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Table 1: Common UV Sources in the Workplace

  • ISBN: 978-1-4249-9714-5
  • Issued: August 1994
  • Revised: March 2009
  • Content last reviewed: June 2009
  • See also: Heat and Radiation Hazards
Table 1: Common UV Sources in the Workplace
Source Potential for Overexposure Hazard Description For Safety Advice Refer to:
The Sun Very high UV from the sun is highest in spring and summer from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. UV guidelines can be exceeded in 15 minutes on a clear summer day. Clouds may do little to reduce UV levels. Preventing Over- exposure to UV Radiation from the Sun
Electric Welding Arcs Very high Welding arcs can exceed the UV guidelines in seconds within a few meters of the arc. Besides workers, bystanders and passers-by are often overexposed to UV from the arcs. Engineering, Administrative Controls, and Personal Protection
UV Curing Lamps Medium Lamps are usually inside cabinets, but substantial UV radiation can escape through openings. Engineering Controls, Administrative Controls
Black Lights Medium to Low Low-power UV-A lamps used in non-destructive testing (NDT), insect control, and entertainment. Engineering Controls, Personal Protection
Germicidal Lamps High UV-B- and UV-C-emitting lamps used to sterilize work areas in hospitals and laboratories. Engineering Controls, Personal Protection
UV Lasers High Source of intense UV radiation at a single wavelength, with no visible light. Laser Safety Standards (e.g. ANSI Z-136.1)
Lighting Low Most lamps used for lighting are made to emit little or no UV radiation. No precautions needed under normal conditions
Tanning Lamps High These emit mostly UV-A radiation. They must exceed guidelines in order to cause tanning. Not applicable to workers. Use should be discouraged.

Please note that this table is intended as guidance only and is not comprehensive. The actual UV exposure levels in a workplace depend on conditions there. A UV radiation survey is required to determine the actual exposure levels at a particular workplace.