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Who can perform a noise assessment?

In all sectors, the legislation requires every employer who plans to do work that exposes workers to noise levels that are excessive, to conduct an assessment of the risk and outline the ways in which this could impact the health and safety of employees. The assessment must also include the measures needed to be taken to ensure that noise levels are in line with the regulations.

Employers must offer hearing protection as well as hearing protection zones when there is a noise of 85 decibels or higher.

The threshold where risk assessments need to be conducted is 80 decibels. Workers are not exposed to sound levels higher than 87 decibels. This takes into account the reduction offered through hearing protection. Workers should also undergo regular hearing tests when they are exposed to sounds higher that 85 decibels. If you’ve identified noise-producing activities that could cause your workers or anyone else in your workplace to dangerous noise or sound, and you cannot reduce the exposure to below the threshold immediately You should evaluate the potential risks by performing an assessment of noise.

A noise assessment can help you:

Determine which employees are most at the risk of losing their hearing
Find out what sources of noise and processes are creating that danger
Find out if and what kind of noise control measures can be put in place
Verify the effectiveness of the current controls.

An assessment of noise does not require a test. It is for instance, if one task at work that is the use of one machine – generates noise that is greater than 85 dB(A) and the maker has given information on the noise levels of the machine when it is used in certain manners, then a valid assessment could be conducted without measuring. In more complex scenarios, it is possible to require measurements to determine accurately the level of exposure a worker has to noise, for instance areas with varying levels of noise throughout the day and work where employees move in or out of loud zones.

Who will be able to make the test?

An assessment of noise must be conducted by a qualified person. The more complicated the issue is, the more educated and skilled the individual needs to be. A skilled person is one with accurate noise measuring equipment and, with the help of training and knowledge and experience:

Knows what is required by The Control of Noise at Work Regulations 2005
Knows how to verify the effectiveness of instruments
Knows how to take measures correctly
Are you able to interpret the results of noise measurements?

What should be reported in an assessment of noise?

Reports on noise assessments should prove whether the evaluation was carried out properly and that all aspects were considered. The reports on noise assessment should be used to choose appropriate measures for control to ensure that the hearing of employees maintained at an acceptable level and the major findings should be made part of the education for all employees. These reports should be available to managers health, safety, and health representatives, and regulatory authorities.

We have trained risk assessors available to visit your location to conduct an assessment of risk and assist to keep your employees’ hearing secure.