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Vertical Window Blinds and Lighting in the Workplace UK

Vertical window blinds are a fantastic and low cost way to keep lighting at the correct level in the workplace. For instance, The Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors report that for staff to work effectively at CRT VDT terminals (cathode ray tube visual display terminals - which a lot of businesses still have), they do at least require, and are legally entitled to be offered as a workable environment lighting levels of about 300 to 500 lux. Adjusting the louvres on the vertical blinds to the just the right angle will help to avoid glare and create the right general level of lighting in the workplace to begin with, before any localised lighting is involved. European health and safety directives concerning lighting in the workplace are have three relevant regulations.

The Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999 basically states that there has to be adequate lighting in the workplace with no shadows or glare, thereby avoiding the risk of people tripping or slipping. Once again, vertical window blinds can be angled to stop glare from the sun, but still let in enough light to prevent shadowy areas.

The Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992 is partly based around the theory that people in the workplace are happier if they can see the surroundings outside. The regulations state that there should be the provision of suitable and sufficient lighting through natural (day)light. Vertical window blinds can be angled to let in just the right amount of natural daylight evenly across the window, and allow views of the outside surroundings.

The Health and Safety (Display Screen Equipment (DSE)) Regulations 1992 talk about reflections and glare properties on the computer screens, the levels in the immediate surroundings, and the fact that operators don’t suffer discomfort from reflections and glare. Vertical window blinds can cut out the glare and allow enough light into the immediate surroundings, particularly if operators are near to the window area.

The CIBSE Guide F Energy efficiency in buildings say that, energy efficient lighting should maximise natural daylight, avoid unnecessarily high illuminance. Lighting can account for over 40% of electricity costs in naturally-ventilated offices. Having the kind of good, natural lighting that vertical window blinds in the workplace offer can reduce running costs, and reduce internal heat gains, thus reducing the need for air conditioning.

Building Regulations Approved Documents L1/L2 state that lighting systems should be reasonably efficient and make effective use of daylight where appropriate. Vertical window blinds can help business to achieve the balance between energy efficiency and the right amount of light, thus having a positive effect on employee efficiency and effectiveness.

There is an important EC Directive which relate to blinds in the working environment. The Construction Products Directive applies to blinds and their safety in use i.e. vertical blinds should be designed and installed so that there are no unacceptable risks in service or operation. Blind Corner have been trading in the vertical window blinds arena for over thirty-five years in the UK, and all blinds are manufactured to meet the highest safety standards and directives.

The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (ROSPA) recommends that "pull cords on curtains and blinds should be kept short and kept out of reach" of children. In the workplace, this could be relevant to e.g. nursery schools, schools or playgroups. Vertical blind operating systems are flexible enough to accommodate this recommendation.

Blind Corner are manufacturers of high quality vertical blinds for the workplace.

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Vertical Window Blinds and Lighting in the Workplace
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