It is widely accepted that construction sites are one of the most hazardous places to work. Working from heights, trip hazards and heavy machinery all present significant safety risks to employees.
One hazard that is often overlooked is loud noises. Noises from saws, trucks, bulldozers and other instruments all have the potential to cause severe damage to the ears. Often, an ear injury may not present symptoms immediately, meaning that they are not prioritized. Nevertheless, hearing plays a crucial aspect in the day-to-day life of a person, so it is worth protecting. Outlined below are some key ways to prevent hearing loss on constructions sites.
Establish safe distances
Sometimes, simply sitting a piece of equipment away from employees is enough to negate the risk of hearing damage. For example, noisy air compressors do not necessarily need to be in the immediate vicinity of the workspace. Where workers have no option but to be next to loud equipment, tasks can be rotated so that one person alone is not exposed for extended periods of time.
Know the limits
Recognizing where the risk comes from is arguably the most crucial step in preventing hearing loss on constructions sites. Hearing Loss Prevention for Construction and Demolition Workers express that a noise level under 85 decibels is acceptable over the working day. Whereas, anything above this has the potential to cause lasting damage. Many tools will satisfy these requirements. However, where decibel levels exceed 85, careful consideration should be given to finding more suitable ways of carrying out the task at hand.
Employers have a duty to protect workers on-site. If you have suffered hearing loss or any other work-related injury, it may benefit you to explore your legal options.