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25 September 2007

The Association of Laser Safety Professionals

The Association of Laser Safety Professionals (ALSP) offers professional Membership to those who are involved in laser safety. The Association's aims are to provide a focus for laser safety expertise within the UK by establishing and maintaining high standards in the provision of laser safety services. Key Members of the Association play a vital role on the National standards-making committees under the umbrella of the British Standards Institution (BSI) as well as internationally on relevant Technical Committees of IEC and ISO.

This important role benefits the laser industry by involving experienced, practising laser safety professionals who have demonstrated to the Association their high-level of knowledge and competence in laser safety. The Members are able to reflect back into the UK's laser community the best practices that have been adopted universally.

The last twelve months have seen major changes to the primary laser product standard IEC 60825-1 Safety of laser products - Part : Equipment classification and requirements. Within this standard (about to be published in the UK as BS EN 60825-1:2007) light emitting diodes (LED's) have been excluded as has the User's guide. This latter subject has been excluded following the publication of IEC TR 60825-14 Safety of laser products Part 14: User's guide - a standard incidentally compiled and project managed by an Association Member. The standard for laser safety within the Telecoms arena - IEC 60825-2 Safety of laser products Part 2: Safety of optical fibre communication systems (OFCS) has also had significant revision to accommodate the rapid technological changes in this field, again under the stewardship of an Association Member.

Perhaps the most visible expansion of laser use to the public is in the medical and cosmetic applications. Many high streets are benefiting from the introduction of lasers and Intense Pulsed Light systems (IPL's) for cosmetic purposes such as hair removal, spider vein removal and similar cosmetic treatments. The Association is providing a valuable service by certificating Laser Protection Advisers (LPA's). The Healthcare Commission (HCC) regulates all laser and IPL installations used within the medical and cosmetic industry and requires that all installations are under the guidance of a certified LPA. The HCC has recognised the Associations qualification and selection criteria for certification of LPA's. The Association's certificated LPA's have all demonstrated their knowledge and competence in risk assessment, laser safety principles, setting up and monitoring safety controls to meet the legislation, promoting safety awareness and contributing to improvements in safety.

Outside the medical field, the knowledge and guidance of the Association's Members continue to provide a significant contribution to laser safety in Industry, Research and Universities. The Association website at http://www.laserprotetionadviser.com gives extended details of the services available.

Contact: Mike Regan
E: mike.regan@ic24.net


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