The Laser Safety Officer and a Safe Work Environment

A diagram displaying various breathing devices, NOT related to class 4 laser or glasses.

Laser Safety Officers (LSO) play an essential role in creating a workplace safe for employees and customers. This is a daunting task and that’s why our LSO certification is so important. It demonstrates your commitment to safety which is so important especially during the current pandemic. Whether your business is a metal fabrication shop, a laser eye surgery center, veterinarian clinic or a medspa, understanding the potential for injury from lasers is critical.

Non-beam Hazards

Lasers pose both occupational and biological hazards.  Protection from non-beam hazards, particularly in research labs, include:

  • Adequate ventilation is required to remove noxious and potentially hazardous fumes and vapors like those emitted from laser welding and cutting.
  • Arc and filament lamps and laser welding equipment must be enclosed in housings to withstand the resulting pressure or explosion.  The laser targets or any part which may shatter must also be enclosed.
  • Proper shielding from laser discharge tubes, pumping lamps and laser welding plasmas is mandatory.
  • Aside from radiation created by the laser itself, there are risks associated with some plasma tubes, x-rays and high-voltage power supplies like those used with excimer lasers.    Lasers and laser systems which could generate any of these hazards should be closely monitored.
  • The electric power supply to lasers varies and must be in accordance with OSHA and applicable State codes.
  • Flame-resistant enclosures, particularly for Class IV and some focused Class IIIB lasers, must be used to prevent injury as well.
  • Bodily injuries from lasers and laser systems are eye damage and tissue burns.
  • Lasers are intense, highly focused light beams that can retinal scarring and even permanent loss of sight.   They can occur in microseconds or over several seconds of direct exposure.  Also, photochemical reactions damaging to the retinal tissue can occur when viewing things like solar eclipses and unprotected arc welding can occur.

How can we help?

If a safe work environment is important to you, get started today by clicking on one of our Laser Safety Certification programs.

The steps are easy. Start today by enrolling your company for free.  Select the LSO Course or Kit Bundle that meets your needs– Industrial, Medical/Healthcare or Cosmetic– to get the laser safety training kit to establish your workplace laser safety program.  We are here to answer any questions.   Just email us at or check out our FAQ section for answers to common questions.


Skip to content