August 2008

BLS News & Review

Volume 2, Number 3

In This Issue

BLS Links

Useful Links

- ANSI Z136

Board of Laser Safety
13501 Ingenuity Drive, # 128

Orlando, FL 32826
Ph: 407-380-1553
Ph: 800-34LASER

Website | E-mail

Executive Director's Message

After a week of constant rain, incredible winds, and no school, it’s hard to think about much more than tropical storm Fay.  But if I think back to just a few weeks ago, I can remember the crisp, clear blue skies over Albuquerque during the 4th Annual LSO Advanced Training Workshop.

Not only was the weather cooperative, the folks at Sandia went out of their way to accommodate the attendees, speakers and vendors.  From all accounts, this was the best attended, most successful workshop to date (see LSO Workshop Wrap-up for details).  My favorite part of the workshop?  Having the opportunity to meet so many of you face-to-face and the time to visit with friends and colleagues.

Couldn’t make the workshop?  Start planning now to attend the 2009 International Laser Safety Conference, to be held March 23-26, in Reno, Nevada.  While many of you already know that ILSC is “the” laser safety conference – covering topics such as safety standards and practices worldwide, the latest research into the biological effects of the eye and skin, laser safety in various environments, and control of laser hazards, an innovative new component is the Laser Safety Practical Applications Seminar.  Developed with the LSO in mind, the seminar features practical information for dealing with a wide range of day-to-day laser safety issues (see ILSC 2009 Update for more information).

Please enjoy this issue of the BLS News & Review and feel free to contact me anytime at or by phone, 407-380-1553.

Barbara Sams
Executive Director

Welcome new CLSOs and CMLSOs

Tom Hakala Sperian Protection, Inc.
Jeremy Marks Accellent - Salem
Jon Meyer Spudnik, Inc.
Brad Morrison Clarion Medical Technologies
Lynette Lakshmeena Santa Ana Skin Care Clinic
John Sakaris UT MD Anderson Cancer Center

Go to the BLS website to view complete listings of CLSOs and CMLSOs.

Profile of CLSO/CMLSO

LSO Workshop Wrap-Up

The 2½ day, 4th Annual LSO Advance Training Workshop just completed at Sandia Labs was the most successful in the series.  The event was co-hosted by Sandia and Los Alamos National Laboratories, with attendance peaking at 161.  Also participating were ten vendors with tabletop displays (see below).  Dinner the first evening was a sponsored BBQ by Kentek Corporation.

The goal of the Workshop is to present review material, as well as cutting edge laser technology/ applications, and to support presentations on topics that while are important seem to receive limited exposure. Some of the highlights of this year’s program were thorough reviews of outdoor and military laser use, as well as the laser accident investigation of the LANL July 2004 laser incident. Tim Hitchcock provided a tutorial on broadband light sources, and many were surprised by the number of deaths involved in fiber optic instillation that was mentioned in Larry Johnson’s (Light Brigade) talk on fiber optics.

The ANSI Accredited Standards Committee’s Z136.6 (Outdoor) and Z136.8 (R&D) subcommittees met in conjunction with the workshop. Plans are already underway for next year’s workshop (with a possible medical day and breakout sessions) according to Ken Barat, Workshop Director.

During breaks, attendees were able to meet with vendors to discuss solutions to today’s problems and tomorrow’s potential needs.
Networking opportunities abounded! CLSOs Bob Sarason, Candace Soles, Eddie Ciprazo


VA to Reimburse the Cost of LSO Certification for Veterans


The reimbursement of fees associated with becoming a Certified Laser Safety Officer (CLSO) and Certified Medical Laser Safety Officer (CMLSO) has been approved for veterans’ benefits by the State of Florida, Department of Veterans’ Affairs.

In March 2001, the VA established rules to allow the cost for certifications and licenses to qualify for VA reimbursement. Under the GI Bill, if veterans qualify, the VA will reimburse them for taking a license or certification test. Recently, the CLSO and CMLSO certification exams were added to its list of approved tests.

“This is an excellent opportunity for veterans to utilize their reimbursement benefits to gain a competitive edge in their workplace,” said Barbara Sams, BLS Executive Director. “Becoming a CLSO or CMLSO validates their level of competency and enables them to achieve higher recognition as a Laser Safety Officer.”

BLS certification demonstrates that individuals serving in the field of laser safety have met the qualifications of education and experience, in addition to successfully passing the laser safety certification examination. It can play a key role in career advancement, and reentry into the work force.

Veterans who are interested in obtaining reimbursement for the CLSO and CMLSO certification programs must submit an application at for approval. Certain standards must be met in order to qualify.

Special LIA Membership Rate for CLSOs and CMLSOs

The Laser Institute of America (LIA) is currently offering a special membership rate only available to CLSOs and CMLSOs – 3 years for $225! 

As you know, maintaining certification is an important and vital part of becoming a CLSO or CMLSO. Membership in a laser safety related professional or technical organization or society earns valuable certification maintenance (CM) points, with a maximum of 3 CM points total per 3-year term (1 CM point given per year of membership).

By taking advantage of the LIA membership offer (in addition to fulfilling the CM requirement), you can stay abreast of current industry and technology changes through:

  1. Peer-reviewed technical articles in your complimentary subscription to the Journal of Laser Applications® which includes free access to all articles online (an excellent publication forum for your technical work as well).
  2. Industry news received through your complimentary subscription to the LIA Today.
  3. Attendance at LIA conferences, e.g., the International Laser Safety Conference, with a substantial discount on registration.

Sign up by downloading this application form, completing and submitting to LIA or call the LIA office at 407-380-1553.

ILSC® 2009 Update

What – 2009 International Laser Safety Conference
When – March 23-26, 2009
Where – John Ascuaga’s Nugget Resort Hotel, Reno, NV
Who – You!

  1. Learn from laser safety experts, who discuss their research; address recent developments in regulatory, mandatory and voluntary safety standards worldwide; and provide relevant data on topics ranging from bioeffects to outdoor lasers, from laser safety training to protective measures, from non-beam hazards to measurements (ILSC track).
  2. Participate in practical interactive workshops and panel discussions addressing the more common safety issues and concerns of day-to-day operations (Practical Applications Seminar track).
  3. Network with the pioneers of the laser safety industry, as well as your fellow CLSOs and CMLSOs; and meet with safety vendors to problem-solve and examine new products.


  1. Contribute to the success of ILSC 2009 by presenting a paper or workshop and earn valuable CM Points in the process!  Click here to download the Call for Papers; the abstract submission deadline is September 8.
  2. Volunteer to moderate and/or suggest current subject matter for the Hot Topics Luncheon.
  3. Attend ILSC 2009 and earn one CM Point for each day in attendance!

Questions – please contact Barbara Sams if you have any questions or suggestions, or 407-380-1553.

BLS Merchandise Is Here!

Casual Fridays? Wear your BLS polo and show your pride!

Download our BLS Merchandise Form, complete and return to the BLS, fax: 407-380-5588 or call 407-380-1553.

Don't hesitate, order today!



My Traveling ANSI

Where has your ANSI been?
Submit your photos to

Kim Merritt at ILSC 2005
Marina del Rey, CA