We encounter many different types of workplace noise and need to think about how that noise impacts our hearing. Many working environments not only make it more difficult for workers to hear but also can have detrimental effects on their hearing.
An estimated 12 percent of the U.S. working population has hearing difficulty and approximately 24 percent of hearing difficulty is caused by occupational exposure. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control estimates that 22 million workers are exposed to hazardous noise.
A new video from the Council for Accreditation in Occupational Hearing Conservation (CAOHC) provides safety professionals with a training tool to teach workers about the hazards of workplace noise and the effects of overexposure. The video, Workplace Noise: Measurement and Controls, explains different types of workplace noise, reviews the purpose of noise measurement and control strategies and discusses the difference between administrative and engineering controls.
“I see this video being a help to two groups of people,” says Brent Charlton, CSP, CAOHC council member and project manager for the video. “First, our hard-working course directors, as they’ll have a low-cost, easy-to-use “outside expert” to teach noise measurement and physics of sound. Second, I think the video will be a source for safety professionals like myself to educate their workforce, managers and new safety professionals.”
The video contains six learning modules, each covering a different aspect of workplace noise:
1. Characteristics of Sound
2. Enter the Decibel
3. Time-Weighted Average
4. Permissible Exposure Limit
5. Noise Control Strategies
6. Measuring Noise.
The project was a collaboration between experts representing various organizations including ASSP, Institute of Noise Control Engineering, American Industrial Hygiene Association, Military Audiology Association and American Academy of Audiology.
Hearing Conservation in Construction: Listening to New Perspectives on an Old Problem
Hearing Conservation: Effectively Preventing Noise-Induced Hearing Loss
Noise Exposure: The Need for New Measurements on Aircraft Carriers
Can You Hear Me Now? Assessing noise exposure and implementing successful hearing loss interventions
ANSI/ASSP A10.46, Hearing Loss Prevention for Construction and Demolition Workers
ANSI B11.TR5, Sound (Noise) Level Measurement Guidelines