Noise Control and Hearing Conservation Program:

Exposure to noise over a period of time can damage cochlea in inner ear and cause noise induced hearing loss (NIHL). Hearing Conservation Program is designed to prevent hearing loss to employees even when they are exposed to high noise levels at work. Kuwait EPA, KPC HSE document 41, and Kuwait Labor Law 38 of 1964 as amended till to date, requires all employers including contractors to have a Hearing Conservation Program for their employees with the following elements. Compliance to elements of the program is mandatory.

  1. Noise monitoring:

    1.1   Area noise monitoring: Contractors should measure noise levels in areas under their control, using sound level meter and place hazard warning signs at the entrance to areas with noise level 80 dBA or more, requiring employees to wear hearing protectors when entering or working in such areas, or doing a task where a noise level of 80 dBA or more is generated.

    1.2   Personal exposure monitoring: Measure exposure of representative employees, working in areas with noise level 80 dBA or more, to noise using noise dosimeter, and identify employee groups who are exposed to noise at or above 85 dBA Time Weighted Average (TWA) for 8 hour shift.

  2. Noise control: Whenever feasible, noise level should be reduced and maintained below 85 dBA. Where levels exceed 85 dBA, exposure must be controlled using elements of Hearing Conservation program.
  3. Audiometric Testing: Employees ability to hear sound at various frequencies is assessed by a qualified health professional using an audiometer in a quiet booth, and result is recorded in the form of a graph called audiogram. Elements of audiometric testing include Baseline audiometric testing, annual audiometric testing and follow up.

    3.1   Baseline audiogram is the first audiogram. It serves as a reference audiogram for an employee against which his/ her future audiograms are compared. It is provided as part of pre-employment medical examination or within 6 months of exposure at or above 8-hour TWA of 85 dBA.

    3.2   Annual Audiogram should be conducted every year for employees exposed to noise at or above 8-hour TWA of 85 dBA. It is done to detect early effect of noise on hearing called Standard Threshold Shift (STS).

    3.3   Follow up: Employees showing STS must be informed in writing with a copy to their supervisor. Affected employee’s supervisor must review hearing protection with the employee, train the employee in use and care of hearing protectors, and ensure that affected employee’s exposure to noise with hearing protectors does not exceed 8-hour TWA of 85 dB.

  4. Hearing Protectors: Contractors must provide hearing protectors (ear plugs and/ muffs) and ensure that employees wear them when they enter an area with noise level 80 dB or more, or do a task in which a noise level of 80 dB or more is generated.
  5. Training: Awareness training shall be provided to all employees. Advance level training should be provided every year to employees exposed to noise at or above 8-hour TWA of 85 dBA. It should include noise and its effect, purpose and procedure of audiometric testing, and selection, fit and use of hearing protectors.
  6. Record keeping: Records must be maintained as follows: Area noise for 2 years, and Personal exposure and audiometric test results for the duration of employee’s employment plus 30 years.
Home | Environment | MSW | CHESM | EHS Initiatives | Safety Posters | Lesson Learned | OH | Purchasing | Privacy Statment | Term Of Use
© 2001 - 2013 Joint Operations. All Rights Reserved.
Total Numbers Of Visits: 12994