If you need noise survey assistance as discussed in this article call us at 615-406-0497 or email us at DrMike@KSAHEARINGCONSERVATION.COM for details and a free estimate or go to our website at KSA HEARING CONSERVATION LLC
Noise Dosimetry Surveys
February 5th, 2018
Whether they are subjected to a constant sound or high intensity bursts of loud sounds throughout the day, employees in noisy workplaces are at risk of permanent damage to their hearing. For a noisy workplace, having a Hearing Conservation Program is imperative to protecting both employee health and employer liability.
How to start? Determining the appropriate type of protection for each employee and area can be daunting, because individual employees may have varying levels of exposure to different sounds throughout the day and exposed in different areas over a typical 8 hour workday.
The best way to determine the volume, frequency and length of noise exposure to each employee—or employee function—is through a noise dosimetry survey or noise dosimetry testing/sampling.
A noise dosimeter is a small, shoulder-mounted unit that is amazingly compact and lightweight; these breakthrough safety tools are designed to measure the noise an employee is exposed to over the working day to uncover dangerous areas, as well as to assure compliance with strict national and international regulatory compliance protocols. The device is worn throughout an entire 8-hour shift, measuring sound at ear level, and determining the average exposure level per shift for that individual.
Note that a noise dosimeter is not a recorder but only a sound level meter that takes a reading at ½ to 1 second intervals and accumulates the measurements over the time worn by the worker.
Each factory and company has unique characteristics, employees and processes. Each factory also has federal, state and local regulations to consider. An experienced tester is able to choose the appropriate noise dosimeter to be used, calibrate it before and after use, and provide results in a clearly written and comprehensive report.
Based on the results, a Hearing Conservation Program can be developed or modified. Noise dosimetry surveys provide employers with the information needed in order to require workers to wear the most effective and least disruptive personal protective equipment designed for each specific function.
An important compliment to noise dosimetry is to develop a noise map of the work area. This will identify noisy areas that can be the target of noise reduction efforts should OSHA compliance be an issue.
Written by Dr. Michael Tigges
Dr. Michael Tigges is a Certified Occupational Hearing Conservationist and Certified in Noise Measurement including designing and conducting noise dosimetry surveys or noise dosimetry testing in a wide variety of industrial settings. Dr. Tigges also provides occupational safety services to include OSHA Compliant Annual Hearing testing, Certified Drug & Alcohol Testing and Federally Certified DOT Physicals both on-site and in his offices located in Gallatin and Murfreesboro, TN.
To discuss your particular needs and obtain a complimentary proposal, contact him at 615-406-0497 or email him at DrMike@ksahearingconservation