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Hearing Protection Standards

Standards for Hearing Protection Personal Protective Equipment ( ppe ) explained.

It is estimated around 30% of UK workers are exposed to hazardous levels of noise at some point during their working day and over 10% are exposed at all times. Noise induced hearing loss (NIHL) is one of the most common health issues facing companies today and whilst NIHL is permanent and irreversible, it is also 100% preventable. Noise induced hearing loss develops gradually and symptoms of long term damage are often undetectable for years. Before operating loud machinery, be sure to review your workplace requirements and ensure all employees are efficiently equipped.

When introducing hearing protection into your workplace it is advisable to avoid prescribing one protection style for all environments and users, it’s important when implementing ear muffs and plugs to choose the correct style for each environment and its demands, warmer environments can be better suited with plugs, whereas outdoor environments are more suited to the long term use of muffs. Without sufficient (or any) protection, ears are vulnerable to loss of hearing, long term damage and tinnitus.
Loss or long term damage of hearing is caused by excessive damage to the structures within the cochlea and can be the result of long term exposure to surprisingly moderate decibels and frequency of sound. Little can be done to salvage this once the damage has been done and hearing aids are often required in later life.
Tinnitus is caused by exposure to a sudden, extremely loud, explosive sound or by the prolonged exposure to hazardous noise levels. Tinnitus can result in permanent hearing damage, constant distracting sound in the ears (buzzing, humming and ringing) and disturbed sleep. There is currently no treatment for tinnitus and it is thought to be incurable.
To find out more about how to choose the right ear safety equipment for you, contact a specialist at Tower today, for free, expert advice. Alternatively see our easy to use guide below on deciding what protection suits the hazards you face in a normal working environment.
With the most comprehensive knowledge on hearing protection in the market, buying with Tower is always a sound investment.


EN352-1 Earmuffs - Headband

The present section of the standard deals with headband earmuffs and establishes requirementsin terms of manufacture, design and performance, test methods, instructions relating to marking and information intended for users. It stipulates putting at disposal the information relating to earmuffs acoustic fading characteristics, measured in conformitywith EN 24869-1 and therefore specify a minimal fading level necessary to establish their conformity with the present specification. This section of the standard does not deal with earmuffs designed to be fixed on a helmet or to be a part of a helmet or with the performance of electronic devices likely to be inserted in the earmuffs, or even with amplitude sensitive earmuffs. This standard does not deal with ear protection performance as far as impulse noise is concerned.

EN352-2 Ear Plugs

This part of the EN 352 standard specifies constructional, design and performance requirements, marking requirements and user information for ear-plugs. It calls for the sound attenuation of the ear-plugs, measured in accordance with EN 24869-1, to be declared and to be not less than a specified minimum.

EN352-3 Helmet-Mounted Earmuffs

This part of the EN 352 standard specifies requirements for construction, design, performance, marking and user information for earmuffs fitted to an industrial helmet which complies with EN 397, Industrial safety helmets. In particular, it calls for the sound attenuation of the earmuffs, measured in accordance with EN 24869-1, to be declared and to be not less than a specified minimum.


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