Occupational hearing loss is one of the most common workplace injuries today. In the United States, nearly 22 million workers are exposed to dangerous noise levels in the workplace, and around 12% of the working population suffer from hearing difficulties (CDC). Some of the most common noise hazards include loud ambient noise, prolonged noise caused by high-power tools, as well as loud music and entertainment sound effects.
To ensure the safety and wellbeing of your employees, here are 3 ways to protect against noise hazards in the workplace.
Replace Loud Equipment
In certain industries like manufacturing, construction, and mining, the use of heavy machinery and high-power tools is inevitable. However, as employers, it is important to inspect work equipment on a regular basis and ensure that the noise level isn’t abnormally loud. Apart from replacing old equipment that is causing excessive noise, it is also a good idea to invest in gadgets like vibration dampers to reduce the internal vibration of machinery and lower its volume.
Enforce the Use of PPE
The use of personal protective equipment is imperative in reducing the risk of injuries in the workplace, including acoustic trauma. When employees are required to work in environments beyond the harmful noise level of 85 dB, it is the employer’s duty to enforce the use of hearing protection equipment and safety devices to protect each employee’s wellbeing.
Limit Employees’ Time Spend in Noisy Areas
Prolonged exposure to loud noises can quickly result in serious hearing damage if no personal protection equipment is used. Especially in industries like construction and mining where employees often have to operate heavy and loud machinery on a daily basis, it is important that their time spent conducting these tasks be reduced to a minimum. To prevent irreversible damages to the ears, employers should restrict the number of hours employees spend near high-decibel noises.
Ready to create a safer work environment for your employees? Head over to Zoro to check out the best hearing protection equipment and safety tools.
Please include attribution to https://www.zoro.com with this graphic.