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Author: admin, 04.11.2014
Washington, DC — The US Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has withdrawn its proposed interpretation of existing workplace hearing loss prevention rules. The decision was made after Michaels heard the concerns of Sen Olympia Snowe and Sen Joseph Lieberman, who are both members of the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship, as well as co-chairs of the Senate Task Force on Manufacturing. The press statement noted that since 2004, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) has reported that nearly 125,000 workers have suffered significant, permanent hearing loss. In addition, OSHA will consult with experts from the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, and the National Academy of Engineering and begin an outreach and compliance assistance effort to provide enhanced technical information and guidance on the inexpensive, effective engineering controls for dangerous noise levels. The American Academy of Audiology estimates there are upwards of 5 million, perhaps as many as 30 million Americans occupationally exposed to noise levels greater than the OSHA Action Level of 85 dBA. Occupational exposure to elevated noise also entails largely unrecognized costs to organizations in terms of increased employee turnover, absenteeism, lowered performance and possible contribution to workplace accidents. It should be easy to recognize that the need for occupational hearing loss prevention extends well beyond the obvious practical desire to preserve hearing. Basically, there are two types of instruments to measure noise exposures: a sound level meter and a noise dosimeter.

A noise dosimeter is very similar to a sound level meter except that it stores sound level measurements and logs these measurements over time.  This approach provides an average noise exposure reading for a given period of time, such as an 8-hour workday. Area monitoring can be used to estimate noise exposure when the noise levels are relatively constant and employees are not mobile.
In workplaces where employees move about in different areas or where the noise intensity tends to fluctuate over time, noise exposure is generally more accurately estimated by the personal monitoring approach. Noise levels should be measured whenever there are significant changes in machinery or production processes that may result in increased noise levels; remonitoring should also be conducted to determine whether additional employees need to be included in the hearing conservation program. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention publishes a Practical Guide for Preventing Occupational Hearing Loss which illustrates specific steps than can be taken to reduce the risk to your employees. Social MediaClick on the social media icons below and stay connected with us across the web and throughout your day. Information graphics or infographics are graphical representations of information, data, or knowledge.
Pharmaceutical companies that need to comply with OSHA’s hearing conservation standard should have a compliance management software system in place to manage complex regulatory requirements contained in the hearing conservation standard.

In the pharmaceutical industry, a wide variety of pharmaceutical manufacturing activities can produce noise levels that require hearing protection. If you have any questions on hearing conservation programs, our webinars on potent compound safety, or compliance management software systems, please contact Affygility Solutions today!
He says that OSHA will continue to review comments about the proposed new rules and meet with both industry groups and worker representatives about further steps to prevent occupational hearing loss. Affygility Solutions provides environmental, health and safety software, potent compound safety, industrial hygiene, containment validation services to the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and medical device industry.
The graphics are manufactured with high grade inks that undergo a commercial heat and pressure process. I thought it would be useful sharing with other environmental, health and safety professionals.

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