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Old 14-06-2014, 11:41   #1
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Please Wear Your Eye Protection

Fifteen minutes ago, I'm working back up in the quarter berth on a friend's boat, alone I might add.

I'm replacing some PVC for the cockpit drains.

Having dry fit my parts, I go to glue up half the job. I apply my glue and think to myself how much it sucks huffing PVC glue fumes crammed up underneath the cockpit.

I awkwardly am reaching around and shoving these parts together and I feel a drip on my eyebrow and think to myself "gee that's odd, you just cleaned and dried the surfaces and inside of pipe, where's the water coming from?"

Two seconds later my brow starts feeling like burning.

Of course it's PVC glue you fxking idiot!

Not five minutes earlier, while rummaging around for sand paper, I ran across some safeties but I was so caught up in the mundanity of my task it didn't even occur to me to put them on. Even though I was working overhead. With friggin PVC glue. Idiot.

And the really sad part is that I should know better.

Years ago, working under an upside down boat I took a silica-and-wood-flour thickened epoxy hit to my left eye. I was filleting a bulkhead in a small compartment that was close to the floor and difficult to reach so I am lying on the ground looking up.

I actually been wearing real goggles up to a point but they were fogging up and in needed to finish the job quick so I took them off. Idiot. Bam!

Suffice it to say I had read the MSDS and frankly, the fact that uncured epoxy hardener invitromutagenicity tests positive was going through my mind while this **** is burning my eyeball. That was the start of a very bad couple weeks.

All I can say is thank god I was working with someone that day, which was not typical of the time, as is the case today. Seriously. No joke. Safety first. From someone who has been there. Please.

PS. I had an eyewash kit when I took the epoxy hit. You should too. Not today. Idiot.
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Old 14-06-2014, 12:33   #2
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Re: Please Wear Your Eye Protection

With all the subjects covered on this forum, personnel safety when working on boats and the inherit hazards that it brings doesn't get enough attention. There are hundreds of posts on safety at sea but very few while working on a boat.
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Old 14-06-2014, 12:40   #3
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Re: Please Wear Your Eye Protection

Good reminder. Thanks.

It always seems like a pain to protect yourself, but it's better than the alternative.
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Old 14-06-2014, 15:34   #4
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Re: Please Wear Your Eye Protection

Overhead work with a cutting torch can be an attention getter too.
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Old 14-06-2014, 16:00   #5
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Re: Please Wear Your Eye Protection

I always used to feel a bit of a twit wearing safety glasses, like I was a bit of a whimp or something, and I got sick of them fogging up when it mattered.

So in the end, I forked for a very good quality set that don't look too dorky and don't fog up and I wear them all the time when working, without hesitation. Ditto a decent pair of earmuffs.

Now if I could just remember to wear gloves more often, my hands would not look like I have just gone ten rounds with a chainsaw.

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Old 14-06-2014, 18:56   #6
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Re: Please Wear Your Eye Protection

Quote:
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Overhead work with a cutting torch can be an attention getter too.

Last time I tried that, it was like sitting under Mt. Vesuvius during eruption break.
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Old 14-06-2014, 21:06   #7
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Re: Please Wear Your Eye Protection

I've learned to reduce eye hazards by 50% with a quick and easy method.

Close one eye!
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Old 14-06-2014, 21:53   #8
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Re: Please Wear Your Eye Protection

Ahh but why reduce visibility when you can use the old time construction trick known as the safety squint, helps if you close your mouth and slightly cock your head back and away from whatever flying debris you are producing. Also works if you have only one set of goggles or face shield and the guy holding your workpiece on the table to stabilize it squints in lieu.
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Old 14-06-2014, 21:54   #9
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Re: Please Wear Your Eye Protection

Of course a failure of the safety squint procedure can result in 100% non refundable loss of vision. Your mileage may vary.
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Old 14-06-2014, 22:49   #10
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Re: Please Wear Your Eye Protection

Quote:
Originally Posted by Delancey View Post
PS. I had an eyewash kit when I took the epoxy hit. You should too. Not today. Idiot.
A bit of info:
Eyewash is just saline (preserved if in a bottle, or unpreserved in unit dose form). Once a preserved bottle is opened, in simple terms it will "go off" (time depends on the storage temperature and what it has been contaminated with).
This is then not the best thing to stick in your eye when it has sustained an injury LOL. Once opened and used, throw it and buy a fresh bottle. It is inexpensive.

In an emergency, use copious amount of water. With an alkali burn (eg from cement powder or cleaning products like oven cleaners or ammonia or drain cleaners) you need a minimum of 10 minutes of flooding the eye. It is easiest to go stand under the shower if you are at home without wasting time undressing and hold your eyelids apart with the water flooding your eye, or use a running tap. Most people don't think of rinsing long enough (or of using tap water) and horrific damage can occur as a result.

Regarding flying particles:
In first world countries the most amount of corneal damage is seen as a group in home handymen. Even if the injury is absolutely minimal each time, with repetitive damage this can dramatically reduce vision if any glare is present (eg night driving). It is not wimpy putting safety specs on. It is plain stupid trying to be macho by not wearing them .
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Old 14-06-2014, 23:10   #11
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Re: Please Wear Your Eye Protection

As a Machinist for over 40 years I can tell you lots of stories about the use of safety glasses.

In the old days they were a joke. It was a false sense of security. The partials would still go between the nose piece or over the top and still get ya. Then they incorporated side shields which made you lose your peripheral vision, so you were always banging your head.

The best I've found to work are the clear plastic slip-overs that go over regular glasses. But face shields are the best, if you can get them in spaces. I have a face shield that I picked up from a Dental supply. It's like a squeeze visor with cheap replaceable lens. Slip it on in a moment then slip it off when out of danger. Very light weight too.


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Old 14-06-2014, 23:40   #12
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pirate Re: Please Wear Your Eye Protection

Looks sorta anti-fog with that much open air around.
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Old 15-06-2014, 00:33   #13
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Re: Please Wear Your Eye Protection

I'm going to use a term many consider bad and that's OSHA. Maybe I'm one of the few businessmen you'll ever hear praise them. But their rules make sense. Everytime I know they found a violation, when I thought about it, they were right. Most of the time it wasn't us as an employer but employees ignoring work rules and us failing to police them adequately. But I'd encourage everyone to take all the precautions that the strictest safety people would recommend. I hear "I've always done it this way and never had a problem" all the time. Well, it only takes once. A serious burn, lost vision, loss of finger. Broken bones, loss of hearing, loss of life. Sailors who take extra precautions when sailing to make sure they don't fall overboard then take chances at the dock where a fall can result in hitting their head on the way to the water. Captains who are very careful when out on the water take chances at dock when working in the engine room. Plus often one is alone when working. Make sure you have a way to call for help. If nothing else keep your cell phone with you. It just takes one time, one mistake, one incident of taking careless short cuts.
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Old 15-06-2014, 00:48   #14
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Re: Please Wear Your Eye Protection

I just invested lots of money in a good quality 3m full face mask due to epoxy sensitivity. Its been the best purchase ever. I should have bought one years ago.

Seems like eyes are real sensitive to epoxy and soak it into the body very fast. Old cured epoxy dust was getting past my foggy goggles and was enough to set off serious swelling itching and pain in my eyes. Now with the full face mask I have no problems and no fogging up. And its much more comfortable than a half face and goggles.

Cheers Ben
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Old 15-06-2014, 00:49   #15
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Re: Please Wear Your Eye Protection

I wish I was more disciplined. I am really bad at eye protection. After 30+ years dicking with jet engines also killed my midrange freq hearing. Weird I can hear a clock tick at 100 paces but i really have to concentrate to hear people speak, especially if any background noise. On second thought maybe that's selective - LOL...

Regarding eyewash I use turps to flush stuff out.

For minor cuts close with super glue. Bigger gashes like circular saw to the bone I pack with fiberglass matt first.

Knowing all these groovy sailor knots make splinting a breeze although sometimes ya gotta drill pilot holes in the bone ends and tie em' back up with nifty sailmaking seams and thread before you shove 'em back in and close with the aforementioned super glue.

Cleanup is important. Dirty hands spread disease. MEK, Toluene, acetone work good but for stubborn stains use paint stripper. If your hands aren't red and blistered after clean up they probably aren't clean.

If you do accidentally let paint dry on your hands a wire wheel in the drill press or hand drill can get those stubborn cuticle areas looking nice and way cheaper mani than the salon.

BTW - you don't need any medicine on board. It is a proven fact the body's immune system will cure anything it can cure. Everything else eventually kills you. Taking meds for anything else just extends your agonizing death. For that you do need anesthetic. The only one needed is rum.
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