At 85 decibels, employers are required to provide hearing protection, and 80 decibels is the level at which they must assess the risk to workers‘ health and provide them with information and training. You can suffer permanent hearing damage if a sound reaches 85 decibels or higher.
In addition, companies must ensure they are not overprotecting employees; the sound attenuation of protectors should not be below 70dB. This is to guarantee employees can still communicate and hear warning signals.
The process of losing noise energy is called attenuation, and it is the attenuation data that should be examined when selecting appropriate hearing protection. Risk levels should be reflected in the protection selected.
When looking at the product information for hearing protection, it's also important to consider the Single Noise Rating to know exactly what protection is offered, so you can select hearing protection that is appropriate for your environment.
SNR stands for Single Number Rating which indicates the level of noise reduction provided by the selected ear protection. The higher the single number rating the higher the level of protection.
To determine acoustic pressure on your ears, you subtract the SNR value from the average noise level measured.
For example, if you are exposed to harmful sounds measured at a 115dB and you are wearing the Dromex DR-098 disposable earplugs with an SNR of 37 the auditory pressure on your ears is 78dB. You are therefore ensuring your own hearing is protected by keeping noise exposure below the safety limit.
The Dromex earmuffs and -plugs are designed for comfort and offer the highest level of protection against noise hazards. The foam used for ear protection absorbs sound waves by increasing air resistance, thereby reducing the amplitude of the waves.
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