If you work in a loud environment, you may be worried about suffering hearing loss. You have good reason to be concerned: total permanent hearing loss cannot be corrected through surgery or hearing aids. However, your employer can take steps to minimize your risk of suffering damage to your ears.
Four Steps Your Employer Could Take to Reduce the Noise Level on the Job
Controlling the noise level is one of the keys to reducing employees’ risks of suffering hearing loss. Even decreasing the noise a few decibels can help minimize the risk to workers. Talk to your employer about controlling exposure to excessive noise by implementing the following:
- Engineering controls. These include buying low-noise tools and machinery, keeping machinery and equipment well lubricated and maintained, utilizing sound walls and curtains to separate employees from noise, and enclosing the noise source.
- Administrative controls. Employers can take administrative steps to control noise, such as scheduling the use of loud machinery when the fewest employees are present, limiting the amount of time an employee is exposed to loud noise, scheduling a quiet rest break for a worker after being around loud noises, and keeping workers a safe distance away from the source of the noise.
- Hearing protection devices. Workers who must work with loud equipment should be provided with approved hearing protection, such as plugs and ear muffs, to minimize their exposure to loud noises.
- Hearing conservation program. Employers should implement a hearing conservation program when workers are exposed to high noise levels throughout the day. This can include assigning an employee to monitor noise levels, educating workers on the dangers of hearing loss and how to use protective hearing devices, providing workers with these devices, and regularly testing the hearing of workers at risk of hearing loss.
If you suffered hearing loss caused by your job, you could be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. We urge you to act quickly to not miss the deadline to file your claim. Call us at (888) 348-2616 to schedule a free consultation with a workers’ comp attorney today.