Prevent Noise Pollution with Industrial Sound Barriers
Used in many occupations and situations, industrial sound barriers combat noise pollution by absorbing and reflecting sound. A noisy workplace can be hazardous to the health and safety of employees. It can also affect the public, especially when construction is taking place nearby.
Many people don't realize what a serious problem noise pollution poses. It can lead to a host of issues, including hearing loss, tinnitus, physical and mental stress, accidents, and injuries. Exposure to noise can also interfere with productivity, concentration, and communication, adversely affecting workers on the job and in their personal lives.
According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), 22 million people per year experience loud noise in the workplace. Their 2018 study on occupational noise exposure within US industries and occupations found that "hypertension, elevated cholesterol, and hearing difficulty are more prevalent among noise‐exposed workers." NIOSH considers noise at or above 85 decibels to be hazardous. and recommends sound barriers as a solution for reducing noise exposure on the job. Businesses spend an average of $242 million on worker’s compensation claims related to hearing loss, so it's important to provide sound barriers for the sake of your business as well as your employees.
If your employees can potentially be exposed to noises that are at least 85 decibels over eight working hours, OSHA requires you to put a hearing conservation program into effect to help prevent hearing loss through reduced noise exposure. OSHA’s Noise Standard requires employers to do so through administrative controls, engineering controls, or Hearing Protection Devices.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), if an individual must raise his or her voice in order to speak with someone who is just three feet away, noise exposure is at a limit that is considered harmful. More than ten million construction workers are exposed to excessive noise every day, with 14 percent suffering from job-related hearing difficulty. Much of the equipment used in construction exceeds 85 decibels. This problem is also found in demolition work, mining, manufacturing, agriculture, and many other industries.