Noise-induced hearing loss is 100% preventable.
The Australia/New Zealand Standards AS/NZS1269 series provides guidance on managing workplace noise, while AS/NZS 1269.3 specifically describes how to conduct an effective hearing protector programme. Whether you’re starting or improving upon your company’s hearing conservation programme, 3M has holistic solutions that safeguards workers from hazardous noise.
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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When you’re committed to hearing loss prevention, your workers are more likely to comply and take responsibility for their hearing. Get started by implementing these seven elements of an effective Hearing Conservation Programme. 3M recommends these holistic solutions based on both OSHA requirements and NIOSH best practices recommendations.
Accurate measurement of employee exposure to hazardous noise is essential. Conducting noise surveys using 3M Detection Solutions can help you identify who is at risk, determine who needs to be included in your program and select the proper controls and protective equipment to help reduce the risks.
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.
Hearing protectors play an important role in hearing conservation. They must be comfortable, fit properly and provide adequate protection for the environment. Compatibility with other PPE and the workers’ ability to communicate must also be considered. Including individual fit testing of earplugs and earmuffs in your program can help you educate your employees on the importance of hearing protection and validate the Personal Attenuation Rating (PAR) achieved by each worker.
Because noise-induced hearing loss usually happens gradually and the symptoms are not always apparent, it is vital to educate employees 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.
Keeping confidential, accurate and up-to-date records of noise surveys, actions taken, instrument calibrations, audiometric tests, attenuation ratings and training helps you manage and audit your program. And helps protect your company and your employees in the long run.
Make sure your hearing conservation program is working with regular program evaluations that include employee feedback, responsibility reviews and cost analysis. This will identify trends, magnify problem areas and drive improvement.
As you explore the seven elements of occupational hearing conservation 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
This information is based on selected current national requirements. Other State 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.