The following advice on the use of interactive whiteboards has been issued by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE):
Computer projectors, which are used to show presentations or to illuminate whiteboards, can expose the eye to levels above one of the exposure limits which the HSE uses as a guide for compliance with applicable legislation. Therefore, although such exposure limits are not statutory, the HSE considers the following advice to be good practice in respect of the use of these projectors by employers in the education sector.
Employers should establish work procedures for teachers/lecturers and pupils/students and give instruction on their adoption so that:
- Staring directly into the projector beam is avoided at all times;
- Standing facing into the beam is minimised. Users, especially pupils and students, should try to keep their backs to the beam as much as possible;
- In this regard, the use of stick or laser pointers to avoid the need for the use to enter the beam is recommended;
- Pupils and students are adequately supervised when they are asked to point out something on the screen;
- Employers should also try to ensure that projectors are located out of the sight line from the screen to the audience; this ensures that, when the presenters look at the audience, they do not also have to stare at the projector lamp. The best way to achieve this is by ceiling-mounting rather than floor or table-mounting the projector.
In order to minimise the lamp power needed to project a visible presentation, employers should use room blinds to reduce ambient light levels