Frequently Asked Questions
Why Wear Safety Glasses?
Whether you’re at work or at home, hazards to your eyesight are ever present. In fact, you may be surprised to learn that 63% of the 10,000 eye injuries that happen every day in North America happen at home or during recreational activities–according to the CDC and Department of Labor. Of the 10,000 daily eye injuries, approximately 2,000 require medical treatment. These statistics only underscore the importance of wearing impact-resistant eye protection. When a piece of debris comes flying off your garage project, or a drop of oil or paint falls toward your face, or a tool slips off a fastener and comes for your eye, or any other number of daily hazards strike, you want to know your eyesight is safe behind a pair of ANSI Z87.1-rated glasses. The problem is, you never know exactly when you’ll need to wear impact-resistant glasses. But that’s the hint to the question of why it’s so important to wear safety glasses. It’s important to wear safety glasses because you never know when the unexpected will happen; and you don’t want to be another eye-injury statistic. Plus, protecting your eyes from harmful UV rays is critical to avoid macular degeneration and other similar vision-impairing disorders (just make sure your safety glasses block at least 99% of UVA, UVB and UVC rays).
What are Safety Glass Lenses Made Of?
In order to meet ANSI’s Z87.1 or Z87.1+ requirements, safety glasses need to be able to take impacts that replicate those that may be experienced by projectiles on a jobsite or while doing projects at home. Glass lenses can shatter when faced with these impacts. So, too, can regular plastic lenses (commonly made out of a compound known as CR-39). However, there’s one material that’s both incredibly impact resistant and optically correct. That material is polycarbonate. This is a type of plastic, but unlike CR-39, doesn’t run when things get tough. Polycarbonate is lightweight, resists impacts and naturally defends against UV radiation. In short, polycarbonate is a perfect material for safety glass lenses–and it’s all Edge uses in its lineup of eyewear.
What Does ANSI Z87.1 Mean?
The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) is a US organization that writes requirements of equipment used in a wide array of industries. These requirements, among other things, ensure the safety of the tested equipment, and are enforced by the Occupational Safety and Health Organization (OSHA). The Z87.1 section of ANSI standards outlines the requirements of personal eye and face protection. Under the Z87.1 section, ANSI has defined a number of classifications of eyewear and personal protective equipment–based on the reasonably expected hazards and testing protocol of each to satisfy the protective needs, according to those risks. Each safety glass frame and lens will be marked with the appropriate classification, according to its compliance with the written standard. For instance, a “Z87” mark is the basic ANSI impact rating. However, a “Z87+” mark indicates a high-velocity impact rating. Other ANSI lens and frame markings denote features of a safety glass or extra protective functions. For more information about the current ANSI Z87.1 standards, visit here.
What Does UV Do to Your Eyes?
Ultraviolet radiation (UV) comes from the sun and artificial light sources (including, importantly, halogen lights commonly used on jobsites) and can damage your eyes. According to Johns Hopkins Medicine, UV light can cause corneal damage, cataracts and macular degeneration–all of which lead to vision loss. We all know how important it is to use sunscreen or wear long sleeves to protect ourselves from the sun’s damage to skin (which can lead to certain cancers), but it’s just as critical to defend our eyes. Make sure to choose safety glasses that block at least 99% of UVA, UVB and UVC radiation. Whether you’re working indoors or out, these UV-blocking glasses can help preserve your eyesight and, ultimately, provide a cooling relief for your eyes.
What are Polarized Safety Glasses?
Polarized lenses help filter harsh reflection and cut down on glare. Safety glasses protect your eyes from projectiles and airborne debris with tested and certified impact resistance. Now, mix glare-blocking polarized lenses with shatter-resistant safety glasses. Voila! A magical product that both keeps your day free from glare and can save your eyesight in case of the unexpected. And Edge pioneered polarized safety glasses. We were the first to bring the light-filtering power of polarized lenses to the safety glass market. Whether you’re working around concrete, on a roof, banging tin or near other highly-reflective materials, polarized safety glasses can keep you safe from the sun’s harsh rays and any accidents. Plus, we offer our permanent anti-fog technology in a select number of our polarized safety glasses.