The most important regulations on laser safety from the user’s viewpoint are defined by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). These regulations require the following:
- Only qualified and trained employees should be assigned to install, adjust, and operate the laser equipment. Training of the intended laser operator is generally done by LUDECA laser sales personnel when the unit is installed on the job site. The laser and sensor are permanently mounted into an impact resistant housing. There are no operator installable or adjustable parts. In addition, the laser power is provided by a computer interface regulating pulse and emitter power.
- The contractor must post at least one warning sign (“WARNING, LASER, Avoid Direct Eye Exposure”) in a conspicuous place near where the laser is being used unless otherwise specified by the Laser Safety Officer (LSO).
- The laser beam should be turned off or shuttered whenever the laser is not being used or is left unattended for a substantial period of time.
- Employees should never stare directly into a stationary laser beam or point the laser at another person.
- The laser equipment must bear a label indicating the maximum beam output.
- Class I, non-visible lasers, do not require warning labels.
- Class II, visible lasers, require a warning label “CAUTION, Do not stare into beam”
- The OSHA requirements, for the most part, are common sense, and create a safe environment in which to use a relatively non-hazardous job site tool. In addition to OSHA regulations, some states such as New York, Florida, Texas and Arizona impose additional regulations which the user must satisfy.
All LUDECA laser devices comply with 21 CFR 1040.10 and 1040.11.