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NIOSH Program Portfolio

 

Construction

NORA Construction Sector Strategic Goals

9278344 - Hearing Protector Testing Methods & Rating Schemes

Start Date: 10/1/1996
End Date: 9/30/2010

Principal Investigator (PI)
Name: William Murphy
Phone: 513-533-8125
Organization: NIOSH
Sub-Unit: DART
Funded By: NIOSH

Primary Goal Addressed
None

Secondary Goal Addressed
None

Attributed to Construction
50%

Project Description

Short Summary

More than 30 million workers are exposed to potentially hazardous noise and, at present, the primary redress available to them is use of hearing protective devices (HPDs). This project’s goal is to develop and verify testing methods necessary to assess non-linear passive HPDs, electronically augmented HPDs, as well as traditional passive HPDs such that they may be followed by other laboratories. Part of that assessment will involve the analysis of data collected in an earlier large interlaboratory study of test methods. To assist other laboratories testing passive HPDS, a “Noise Reduction Rating Calculator” will be developed. All of the work of this project will underpin the provision of technical support to the EPA as it revises its HPD labeling regulation. No earmarked Agriculture or Construction funds have supported this project.



Description

This project will provide a directly funded project for the EPA interagency agreement. The Environmental Protection Agency is tasked with enforcing the labeling of hearing protection devices (HPDs) used in industry. The EPA relies on NIOSH research as a basis for promulgating HPD labeling regulations. New research projects and development efforts will be undertaken for the EPA and will be associated with this project. This project’s goal is to develop and verify testing methods necessary to assess non-linear passive HPDs, electronically augmented HPDs, as well as traditional passive HPDs such that they may be tested by other laboratories. Part of that assessment will involve the analysis of data collected in an earlier large interlaboratory study of test methods. To assist other laboratories testing passive HPDS, a “Noise Reduction Rating Calculator” will be developed. All of the work of this project will underpin the provision of technical support to the EPA as it revises its HPD labeling regulation. The PS&B for the EPA efforts are also funded through this project. The EPA has submitted the revised rule for public comment in FY2008. The EPA project officer is expecting to have the NIOSH project officer work assist with the response to comment for approximately 3-5 months during the beginning of FY2009.



Objectives

This project is the direct funded component of the EPA interagency agreement. The primary objective of the project is to provide technical assistance to the EPA while they proceed with a revision of the regulation on labeling hearing protection devices. NIOSH scientists have drafted the preamble to the proposed rule and are working on the development of the rule’s language. The project should be judged by the following activities in FY09:

•The EPA’s revised rule for hearing protector labeling and testing will have gone through public comment and NIOSH will assist EPA with the response to public comment.

•The data from the interlaboratory study will be published in two peer reviewed papers.

•A Noise Reduction Rating database developed by NIOSH will be tested with users to determine its utility to find protectors appropriate to particular noise exposures.

In FY09, NIOSH will continue to provide technical assistance to the EPA during the public comment period





Page last updated:April 24, 2013
Page last reviewed:May 23, 2011
Content Source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Office of the Director

 

NIOSH Program:

Construction

construction worker, crane, architect