Some Safety Advice for Using Laser Cutting Machinery

15 February 2023
 Categories: Industrial & Manufacturing, Blog

Although accidents with laser cutting are rare, the technique uses powerful lasers which can be harmful if misused. If you are operating a laser cutter, there are some simple safety precautions you need to take to keep accidents to a minimum.


Firstly, make sure that anyone who operates the laser cutter has had adequate training. This training should be provided by a qualified instructor. You should also read the handbook and make sure you are familiar with all the safety instructions within it.

Eye protection

Next, make sure that all operatives have safety goggles for their eyes. Lasers are highly focused beams of light that can seriously harm the eyes if it gets in. An exposure time of a split second is all it takes to cause permanent damage. The best way to protect your workforce is by using safety goggles that have been designed for use with lasers.


Fires are extremely rare if the laser cutter is operated correctly. You may find a small flame occasionally appears, but this should go out very quickly. In case of larger fires, you should keep a fire blanket and a fire extinguisher near the machine. Make sure you switch it off before you attempt to put out any fires, and ensure that your staff are trained in fire safety procedures.


The best way to avoid toxic fumes is to be careful what material you cut. Some materials, such as PVC for example, will give off poisonous fumes and so are not suitable for use with a laser cutter. Never try to cut a substance that is prohibited by the manufacturer's instructions. To increase the comfort and safety of your workers, you may want to install an exhaust fan near the laser cutter.


Finally, make sure that the machine is cleaned regularly. In particular, you should vacuum out any small pieces of debris left behind by the cutting process. Ideally, you should vacuum the internal cavity and the cutting deck after every project. A build-up of debris can lead to fires and can also stop the machine from operating correctly. Pay attention to any other maintenance advice given by the manufacturer. Don't be tempted to cut corners, as this could damage the machinery as well as cause a safety hazard to the operative.

Remember that laser-cutting accidents are very rare. As long as you operate the machine in line with the manufacturer's instructions, you should have no problems with safety.

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