DID YOU KNOW? Across Canada, approximately 9,000 workers each year suffer from some form of hearing impairment, including tinnitus (ringing in the ears), due to an overexposure to occupational noise.
OCCUPATIONAL NOISE EXPOSURE REGULATIONS
Hearing loss or damage is one of the most common workplace hazards. Damage can be a result of prolonged or frequent
exposure to loud or high pitched sounds or can be the result of a single incident.
To help protect workers and reduce noise related injury, provincial and federal governments have worked to set occupational
exposure limits varying in relation to noise intensity and risk. The maximum Occupational Exposure Limit (OEL) in Canada is 87
dB(A) with a Maximum Daily Duration of 8 hours. As the allowable noise level increases, the maximum permitted duration
decreases meaning the duration one is exposed to noise must decrease as noise level increases.
WHAT CAN I DO TO PROTECT MY HEARING AND REDUCE RISK OF HARM/INJURY?
Hearing Protection is best started with an assessment. A visit to an audiologist will help determine current auditory health and any care or modification that might be immediately required. From an assessment, an audiologist can make recommendations regarding any customized protection or support that might be necessary.
Following a trip to your audiologist, here are some additional steps you can put in place to minimize risk of harm/injury due to noise…
Improve Your Posture
- Hearing Protective Equipment:
Most PPE providers offer a wide range of protective ear ware. This might include ear plugs which fit fully or partially into the ear canal to block noise, or ear muffs which reduce sound with the use of a cushioned material that fits snug against the ears. PPE can be customized for fit allowing the wearer to be both protected and comfortable!
- Reduce Exposure Time:
Take opportunities to remove yourself from noisy work areas where possible. Enjoying your lunch or breaks inside can be a great way to reduce exposure and enjoy some peace and quiet!
- Watch The Volume :
Often the volume at which we listen to media can add to the noise exposure we experience at work. Take opportunities to reduce volume where possible; maybe turn down the TV or stereo, or even the volume on your phone handset.
- Monitor Your Hearing:
Attend regular checkups and see a doctor immediately if you notice changes in your hearing. Noise related injuries or damage can occur without being immediately noticed.
For more information on Hearing Protection and Occupational Noise Exposure Regulations visit links below…
Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety : http://www.ccohs.ca/oshanswers/phys_agents/exposure_can.html
Health Canada – Environmental and Workplace Health : https://www.canada.ca/en/healthcanada/services/environmentalworkplace-health/noise.html
Canada Safety Council : https://canadasafetycouncil.org/workplace-safety/office-noise-and-acoustics
Looking for support on implementing
Hearing Safe policies in your
workplace? Let us Help!
Remember, you always have a choice, but only you can decide to do it the safe way. The safe way is usually not the shortest or quickest way, but it’s your decision.
BE A ZERO HERO!
Every reasonable precaution should be taken to protect yourself and promote our ZERO ACCIDENTS culture.
PLEASE PLAN TO HAVE A SAFE DAY!