September 7, 2023

NIOSH Publishes Guide for Preventing Occupational Hearing Loss

A new online guide for preventing occupational hearing loss is available from NIOSH. Intended for use by employers and safety professionals, the guide follows the structure of a NIOSH hearing loss prevention program and contains separate sections that explain how to measure noise exposure, summarize ways to eliminate or reduce noise, provide examples of engineering and administrative controls, outline considerations for choosing hearing protection, and describe practices for recordkeeping.

Recommendations for engineering controls to lower noise levels include reducing the speed of moving parts, eliminating restricted flow in pipes and ducts, isolating vibration in machinery, reducing vibrating parts and surfaces, using connectors that limit the transfer of vibrations to surfaces, keeping noisy machinery away from walls and surfaces that reflect sound, adding sound absorption materials, building enclosures around equipment, and installing barriers that block high frequency noise.

Access the guide and learn more about hearing loss prevention programs on the NIOSH website.

Related: Read how to mitigate conveyor noise and how to buy safer, quieter tools.