What can employers and employees do to prevent noise induced hearing loss?
Hearing loss affects over 9 million people here in the UK and is a cause of distress for many sufferers, especially if it has been caused by someone else’s negligence or an employer’s failure to implement the appropriate safety measures.
Employers need to take responsibility for their workers’ health. Whether that’s reducing noise in the workplace, or providing staff with the appropriate protective equipment, they have a duty of care to ensure people do not sustain hearing loss or industrial deafness in the workplace.
Hearing loss affects over 9 million people here in the UK and is a cause of distress for many sufferers, especially if it has been caused by someone else’s negligence or an employer’s failure to implement the appropriate safety measures. If you have suffered hearing loss and you believe someone else is to blame, contact a member of our specialist team today.
The two most common causes of hearing loss are age related and noise induced. Age related hearing loss happens as our hearing degenerates the older we get and the quality and quantity of tiny hair cells that transmit sound to our inner ear are reduced over time. However, noise related hearing loss is usually sustained due to prolonged exposure to loud or persistent noise. Those who work in heavy industries, factory workers and those in the entertainment industry are more at risk of developing this condition.
So what can employers and employees do to prevent noise induced hearing loss?
Thanks to the Control of Noise at Work Regulations 2005 (Noise Regulations 2005), all UK employers are required, within reason, to prevent or reduce the risks of exposure to noise within the workplace.
If an employer fails to take certain steps and an employee is injured as a result, they may be liable.
A noise assessment must be carried out by a health and safety professional as any sounds in excess of 85 dB (A) A weighted decibels could potentially cause harm. This may mean an employer for example will have to improve the working environment for employees by utilising a quieter process or updating any heavy machinery to comply with noise regulations.
Hearing protection must be provided in workplaces where noise levels could cause harm. Although earplugs and earmuffs may prove extremely useful in helping to block out sounds, some earplugs have a limit on the amount they reduce sound. High quality earplugs will usually carry a noise reduction limit of around 20 dB, but in cases where noise levels reach higher than 105, these may be ineffective. This means that earplugs or earmuffs are not a 100% effective solution when it comes to protecting employees.
Safety policies and procedures must be implemented and enforced. Employees may not understand when they are supposed to wear hearing protection and may be at risk if the appropriate areas are not signposted or highlighted.
Furthermore, maintaining hearing protection ensures their effectiveness and the appropriate training on how and when to use them to help reduce noise related hearing loss in the workplace.
Natasha Ulph, Associate Solicitor and member of the Serious Injury Unit at Freeclaim commented, “Employers need to take responsibility for their workers’ health. Whether that’s reducing noise in the workplace, or providing staff with the appropriate protective equipment, they have a duty of care to ensure people do not sustain hearing loss or industrial deafness in the workplace.”
If you are concerned about noise related hearing loss and feel that your employer has not taken the appropriate steps to reduce the risks causing you injury in the long run, you may be able to claim compensation. If you have not been provided with the necessary safety equipment and you are injured as a result, contact our specialist solicitors at Freeclaim today. We have a dedicated team of personal injury lawyers who specialise in accident at work compensation claims ready to help you get the compensation you deserve.
Call our 24 hour helpline on 0800 612 7340 - all enquires are free and completely confidential. Plus, all claims are taken on a no win no fee basis, so there is no financial risk to you. Or go to www.freeclaim.co.uk for more information.
( Press Release Image: http://photos.webwire.com/prmedia/34286/193983/193983-1.jpg )
- Contact Information
- D Cobourne
- SEO Executive
- Hitsearch Limited
- Contact via E-mail
This news content may be integrated into any legitimate news gathering and publishing effort. Linking is permitted.
News Release Distribution and Press Release Distribution Services Provided by WebWire.