Because erroneous assumptions endanger the effectiveness of occupational Hearing Conservation Programs (HCPs) and jeopardize worker hearing despite 25
Because erroneous assumptions endanger the effectiveness of occupational Hearing Conservation Programs (HCPs) and jeopardize worker hearing Û despite 25 years of government regulation Û a new, free, white paper titled Bad Assumptions about Hearing Protection addresses common and potentially dangerous misconceptions associated with hearing protection. The document is authored by Brad K. Witt, MA, CCC-A, past president of the National Hearing Conservation Association (NHCA) and director of Hearing Conservation at Howard Leight/Sperian Hearing Protection, LLC, a global provider of passive and intelligent hearing protection solutions.
Noting that bad assumptions about hearing protection, if left unchecked, have the ability to torpedo an otherwise healthy Hearing Conservation Program and leave the door open for hearing loss among workers exposed to hazardous noise, Witt discusses six common misconceptions: (1) Hearing protection is self-explanatory; (2) Any inserted earplug is blocking some noise; (3) An earplug halfway in the ear blocks about half the noise; (4) Cut the Noise Reduction Rating (NRR) in half to predict real-world protection; (5) Measuring real attenuation on a worker wearing earplugs is not possible; and, (6) No way exists to measure the noise dose of a worker under hearing protectors throughout the workday. Avoiding such assumptions about hearing protection helps a Hearing Conservation Program stay on track and prevent noise-induced hearing loss, Witt emphasizes. Bad Assumptions about Hearing Protection can be downloaded at www.hearforever.org/badassumptionsarticle.