- Keeping the flashlight beam pointed away from the eyes is great flashlight safety.
- Use the lockout setting on your flashlight when you carry it in your pocket to prevent accidental turn on or battery leak.
- Using your flashlight on lower brightness settings will help prevent it from overheating.
- Storing batteries in dry places away from heat or cold temperatures can prevent damage.
Flashlights are great tools and in many situations improve your overall safety. But, just like any other tool, it must be handled properly, or else it can cause harm or injury to yourself or others. Now of course we don’t have hundreds of flashlight-related deaths every year but it is not uncommon for someone to sustain injuries from the misuse of a flashlight.
Avoid Blinding Someone
Flashlights are getting brighter every day. A 1000 lumen output flashlight has become the norm. This is more than enough lumens to temporarily blind someone or potentially cause lasting damage, especially in a dark setting. So when using a flashlight in an area with other people, for proper flashlight safety, be sure to try aiming the beam about waist level in order to avoid flashing someone in the eye with the light.
Now if you are in a situation where you are using a flashlight for self-defense to escape an assailant then aiming the flashlight at their eyes would be the most effective method to stop them or hinder them. In a situation where your life is in danger then you should use the flashlight in a way that increases your chances of safety.
Lockout Modes Prevent Accidental Activations
Another common problem is accidentally leaving the flashlight on when you aren't using it. The potential damage or injury related to this problem is dependent upon where you store your flashlight. If you place your flashlight in your pants or coat pocket while it's still on then you can run the risk of setting your clothing on fire and burning yourself and at the least damaging your clothes.
Sometimes the flashlight can accidentally turn on in your pocket by a button accidentally getting pressed. This is why some flashlights, like the T4K or TM10K, have lockout modes that prevent the flashlights from being turned on by a random button press. These features are great to have on your light for flashlight safety. If your flashlight doesn’t have a lockout mode, then you can try loosening the tail cap so the battery's contact with the tail cap is broken. This way your flashlight will not be able to turn on in your pocket.
Because flashlights are getting brighter and more powerful, they are also using a lot more energy. This sadly leads to many of them heating up a lot faster than they used to. If your flashlight begins to overheat, you can not only burn yourself but cause some serious damage to your flashlight. It's important for flashlight safety to not keep your light on a high setting for an extended period of time if it is not needed. Assess your situation, if you can safely and comfortably use one of the lower settings, it's a good idea too. In doing so you will also conserve your battery in case it is needed for an emergency.
Handle Batteries Properly
The majority of flashlights now use Lithium-Ion batteries because of their ability to allow flashlights to tremendously increase in power while maintaining a compact frame. But just like all batteries, and even more so, Lithium batteries have to be taken care of and handled properly, in order to maximize flashlight safety. Unfortunately, there have been incidents where Lithium batteries have exploded and caused serious damage.
Firstly, it is always the best idea to use the recommended batteries by the flashlight manufacturer. Sure, you might find a deal “too good to be true” elsewhere but those batteries might not be completely compatible with the flashlight or their quality might not be ensured. Be sure to also store spare batteries in a safe place that doesn’t expose them to heat, cold, or liquids. This way you can maximize battery life and prevent any potential accidents.
Flashlight safety is very important because flashlights are extremely helpful if used properly and can also be life-saving. Although flashlight-related accidents yearly are low, they aren’t zero. Also, be sure to check out some of our other helpful blogs like How Many Lumens Do I Need For a Flashlight & The Anatomy of A Flashlight Beam.