learn more about how to meet osha's noise exposure standard, and how to control noise pollution at work

Welcome to the 3M Centre for Hearing Conservation

Tools and resources to help employers achieve their hearing conservation program goals

Your hearing conservation program starts here.

Under Work Health and Safety Legislation in Australia, ‘persons conducting a business or undertaking' (PCBU) are required to manage the risk to health and safety due to hazardous noise in the workplace, and must ensure workers are not exposed to workplace noise above the workplace exposure standard (WES) of LAeq,8h of 85 dB(A) or LC,peak of 140 dB(C). The Safe Work Australia Code of Practice: Managing noise and preventing hearing loss at work (2018), provides support for complying with the regulatory noise exposure standard, and The Australia/New Zealand Standards AS/NZS1269 series, provides guidance on all facets of managing noise in the workplace including implementing a Noise Management Program (also known as a Hearing Conservation Program). Whether you are setting up a Hearing Conservation Program for the first time or looking to improve an existing program, 3M can help.

  • The Path to Prevention

    When you’re committed to hearing loss prevention, your workers are more likely to share your dedication and protect their hearing. With world-class, proven detection, protection, communication and validation products, 3M Hearing Solutions is the partner you’ll want with you every step of the way.


  • How do you know your workers' hearing is properly protected?

    Hearing protectors only work when they are inserted correctly and fit the individual's ear canal. With 3M™ E-A-Rfit, you have an easy and effective way of testing and validating each worker's level of noise attenuation. Get the whitepaper to learn how it works

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  • Our whitepaper will show you how to:

    • Get science-based proof that your workers' hearing is protected
    • Validate and choose the right ear plugs or earmuffs for your workers
    • Run and manage a fit test programme using 3M™ E-A-RFit™


3M - Seven Elements of Hearing Conservation

Seven Elements of Hearing Conservation

  • learn more about measuring hazardous noise levels to help protect your workers who are at risk
    Measure

    An effective hearing conservation program begins with measurement. Accurate measurement of an employee's exposure to hazardous noise is essential. A noise assessment (also known as survey) can help identify workers at risk, determine who needs to be included in your program, and select the proper noise control measures and appropriate hearing protectors to help reduce these risks.

    Learn About Noise Measurement

  • learn more about noise control measures to decrease workers' exposure in high noise areas
    Control

    Certain operations and machinery create high noise levels. But do they have to? Equipment and processes can be designed or altered to be quieter, reducing the number of employees in your conservation program.

    Learn About Noise Control

  • one of the 3m hearing conservation program elements is to ensure your workers are protected when they wear their hearing protectors
    Protect

    Hearing protectors play an important role in your hearing conservation program. They must be comfortable, worn correctly, provide adequate protection, and worn throughout the period of exposure to noise. Compatibility with other PPE and the workers' ability to communicate without removing their hearing protectors must also be considered. 3M recommends conducting individual fit-testing of earplugs and earmuffs to help educate workers on the importance of hearing protection, and validate the Personal Attenuation Rating (PAR) for each individual.

    Learn About Hearing Protection

    Hearing Protector Selection

    Hearing Protector Use & Care

  • learn more about hearing checks in the 3m hearing conservation program
    Check

    Are your workers showing symptoms of noise-induced hearing loss? It’s important to routinely use standardised measurement procedures to check their hearing to detect and record changes, so you can take steps to prevent permanent hearing loss.

    Learn About Hearing Checks

    Audiometric Testing Basics

  • learn more about providing your workers hearing protection safety training and educating them about the health effects of noise-induced hearing loss
    Train

    Because noise-induced hearing loss usually happens gradually and the symptoms are not always apparent, it is vital to educate workers on the effects of exposure to loud noise and train them to properly use hearing protection. You may be able to improve the success of your hearing loss prevention efforts by strengthening worker training and motivation programs.

    Learn About Training Programs

  • learn more about recordkeeping of your workers' fit-testing results
    Record

    Keeping confidential, accurate and up-to-date records of noise assessments, actions taken, instrument calibrations, audiometric tests, attenuation ratings and training helps you manage and audit your program. It also helps protect your company and your workers in the long run.

    Learn About Recordkeeping

  • learn more about program evaluations in the 3m hearing conservation program
    Evaluate

    Ensure your hearing conservation program is working with regular program evaluations that include workers' feedback, responsibility reviews, and cost analysis. This will identify trends, magnify problem areas, and drive improvement.

    Learn About Program Evaluations

Highlights of this Centre of Expertise

  • learn more about the components of a hearing conservation program by 3m

    Using the Centre

    As you explore the seven elements of occupational hearing conservation in this program, you will find information and resources in each of these categories:

    •     Key Takeaways – Important points on each topic
    •     Getting Started–Steps to implementing each of the program elements
    •     Requirements – A summary of what employers must do to comply with applicable regulations
    •     Beyond the Basics – Ideas for strengthening your program
    •     Have You Considered?— Questions to generate discussion about the effectiveness of your program
    •     Resources— Links to articles, tools and reference materials

Important Note

This information is based on selected current national requirements. Other country or local requirements may be different. Always consult User Instructions and follow local laws and regulations. This website contains an overview of general information and should not be relied upon to make specific decisions. Reading this information does not certify proficiency in safety and health. Information is current as of the date of publication, and requirements can change in the future. This information should not be relied upon in isolation, as the content is often accompanied by additional and/or clarifying information. All applicable laws and regulations must be followed. 

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