Environmental Health and Safety

Laser Safety


Standards for the safe use of lasers and laser systems are provided in American National Standard Institute (ANSI) Z136.1-2014; a copy is available in ISEC 183A. This standard applies to lasers that operate at wavelengths between 180 nanometers (nm) and 1000 micrometers (um). Safe use guidance is based on classification of lasers and laser systems according to their relative hazards and specifying controls for each classification.

Class 3B and Class 4 laser use requirements:

High power Class 3B and Class 4 lasers and laser systems require control measures, user training and a Laser Safety Officer (LSO). Employees and students who will be working with Class 3B or Class 4 lasers must contact the Laser Safety Officer (LSO) (ehs@union.edu) to enroll in the Laser Safety course on Nexus prior to beginning their work.

The LSO and user must also conduct a hazard evaluation for beam and non-beam hazards prior to operation to identify required controls, including personal protective equipment.. A written Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) must be completed and reviewed by all users prior to use and be readily available for reference.