Follow these steps to ensure you have an effective hearing conservation program.

Article by: Laurie Wells and Ted Madison with 3M Personal Safety Division
Article origination: Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Magazine

At least 22 million employees will experience noise at work at potentially damaging levels this year. And the cost for failing to protect workers from noisy environments is not cheap, reports OSHA,1 with businesses paying out more than $1.5 million in 2016 alone.

While OSHA requires employers to provide a “continuing, effective hearing conservation program” for employees who are exposed to hazardous noise, most employers understand and respect the importance of protecting their workers’ hearing.

One easy way to protect workers from work-related hearing loss is to implement seven elements of an effective Hearing Conservation Program. We’ll also review ways safety managers can improve how they protect workers by engaging with them and providing more resources to help both on and off the clock. When an employer is committed to hearing loss prevention, employees may be more likely to take interest in protecting their hearing at work and elsewhere.

Seven Elements of Hearing Conservation

3M recommends seven elements for Hearing Conservation Programs (HCPs) that are based on both OSHA requirements and best practices recommendations from NIOSH. They are Measure, Control, Protect, Check, Train, Record, and Evaluate.

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