OSHA Safety Manuals | noise
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Hearing Protection Noise is an unwanted sound that can affect job performance, safety, and your health. Psychological effects of noise include annoyance and disruption of concentration. Physical effects include loss of hearing, pain, nausea, and interference with communications when the exposure is severe. Hearing protection is essential when noise exposures can't be controlled at their source. Both earplugs and earmuffs provide a physical barrier that reduces inner ear noise levels inner ear and prevents hearing loss from occurring. However, people often resist wearing these or use them incorrectly. Employees resist wearing hearing protection more than any other type of personal protective equipment. One...

Occupational Vibration Exposure Many workers do not think that their exposure to vibration could be a health hazard.  Vibration exposure is more than just a nuisance.  Constant exposure to vibration has been known to cause serious health problems such as back pain, carpal tunnel syndrome, and vascular disorders.  Vibration related injury is especially prevalent in occupations that require outdoor work, such as forestry, farming, transportation, shipping, and construction.  There are two classifications for vibration exposure:  whole-body vibration and hand and arm vibration.  These two types of vibration have different sources, affect different areas of the body, and produce different symptoms. Whole-body vibration...

Hearing Protection Devices Hearing protection devices (HPD) such as earmuffs and earplugs can be an effective measure to protect hearing in noisy work environments.  However, hearing protection devices are only effective if they are properly sized and carefully fitted into or over the ear.  The two common HPD categories are earplugs and earmuffs. There are several common types of hearing protection devices: Formable earplugs made of expandable foam.  One size fits most people. Premolded earplugs made from flexible plastics.  Often sold in different sizes, they should be selected to provide best fit for each ear. Semi-aural devices, or canal caps, consisting of...