Environment of Care (CAMCAH / Critical Access Hospitals)
Q: How often do eyewashes need to be inspected or flushed?
Eyewashes - Frequency of Flushing
Updated | November 24, 2008
A: Based on the requirements of the ANSI Z358.1-2004 Standard, the Joint Commission would expect organizations to formulate their own rationale for frequency, write it in policy, and follow the policy. If the organization has defined a frequency substantially less than is generally observed, then documentation should be available to support the rationale. Organizations typically select frequencies of weekly, monthly or quarterly.
Several differing frequencies for flushing eyewash stations have been published in some noted resources. Under OSHA's Chemical Hygiene Plan, Appendix A of CFR1910.1450, section (D)(4)(c), there is a non-mandatory recommendation to perform eyewash checks at least every three months. In a Hazard Information Bulletin published by the Department of Energy (DOE) on 12/23/86 and titled "Potentially hazardous amoeba found in Eyewash Stations", there is a recommendation to flush eyewash stations for at least three minutes on a weekly basis. Organizations should consider resources such as these when developing their policy.
View OSHA's 29 CFR1910.1450 Appendix A
View OSHA's response to the DOE Hazardous Information Bulletin.