Noise induced hearing loss is preventable

Apr 19, 2018

noiseHear practical and potentially life-changing tips on preventing noise-related hearing loss in two new webinars, April 25 and May 28, 2018. Led by professionals, these free one-hour webinars will help you understand the big-picture issues associated with noise and outline action steps for controlling noise in your workplace.

Why excessive noise is an issue

In the workplace, excessive noise may reduce productivity, interfere with communication, and contribute to incidents and injuries by distracting people and making moving equipment, other workers and warning signals hard to hear.

Hearing loss from excessive noise is permanent, and can have debilitating effects on the quality of life for workers and their families.

Between 2009 and 2014, the annual costs just for workplace hearing loss claims in Ontario exceeded $50 million per year1.

What you'll hear in the webinars

The first webinar, taking place on April 25, International Noise Awareness Day, features John Oudyk, an occupational hygienist with the Occupational Health Clinics for Ontario Workers. John will lead participants through a 5-step approach to controlling noise exposure:

  1. Deciding if the noise is too loud
  2. Identifying and describing noise sources
  3. Can we make it quieter considering controls?
  4. Does everyone know this noise can affect their health?
  5. Do the controls work?

This webinar will be hosted by the Public Services Health & Safety Association, a WSPS prevention system partner.

The May 28 webinar, hosted by WSPS, Occupational Hygiene Specialist Warren Clements will build on the first webinar with tips and strategies for assessing noise exposure based on his expertise in noise exposure, hearing protection, audiometry, and noise control. Warren will also offer guidance on selecting hearing protection.

6 best practices to get you started

The Center for Hearing and Communication, organizer of International Noise Awareness Day, suggests these noise control best practices:

  1. buy quieter tools and equipment
  2. maintain and lubricate machinery and equipment
  3. enclose the source or enclose the worker in a room to prevent overexposure to noise
  4. look for ways to move loud tools and equipment away from workers to minimize exposure to noise
  5. if you need to increase the volume of your car radio at the end of the work day, your work environment may be too loud
  6. use a sound level meter to measure noise levels in your workplace and determine if further action is required

How WSPS can help

Attend these two sessions at Partners in Prevention 2018 Health & Safety Conference & Trade show, then check out related exhibits:

  • Apps for Noise: Just a Screening Tool or Is It More Than That?
  • Essentials for a Successful Hearing Conservation Program

Inform yourself with WSPS online noise resources, including a hearing conservation guideline, e-courses in English and French, and recently published articles.

Talk to a WSPS Technical Specialist. Warren Clements and his occupational hygiene colleagues have the expertise to conduct noise exposure assessments and help you find ways to reduce worker exposure to noise. Solutions don't have to be complicated or costly: 1-877-494-WSPS (9777).

1As reported by Ontario's Ministry of Labour, "Enforcement Initiatives," Industrial Sector Plan 2017-2018