Portable vs Plumbed Eye Wash Stations

Portable vs Plumbed Eye Wash Stations
Portable vs Plumbed Eye Wash Stations

What are they, and when are they useful?

Emergency Eye Wash stations are an important addition to any potentially hazardous workplace. However, knowing which Eye Wash station to choose for a certain job site, can be a difficult process. All emergency eye wash stations are required no more than a ten second distance from a potential hazard. The following document will discuss major differences between portable and plumbed eye wash stations, and the common uses and applications for both.

Plumbed Eye Wash Stations

- A permanent unit, connected to a continuous source of water.

- Positioned in a fixed location, highly unmovable.

- Required to provide sufficient flow and pressure as outlined in Australian Standards – will depend on the specific unit and whether it is an eye wash, eye/face wash or shower unit.

- Available preferably aerated, rather than non-aerated.

- Suitable for larger, or longer term construction sites and work places.


Portable Eye Wash Stations

- A self-contained unit.

- Commonly used on locations without access to an adequate source of water, or on short-term, temporary work sites.

- Movable and portable, adding flexibility that can be useful in a changing work environment.

- Available in various sizes and capacities. These include, but are not limited to:

  • Hand held squeeze bottles - Provides a quick emergency flush. Intended as an interim response to exposure. Will not last for the full 15 minutes, thus must be followed by the use of a primary unit.

  • Gravity-fed eye wash – Will provide a minimum of 15 minutes flushing.

  • Air pressurised units – Filled with suitable flushing fluid and pressurised to provide suitable volume and flow. These units can vary in size, and may or may not be suitable as a primary response unit.

- Available in sizes as little as 500ml to over 80L.

- Suitable for short term or small-scale construction or work sites.


NOTE: Ensure all units purchased comply with Australian Standard AS4775-2007 and the relevant WHS Laws in your Australian State or Territory.