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Section X

Control Measures for all Laser Classes

The purpose of control measures is to prevent exposure to laser radiation above the MPE. Use engineering controls whenever possible. When engineering controls are not able to reduce exposure below the MPE, administrative controls and personal protective equipment should be used.

  1. Protective Housing
    • Place lasers in protective housings whenever practical. When protective housings are not practical, the LSO shall perform a hazard analysis to ensure that control measures are implemented to ensure safe operation.
    • Protective housings or service panels enclosing embedded Class 3b and 4 lasers shall be interlocked or fastened closed requiring special tools for removal.
    • When it is necessary to remove protective housings or service panels, a temporary laser controlled area shall be established. A temporary laser controlled area will not have the built-in protective features that are part of a laser-controlled area, but shall provide all safety requirements to protect personnel within and outside the area. Requirements for the temporary laser controlled area include, but are not limited to:
      1. Restricted access to the area.
      2. Control of the beam to prevent the beam and reflections from extending beyond the area.
      3. Removal of reflective materials in and near the beam path.
      4. Appropriate laser eye protection if there is a possibility of exposure to laser radiation above the MPE.
      5. A warning sign posted outside the area. (See Section XIX for the warning sign requirements.)
  2. Collecting Optics
    Collecting optics used to view the laser beam or its interaction with a material shall have permanently attached attenuators, filters or shutters to prevent hazardous levels of radiation from entering the eye.
  3. Beam Control
    • Ensure the beam height is not at the normal eye position of a person in a standing or seated position.
    • Position the laser so that the beam is not directed toward doorways or aisles.
    • Securely mount the laser system to maintain the beam in a fixed position during operation and limit beam movements during adjustments.
    • Ensure beam path is well defined and controlled.
    • Terminate the beam at the end of its useful path.
    • Confine beams and reflections to the optical table. The addition of beam-stopping panels to the sides of the optical table is recommended.
    • If the beam path extends beyond the optical table, a physical barrier shall be used to prevent accidental exposure.
    • Have only diffusely reflecting materials in or near the beam path, where feasible.
    • Absorb unwanted reflections. Scatter is not permitted.

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