Noise protection at work

Noise at work is a very complex and high importance problem. Its seriousness is due to the fact that it can affect workers in irreversible ways i.e. Tinnitus (a constant ringing, rumbling or whistling in the ears) and Noise Induced Hearing Loss. This is not just a health issue, but also a social one, because workers’ interactions with their friends and families can also be affected by their conditions. Employees aren’t always aware of the implications that may occur if they don’t protect their hearing.

They have a duty to adhere to precautions that exist in their workplaces; however responsibility to educate staff and enforce safety lies with the employers. They have to provide their employees both information and training, especially with regard to the use of hearing protection.

This is not optional, but mandatory by law – Regulation 10 of the Control of Noise at Work Regulations 2005 says that people exposed to noise which is likely to be at or above a lower action value have to be given adequate information, instruction and training.

The staff who should be trained are the following:

• all who are likely to have daily personal exposure values at or above the HSE’s lower action value for noise;

• every person who enters an ear protection zone;

• those who have the responsibility for making sure that ear protection is worn correctly. The training should be given by a competent person who has good presentations skills or enough experience of delivering training.

Find out more about Focus Health and Safety by viewing their company profile, here.

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