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OSHA InfoSheet: Preventing Eyewash Station Contamination

Friday, September 11, 2015

Health Effects from Contaminated Water in Eyewash Stations

Eyewash stations used in workplaces must be maintained to prevent injury and illness to workers. This InfoSheet provides updated information on eyewash station hazards.

Eyewash stations are critical emergency safety equipment intended to mitigate eye injuries when control methods do not prevent exposure to a physical or chemical irritant or a biological agent. The ANSI standard for eyewashes specifies that eyewashes must be capable of delivering tepid flushing fluid to the eyes not less than 1.5 liters per minute (0.4 gpm) for 15 minutes after a single movement and subsequent hands-free operation. Whether the eyewash station is permanently connected to a source of potable water (i.e., plumbed) or has self-contained flushing fluid, improper maintenance may present health hazards that can worsen or cause additional damage to a worker’s eye.

View the OSHA InfoSheet here.

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