Stay Safe in the Noise
Working in the building trades is noisy. In recognition of National Protect Your Hearing Month, check out these quick tips to keep you safe on the job site.
You have a right to know what the noise levels are on your job site. At 85 decibels (dB) and above, the work is high noise, and you need to wear hearing protection. If you are unsure about the level of noise you are experiencing at work, make sure to ask your job site steward or foreman.
WAYS TO REDUCE NOISE:
Wear hearing protection
Create noise barriers on the job site
Reduce your time in noise by trading off noisy and quiet tasks with someone else
Relocate to get away from the noise
HOW DOES HEARING PROTECTION HELP?
Reduces noise to safe levels
Makes it easier to hear machinery or talk to coworkers
Reduces background noise
Keeps dirt and water out of ears
YOU HAVE OPTIONS:
Hearing protection is not a one size fits all solution.
Much like shoes, they are a unique fit for you and your working environment.
If your hearing protection hurts or makes it hard to talk or hear, it is time to try something different.
KEY INDICATORS OF HIGH NOISE WORK:
You have to raise your voice or shout to be heard
You experience “hear-burn” with temporary muffled hearing or ringing of the ears
I’ve already lost some hearing, so it doesn’t matter.
I can’t tell when it’s too loud.
It’s loud, but there’s nothing I can do about it.
This is noisy, but I’m not doing it long enough to need hearing protection.
I’m used to the noise.
YOUR HEARING PROTECTION IS WORKING IF IT IS:
Easy to use properly
Blocking enough noise for safety without limiting the information you need to still hear
Allows you to communicate
Not cotton, wax, or regular headphones
Snug and secure
Learn more about noise and hearing loss prevention from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.