Mining Publication: Administrative Controls for Reducing Worker Noise Exposures
Noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) continues to be a concern for the mining industry. A new noise standard (30 CFR 62) is aimed at reducing NIHL in mining through engineering and administrative noise controls. However, the difficulty and expense of implementing engineering controls can make administrative controls an attractive alternative for reducing worker noise exposure. Over the last 3 years, NIOSH has conducted worker noise exposure surveys in underground and surface coal mines and coal prep plants. The surveys have revealed many possible administrative controls and an approach to implementation and analysis. The surveys have shown that worker dosimetry, time-motion studies, and equipment noise profiling are important aspects of effectively using administrative controls. A description of the approach for selecting, implementing, and evaluating administrative controls and a list of administrative controls are reported.