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Emergency Eyewash and Shower

The PEOSH Medical Services and First Aid Standard (29 CFR 1910.151(c)) establishes minimum standards for the availability of medical care and first aid, including emergency eyewashes and showers.

The Standard states "where the eyes and body of any person may be exposed to injurious corrosive materials, suitable facilities for quick drenching or flushing of the eyes and body shall be provided within the work area for immediate emergency use."

Factors to consider in determining if an emergency eyewash and/or shower is necessary for a substance include:

  • length of exposure,

  • concentration,

  • quantity, and

  • use of the substance being handled.

Some sources of information that may be helpful in determining health risk include, but are not limited to:

  • the Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS), Safety Data Sheet (SDS), or label issued by the manufacturer stating that an eyewash and/or emergency shower be available;

  • the New Jersey Department of Health, Right to Know Hazardous Substance Fact Sheet stating that an eyewash and/or emergency shower must be available for one or more chemicals present in the workplace.

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