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Noise in the Workplace Assessments

Aug 24, 2021

Did you know that noise induced hearing loss (NIHL) is one of the most common causes of disability in the UK?

According to the Government Health and Safety Executive, it is estimated that 170,000 people in the UK suffer deafness, permanent ringing in the ears (Tinnitus) or other ear conditions caused by excessive noise in the workplace. The Control of Noise Regulations at Work 2005 act came into force to ensure that workers’ hearing is protected from excessive noise and therefore combat the problem and reduce the amount of people affected by Noise Induced Hearing Loss.

Many businesses have yet to comply with the regulations and are at serious risk from prosecution.

Are you ready to make a positive difference in the workplace and keep your staff safe from Noise Induced Hearing Loss?

What do the regulations require you to do?*
The Control of Noise at Work Regulations 2005 (Noise Regulations 2005) require employers to prevent or reduce risks to health and safety from exposure to noise at work. Employees have duties under the Regulations too.

As an employer the regulations require you to:
• Assess the risks to your employees from noise at work.
• Take action to reduce the noise exposure that produces those risks.
• Provide your employees with hearing protection if you cannot reduce the noise exposure enough by using other methods.
• Make sure the legal limits on noise exposure are not exceeded.
• Provide your employees with information, instruction, and training;
• Carry out health surveillance where there is a risk to health.

The Regulations do not apply to:
• members of the public exposed to noise from their non-work activities, or making an informed choice to go to noisy places.
• low-level noise that is a nuisance but causes no risk of hearing damage.

What are the action values and limit values?*
The Noise Regulations require you to take specific action at certain action values. These relate to:
• the levels of exposure to noise of your employees averaged over a working day or week; and
• the maximum noise (peak sound pressure) to which employees are exposed in a working day.
The values are:
• lower exposure action values:
o daily or weekly exposure of 80 dB(A)
o peak sound pressure of 135 dB(C)
• upper exposure action values:
o daily or weekly exposure of 85 dB(A)
o peak sound pressure of 137 dB(C).

There are also levels of noise exposure which must not be exceeded. These are called exposure limit values:
• daily or weekly exposure of 87 dB(A).
• peak sound pressure of 140 dB(C).

How often should you have a noise assessment?
There is no set frequency to have a noise assessment. However, it is recommended that regular assessments are carried out every two years to determine if there is any deterioration in machinery that may be causing any increases in noise level.
If there are any significant changes to your workplace or operations during that time, more regular assessments are recommended.

Bespoke Assessments
To ensure you have the appropriate measures in place at your premises, we will provide a bespoke assessment. Typically, a noise assessment will take between one and two days to carry out, including site visit and complete reports, depending on the size of your organisation and scope of noise.

Our assessment complies with HSE guidance for employers – “Noise Assessments, Getting What You Need”, which will be carried out by one of our qualified competent noise specialists.

Our costs vary depending on complexity and size of premises.

Please get in touch for your quote today!

(*Information from Health and Safety Government Website)