Of all the causes of eye injury, gunshot has recently been cited as resulting in the highest rate of blindness and the lowest rate of visual recovery. Many of these cases are hunting accidents in which safety glasses could have prevented or lessened ocular damage. To evaluate the effectiveness of various types of safety glasses, we fired a Remington automatic shotgun at mannequin heads fitted with one of four types of safety lenses. From a distance of 10 yards, only polycarbonate lenses provided even partial protection. At 30 yards, polycarbonate and heat-treated lenses provided the best protection, whereas chemically treated and CR39 lenses provided significantly less protection. We recommend that hunters using shotguns in areas of poor visibility wear widely available polycarbonate safety glasses as well as "hunter's orange" to minimize their risk of devastating ocular gunshot injury. © 1988 Southern Medical Association.