Prevent Hearing Loss and Boost your Protection and Safety

Prevent Hearing Loss and Boost your Protection and Safety

Everywhere you go, it’s a loud and hazardous world for your ears. Paying close attention to noise levels and using hearing protection devices, on the job and off, can help conserve your hearing and boost your protection and safety.

In some ways, it is a matter of personal responsibility off the job. Many workers use power tools, attend loud music or sporting events or participate in shooting sports. All of these occasions are opportunities for exposure to hazardous noise levels. Using hearing protection makes good sense anytime and anywhere there is a noise hazard.

Personal responsibility and company compliance are the big issues on the job. One way responsibility plays into it is for workers to use the hearing protection that is provided. Studies have found that removing a hearing protector even for five minutes during an eight-hour shift degrades the level of protection.

A new tool, the Wear-Time Evaluator, available free from Howard Leight by Sperian, helps demonstrate this effect. The device is a simple disc, one side of which identifies the optimal amount of attenuation a hearing protection device (HPD) will provide over an eight-hour shift if it is removed for various lengths of time.

Removing a 30 NRR earplug for only 5 minutes reduces effective protection to only 26 dB. Remove the earplug for half an hour, and the worker is only receiving 18 dB of effective protection during his or her eight-hour work shift. This loss can easily shift the balance from adequate protection to growing noise-induced hearing loss

The reverse side of the Wear-Time Evaluator is no less valuable. It lists a number of factors to consider when selecting hearing protectors for a workforce, including size, comfort, communication needs and desired noise reduction. By moving the inner disc to each, key selection information is revealed.

Contact IBT Safety for more information about the free Wear-Time Evaluator. The ultimate in safety and protection is available from Sperian, through IBT Safety. Ask you IBT sales rep for more information or email us.

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