Hearing in The Work Place



Hearing loss produced by work is preventable, but once your hearing has gone it will not come back. According to Roy Morgan  2014*, total number New Zealanders aged more than 14 experiencing any hearing loss between 2007 and 2013 was 7.5%, which is huge enough to make us take excessive noise as a serious issue to be resolved.

So, value your hearing! You only have one chance!

*NZMJ 7 August 2015, Vol. 128 No 1419 – ISSN 1175 – 8716
Noise level

It is very important to maintain average noise level less than 85dB and 140dB at peak (WorkSafe NZ).

Indicative noise levels of selected tools

Activity Indicative Noise Level (Decibels)
Normal Conversation 60
Driving A Vehicle 70
Air Compressors 85
Operating A Crane 102
Hammering Nails Into Timber 131

Sources of noises

  • Noise in Manufacturing – mechanical noise
  • Noise in Agriculture – tractors
  • Noise in construction – compressors
  • Noise in the workplace – head phones
  • Noise in the home – lawn mowers

Yes! Even some home appliances are too much noisy such as mowers, chainsaws.

Excessive noise can quickly deteriorate your level of hearing. It consequently affects your quality of life.

In what ways does loss of hearing cause difficulty?

  • Difficulty in communication and hence share information, at works, with friends, family and all sort of social activities
  • Difficulty in learning new things
  • Difficulty in hearing warning signals
  • Difficulty of enjoying your life as normal, listening to music and the sound of nature

Do you suffer from hearing loss?

Have you ever noticed a ringing in your ears or some deafness after exposing to a loud noise?

Do you often ask people to repeat what they have just said?

Do family or friends tell you the TV is too loud?

Preventive Action

Based on Health and Safety Act 2015, NOISE is among the RISKS that PCBUs are required to practicably control and reduce.

In order to make sure you are not at risk of noise damage:

  • Do not enter into noisy place of work without appropriate noise protection.

What is appropriate Personal Protective Equipment for noise?

Visit Classified Hearing Protectors at WorkSafe website or complete the form below for advice on how to get assessed.


Article: Roya Gorjifard MEng Safety, Health & Environment, BSc Applied Physics

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