Laser barcode scanners use a visible and repetitive “flashing” laser light beam, commonly used to track inventory and to enter purchases into a computerized management system. The scanner is a wonderful tool for providing fast and easy customer service in places like supermarkets and restaurants. Most people have seen a laser barcode scanner as scanners have been in use since the mid-1970’s.
Class 2 and 2M laser barcode scanners are considered SAFE if the beam happens to hit the human eye. Blinking and looking away from a bright light source are both a reflex adaptation that humans use to protect the eyes from damage. BUT- consider this:
- Physical limitations may cause some people the inability to blink quickly, to avert their eyes, or to turn their head away from the laser beam, causing pain and discomfort, or even temporary impairment of vision.
Consider people whose line of vision is counter-top level or other reasons their eyes are more sensitive to a Class 2 or Class 2M laser beam-
- Wheelchair-bound people, children, and people who are short in physical stature.
- People with special health issues that make their eyes especially sensitive.
- People who may become dizzy or suffer from a seizure disorder while peering at a flashing light.
- Certain prescription lenses that magnify or amplify the effects of a laser beam.
The laser barcode scanner may be safe for most human's eyesight but exceptions are always a possibility! Businesses can better serve their clientele by assuring all laser barcode scanners are pointed down,or away from the line of vision, or shielded so not to hit people with the laser beam at eye level.
Source: ANSI Z136.1-2014, Laser Institute of America, 2014
Contact: Kimberly Morris at 937-775-2169