According to a 2021 study in the American Journal of Industrial Medicine, a startling 53% of workers don’t use hearing protection in high-noise environments. That means more than half of workers are exposed to loud noises and the health risks associated with hazardous sounds.
What are Hazardous Noises?
Noise is an unavoidable part of our daily lives. Whether you’re working a desk job and listening to music in headphones all day or part of a construction crew dealing with heavy equipment, loud sounds surround us.
Extremely high levels of noise can cause hearing loss, whether you’ve been exposed to a single incident at the highest end of the noise-level scale or exposed to high levels over a long period of time.
Noise levels are quantifiable, and understanding the average decibels produced by certain elements can help us identify risk factors for on-the-job hearing loss. For example, leaves rustling outdoors produce about 30 decibels of noise on average. A gun shot 100 feet away produces an average of 140 decibels of noise. Between these two extremes are everyday sounds like normal conversation (60 decibels), heavy traffic or power lawn mowers (85 decibels) and chainsaws (106 decibels). Anything over 85 decibels can be harmful to your hearing.
Protecting Your Hearing Without Sacrificing Communication
Completely blocking harmful noises is great — if you’re working alone in a safe, predictable environment. Most of us aren’t working in those circumstances and need to be able to protect our hearing while also communicating with others and keeping an awareness of our surroundings.
Phones or radios are an option, but they don’t block out work noise. Your ears are still exposed to potentially harmful noise levels, and using either of these options requires a free hand.
Yelling is a classic option, but you won’t be able to compete with the loudest sounds. It’s also draining to have to yell all day long.
Hand signals are another idea, but what if your coworkers aren’t looking at you at the right time? What if you need both hands to safely and effectively do your job?
Our wireless communications solutions from Sonetics are ideal for protecting your hearing while maintaining situational awareness and the ability to communicate with your crew. They aren’t handsets — they’re headsets that don’t require taking your hands off work to use. Listen-through technology allows for outside sounds and situational awareness but still protects your hearing from dangerous decibel levels. Full-duplex audio tech keeps your conversation natural, and the rugged design of Sonetics headsets means they hold up for life.
Learn more about how our Sonetics wireless headsets can keep your hearing safe while letting you get the job done. Schedule your free demo with Haaker in Los Angeles, San Diego, Las Vegas or Phoenix today!