UCL Department of Electronic and Electrical Engineering
Staff/Student Intranet

Laser injuries

For immediate ocular injury accidents where there is an apparent eye injury:

  • The casualty should be sat in an upright position, rather than laying down, to avoid debris settling on the retina.
  • If the injuries are severe enough to induce shock in the casualty, then normal First Aid procedures for the treatment of shock override this consideration.

Any equipment and laser systems involved must be isolated pending a full investigation by the Laser Safety Officer and Department Safety Officer.

DO NOT CONTINUE WORKING with the system that caused the accident.

If there is an apparent or suspected injury to the eye, the injured person should see a specialist ophthalmologist at the as soon as possible, and definitely within 24 hours.

  • The injured person should not drive and should be accompanied by a colleague. They should be transported in an ambulance if necessary.
  • If an ophthalmologist is not available at the University College Hospital A&E, the injured person should be sent within 24 hours to Moorfields Eye Hospital where the medics are experienced in dealing with laser eye injuries.

Details of the laser beam should accompany the casualty to hospital.  These should include type of laser system, classification, wavelength, power/energy per pulse and pulse duration. You should keep a copy of this information readily available in the laboratory in case of emergency.

An accident report must be filed with Safety Services. The Laser Safety Officer must also report any injury to UCL Health & Wellbeing to ensure follow up for the injured person.

University College Hospital

Accident and Emergency Department
Grafton Way,

Moorfields Eye Hospital

Accident and Emergency Department (open 24 hours a day)
162 City Road,

Nearest Underground Station: Old Street, Northern Line.