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Toolbox Talk: Lighting Conditions

By November 9, 2020 No Comments

Lighting Conditions

Lighting plays an essential role in defense against accidents and injuries in the workplace. When lighting conditions are optimal, it can increase productivity while improving the quality of work. Optimal lighting provides workers with an environment where they can clearly read labels and instructions; allowing workers to identify tripping hazards and perform tasks at hand safely.

Identifying Lighting Needs

  • Replace bulbs on a regular schedule, replace them before they burn out and follow manufacturers’ instructions
  • Clean light fixtures regularly
    • Dirty light fixtures give off less light and can become a fire hazard
  • Use more reflected light and local lighting to eliminate dark areas

Amount of Light

The amount of lighting needed in the workplace varies. It depends on the tasks being performed, as well as the individuals involved.

Variables include:

  • Type of task being done
  • Type of surfaces (Does it reflect or absorb light?)
  • Individual’s vision
  • Time of year
  • Natural light conditions

Reminder: head lamps cannot be main source of lighting.

Choosing Temporary Lighting

  • How high are the ceilings?
  • Will the light reach the ground?
  • How many rooms need light?
  • Is it a wet environment?

There are many different types of temporary lighting available to illuminate jobsites. It is important to discuss the lighting product that is needed to find the one best suited to the space being used. A few examples of temporary light include:

  • String/cord lights (stringers)
  • Balloon lights
  • Floodlights
  • Hand lamps
  • Wobble lights

Things to Remember

  • Protect the lightbulbs from breaking or being contacted by installing “bird cages”
  • Do not hang lights by their cords unless they are designed to do so
  • Dead, missing, or low-watt bulbs; as well as inadequate power and blown fuses can leave stairwells, basements, and other areas poorly lit or with no lighting at all, increasing the risk of injury
  • Ladders, pipes, scaffold frames, and other objects can bump stringers, leading to electrical contact and shock
    • Keep string lights out of doorways as steel door frames


Remember, safety is built one step at a time!

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