Hearing Protection for Constructors Requires More than Sound BlockingAuthor/Presenter: Sokol, Bill
If recent OSHA Stakeholder meetings are any indication, developing effective and enforceable hearing-protection standards for the construction industry will not be an easy task. The construction industry is different from others in many respects. Employee turnover is high, employment terms are generally shorter, the industry contains a large number of small contractor and subcontractor businesses, and noise levels on a typical construction site are often unpredictable and constantly changing. As OSHA officials heard during March meetings in Chicago, all of these things impact the issue of hearing protection in one way or another. The clearest message from the OSHA Stakeholder meetings was that the problem of developing effective regulations for the construction industry is a knotty one and it will likely to be some time before they are enacted. In the meantime, safety professionals can do no harm by developing human-factors-based hearing programs now.