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Welder's Flash

What Does Welder's Flash Mean?

Welder’s flash is an eye condition that occurs from intense exposure to ultraviolet rays from the electrical arc that wielding machines emit. Welder’s flash is similar to a sunburn on the skin, but it affects the corneas of the eyes. Pain does not usually present itself until several hours after exposure. Symptoms include weeping of the tear duct, a gritty feeling in the eye socket and a general feeling of eye pain.

Safeopedia Explains Welder's Flash

This injury is likely to be the result of not wearing the appropriate eye protection when working with equipment that will emit ultraviolet radiation. Health and safety experts recommend wearing specially manufactured wielding goggles and a helmet when dealing with such machinery. If you or a colleague is suffering from welder’s flash, the appropriate first aid would be to remove the patient from any light source and flush the eyes with an appropriate eye wash or saline solution. It is important to see a doctor as soon as possible to ensure no serious damage has been done to the cornea.


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