We all know that workers in the construction industry risk damaging their hearing if they don’t use adequate protection.
A wide number of tools used regularly by workers are of sufficient volume to cause damage; presses, grinders, CNC punch presses, rubber granulators, sand burners, as well as many, many others.
According to recent surveys, an estimated 18,000 people in the UK have reported suffering from noise induced hearing loss that was either caused or made worse by work, with 120 new claims being made in 2013.
The real figures are believed to be even higher, with nearly a quarter of a million workers suffering from some form of hearing problems as a result of noisy working environments, tinnitus and industrial deafness being the most reported: both, of course, are relevant to the construction industry and safety critical workers.
The total figure for hearing loss in the UK is around 10 million people currently suffering some form of hearing loss: a figure that’s expected to reach 14.5 million by 2031!
As an employer you are required to:
Assess the risks to employees from noise at work
Take action in order to reduce the noise exposure producing the risks
Provide employees with protection
Ensure the legal limits of noise exposure are not exceeded
Carry out health surveillance where there is a risk to health