In situations where glasses fog and impair vision, injuries are taking place not just from impaired vision due to fog but also because individuals are not wearing safety glasses because of having them fog up when they do wear them. A 2009 study published in Accident Analysis and Prevention magazine indicated that construction, manufacturing, service and retail workers neglected wearing safety glasses because of fogging. In fact, fogging is named as the number one vision related reason for not wearing safety glasses. (http://ohsonline.com)
Research is also indicating that anti-fog safety glasses “have been shown to significantly improve performance, resulting in increased eye-protection use.” (A Second Look at Safety Glasses, www.incident-prevention.com). In other words, where fogging safety glasses is named as a reason for not wearing them, many individuals are now wearing safety glasses because of the anti-fog technology.
Clearly, safety glasses with anti-fog technology make a difference with regard to eye safety, and there are certain situations where the need for such technology is essential. The main reasons for choosing to wear safety glasses with anti-fog technology include:
1.) Combating heat and humidity: Any situation involving strenuous activity, heat and/or humidity warrants use of anti-fog safety glasses. High-humidity environments create more moisture, which causes fogging safety glasses. Additionally, high-heat situations increase worker perspiration that leads to additional moisture. Examples include construction, utility, paper industry and power generation industry workers. Athletes also encounter fogging glasses due to heat and humidity not only environmentally but also due to the strenuous activity involved with sport.
2.) Managing sudden environmental changes: Individuals having to go from an air conditioned inside to a hot, muggy outside environment have to contend with fogging glasses. Conversely, going from a cold outside temperature to a heated indoor environment also causes fogging. Examples of professions involving sudden and frequent environmental changes include food service workers who go in and out of coolers, forklift drivers taking loads inside to outside or vice versa when weather is either hot or cold, and police officers and other first responders in emergency situations.
3.) Decreasing fogging frustrations: When trying to efficiently complete a job, fogging glasses cannot only decrease the ability to do work properly, they become a frustration causing many individuals to opt out of even wearing safety glasses in the first place or to remove them when fogging occurs. Unfortunately, both scenarios obviously create additional safety hazards due to unprotected eyes.
4.) Enhancing vision by increasing visibility: Obviously, glasses clear of fog result in clearer vision. This is helpful in a variety of situations, including sporting activities and any job that requires quick reaction and hand-eye coordination.
5.) Improving performance and efficiency: This reason for choosing anti-fog safety glasses is really a combination of the above four reasons. When fogging is managed in any situation where it is an issue, performance and efficiency is likely to increase as individuals are not removing glasses or waiting for the fog to clear before continuing with an activity. Activity can instead be maintained without the frustrating interruption of fogging safety glasses.
Lens coating can significantly impact the effectiveness of safety glasses, especially where fogging is a concern. Anti-fog coatings can help control condensation and keep vision consistently clear. Safety glasses with anti-fog technology can significantly decrease eye injury by increasing the number of wearers of safety glasses and by decreasing frustrating fogging situations.