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Ordinary Things Can Cause Extraordinary Injuries
06/05/2002

When most people go out to mow the lawn, jump-start the car or gear up to do some serious spring cleaning, the last thing they think about is their eyes but it should be one of the first.

According to the U.S. Eye Injury Registry, 43 percent of eye injuries occur within the home. But 90 percent of these injuries are preventable if you take safety precautions and use a little common sense. Many times, all that’s needed to prevent vision loss and blinding injuries is a pair of tight-fitting goggles available at hardware stores.

Everyone should keep a pair of goggles in the trunk for when they need to jump-start a car. Battery acid, sparks and debris flying from damaged or improperly jump-started auto batteries can severely damage the eyes.

Many household chemicals, such as cleaning fluids, detergents and ammonia, are extremely hazardous and can burn the eye’s delicate tissues. When using chemicals for home improvement, always read instructions and labels carefully, work in a well-ventilated area and make sure spray nozzles point away from you and others before spraying. After use, wash your hands thoroughly. Goggles are advisable, especially when spraying or splashing is involved.

Before using a lawn mower, power trimmer or edger, be sure to check for rocks and stones in addition to putting on your goggles. Stones, twigs and other debris can become dangerous projectiles when shooting out of the blades of a lawn mower, potentially injuring your eyes or those of innocent bystanders.

Prevention is the first and most important step in avoiding serious eye injuries, so be sure to protect your eyes with appropriate protective eyewear.

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