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Lighting and Health Hazards.

NIOSH 1975 Mar:28-33
The health effects of low illumination were reviewed briefly. According to available evidence, none of the organic eye diseases such as glaucoma, cataract, retinal degeneration and other such conditions are affected by the use of the eyes in poor light. The condition known as miner's nystagmus appears to involve many factors other than light, and it has not been encountered in any other occupations. Eyestrain is a psychological condition which occurs in visual tasks performed in difficult conditions. Headache, irritability and nausea may be induced by insufficient illumination or glare, but also by a variety of other conditions such as stress and noise. A survey of tasks performed in government buildings has demonstrated that many of the tasks carried out by the employees involve poor contrast conditions. The author concludes that low illumination is not involved in the occurrence of organic diseases of the eye. In the ensuing discussion when the question of eye damage induced by excessively high levels of lighting was raised, it was pointed out that lighting levels above 20,000 footlamberts actually could damage the eye, although no such luminance is encountered in interior environments.
Lighting-systems; Health-hazards; Human-factors-engineering; Safety-measures; Accident-prevention; Occupational-health; Standards; Eyesight;
Publication Date
Document Type
Conference/Symposia Proceedings;
Fiscal Year
NTIS Accession No.
NTIS Price
Identifying No.
DHEW (NIOSH) Publication No. 75-142
Source Name
The Occupational Safety and Health Effects Associated with Reduced Levels of Illumination. Proceedings of a Symposium, July 11-12, 1974, Cincinnati, Ohio, NIOSH, Division of Laboratory and Criteria Development, HEW Publication No. (NIOSH) 75-142