Hearing Conservation Program
This section has been reviewed and updated as needed: April 2012
- annual monitoring of noise exposures
- annual training on noise exposures
- use of hearing protectors
- annual audiometric testing
Audiometric tests are to be pure tone, air conduction, hearing threshold examinations, with test frequencies including as a minimum 500, 1000, 2000, 3000, 4000, and 6000 Hz. Tests at each frequency are to be taken separately for each ear.
Employees are to be notified, in writing, of the results of exams. If the annual audiogram shows a standard threshold shift, employees are to schedule a retest within 30 days to verify the shift. When there is a verified standard threshold shift, the employee must be notified within 21 days after verification.
The University strongly encourages the use of hearing protection devices while working around noisy equipment. The use of hearing protection devices is required for the following:
- When the exposure is 90 dBA, or greater.
- When the exposure is 85 dBA, or greater, and the employee has experienced a threshold shift.
- When the exposure is 85 dBA, or greater, and the employee has not yet had a baseline audiogram established.
For employees who have experienced a standard threshold shift, hearing protectors must attenuate employee exposure to an 8-hour time-weighted average of 85 decibels or below. The adequacy of hearing protector attenuation shall be re-evaluated whenever employee noise exposures increase to the extent that the hearing protectors provided may no longer provide adequate attenuation.