Trends in ... lighting


Safety+Health spoke with Dawn Dalldorf-Jackson, director of sales, industrial division, for Eagleville, PA-based Streamlight Inc., to get her thoughts on what’s new in the lighting field and how workers can best stay safe.

Safety+Health: What are some new lighting technologies?

Dawn Dalldorf-Jackson: New trends in professional-grade flashlights are resulting in more safety benefits than ever before. These include high-lumen (500 to 2,000-plus lumens) products that can light up entire work scenes, including potential hazards, and USB-rechargeable products – giving industrial professionals the ability to charge on the go from most any USB power source.

One new trend is lights that include a 18650 USB lithium-ion battery with an integrated micro-USB charging port. These new rechargeable system models are an economical alternative to using disposable batteries, which the lights are also designed to accept to ensure users have power in any situation. Another new trend is flashlights that combine spot and flood beams to create uninterrupted light that eliminate slips, trips and falls. This technology is being incorporated into handheld spotlights, so the light can be used for virtually every long-range and close-up lighting need.

S+H: How are these products/technologies being misused, and how can this be corrected?

Dalldorf-Jackson: The most critical factor that leads to misuse of flashlights is failure of managers to take the time to understand the latest technologies and enhancements. Managers who take the time ... are better equipped to train personnel on these specifics and help maintain a safe working environment. For emergency flashlight equipment, managers must ensure employees are familiar with their location and how they operate; this information should be reinforced through regular training.

To prevent equipment failure, managers must implement routine inspections and testing of flashlight equipment.

S+H: What should be of the utmost importance to workers when it comes to safe lighting?

Dalldorf-Jackson: Workers need to understand which flashlight, lantern or headlamp carries the proper approval ratings for the environment in which they will use it. In the United States, some lights now have safety-rating approval based on the requirements of the ANSI/UL 783 standard – the specific standard for flashlights used in hazardous locations – or ANSI/UL 913, the intrinsically safe standard for general electronic equipment. Although either standard can direct certification to Division 1 level, workers must understand the importance of class, group and temperature code requirements when selecting the correct flashlight for specific applications.

Compiled with the assistance of the International Safety Equipment Association

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