Issues regarding hearing protection device use in manufacturing and mining.
J Acoust Soc Am 2002 Nov; 112(5)(Part 2):2295
In this study reasons offered by workers for not consistently using hearing protectors are examined. Study groups were comprised of: (1) 124 workers exposed to various levels of noise in a manufacturing company, located in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Data on work history, psychosocial aspects of the workers job, medical history, present health, stress, occupational and nonoccupational exposures to noise or chemicals, and lifestyle factors were collected through interviews. The participants had their hearing and noise exposure assessed. Sixty-four percent of the workers indicated that they wore hearing protectors, but only 20 percent of that subgroup stated that they wore the devices all the time when noise-exposed. (2) Forty-four workers and supervisors from the manufacturing and mining sectors in Cincinnati and Pittsburgh. Participants were interviewed or took part in focus groups discussions on a variety of hearing conservation topics, including problems with the use of HPDs. The variables significantly associated with a workers' decision not to wear hearing protectors consistently included interference with communication, interference with job performance, comfort issues, self-perception of hearing condition, and inability to detect warning signals when wearing HPDs. These are issues to be addressed in order to promote a more effective use of HPDs.
Noise; Noise-control; Noise-levels; Noise-induced-hearing-loss; Injury-prevention; Safety-research; Hearing; Hearing-conservation; Hearing-protection; Auditory-system; Ear-protection; Ear-protectors; Personal-protective-equipment; Work-environment; Work-practices; Miners; Mining-industry; Industrial-factory-workers; Industrial-exposures; Industrial-noise; Worker-health; Worker-motivation; Workers; Attitude; Behavior; Group-behavior; Group-dynamics; Ototoxicity; Health-surveys; Psychological-factors; Sociological-factors
Thais C. Morata, Division of Applied Research and Technology, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, 4676 Columbia Parkway, Cincinnati, OH 45226
Journal of the Acoustical Society of America