Training Requirements

Principal investigators and/or laboratory supervisors are responsible for ensuring that all personnel are properly trained before they begin work in a laboratory and that they receive additional training when new hazards or procedures are introduced. For details about what general lab trainings are required see the Laboratory Safety Manual.

Only qualified and authorized personnel are permitted to operate laser systems. Therefore, all Class 3B and Class 4 laser operators are required to complete Laser Safety Training, participate in a medical surveillance program, and complete all required departmental job activity training prior to performing this activity. Laser operators must complete retraining every three years.

Laser Safety Training (Initial)

Iowa State University and Ames Laboratory employees who use class 3B and class 4 lasers are required to complete Laser Safety for Operators training by logging into Learn@ISU and completing the Laser Safety for Operators training. Participants must achieve at least an 80% score on the examination. Training typically takes 1.5 to 2 hours to complete. Retraining is required every three years.

Medical Surveillance

Iowa State University laser operators must submit a completed a Hazard Inventory Form to Occupational Medicine. An initial eye exam is required for laser operators who have had or suspected a prior eye exposure. Contact occupational Medicine at (515) 294-2056 to schedule an eye exam. Medical evaluation is required in the event of an exposure or suspected exposure above the maximum permissible exposure (MPE) limit to either the eyes or skin.

Laser Retraining

Iowa State University and Ames Laboratory employees who use class 3B and class 4 lasers are required to complete retraining every three years by logging into Learn@ISU and completing the Laser Safety Refresher online training. Participants should be able to complete retraining within an hour.

Laser Laboratory Specific Training

In addition to the lab specific training mentioned in the Laboratory Safety Manual, each laser user must be trained on the operation of each laser or laser system by the laser supervisor (principal investigator). This training must cover:

  • SOPs
  • alignment procedures
  • secondary hazards
  • protective equipment
  • other pertinent safety information

A record of training must also be maintained in the laboratory.