Hearing Loss Prevention (Noise)

Chapter 296-817, WAC

Effective Date: 08/01/03

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Scope

WAC 296-817-100 

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The purpose of this chapter is to:

  • Prevent employee hearing loss by minimizing employee noise exposures
    AND
  • Make sure employees exposed to noise are protected.

These goals are accomplished by:

  • Measuring and computing the employee noise exposure from all equipment and machinery in the workplace, as well as any other noise sources in the work area
  • Protecting employees from noise exposure by using feasible noise controls
  • Making sure employees use hearing protection, if you can't feasibly control the noise
  • Training employees about hearing loss prevention
  • Evaluating your hearing loss prevention efforts by tracking employee hearing or periodically reviewing controls and protection
  • Making appropriate corrections to your program.

Reference:

Table 1 will help you determine the hearing loss prevention requirements for your workplace. For the specific requirements associated with Noise Evaluation Criteria, see WAC 296-817-30010 of this chapter.

Table 1
Noise Evaluation Criteria

Criteria

Description

Requirements

85 dBA TWA8 Full-day employee noise exposure dose. If you have one or more employees whose exposure equals or exceeds this level, you must have a hearing loss prevention program – Hearing protection
– Training
– Audiometric testing
90 dBA TWA8 Full-day employee noise exposure dose. If you have one or more employees whose exposure equals or exceeds this level, you must reduce employee noise exposures in the workplace – Noise controls
and
– Hearing protection
– Training
– Audiometric testing
115 dBA measured using slow response Extreme noise level (greater than one second in duration) – Hearing protection
– Signs posted in work areas warning of exposure
140 dBC measured using fast response Extreme impulse or impact noise (less than one second in duration) Hearing protection

 

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