasses.

Just my opinion....

Dan Crowl
Michigan Tech

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