Hearing Loss and Occupational Noise Library

The Noise Pollution Clearinghouse Hearing Loss and Occupational Noise Library provides information about hearing loss and its prevention. Noise induced hearing loss affects 10 million Americans, and tragically, it is entirely foreseeable and preventable. Individuals, parents, teachers, employers, and employees will find resources and recommendations to reduce the risk of hearing loss.

The Hearing Loss and Occupational Noise Library is sponsored by E-A-R, Quest Technologies and Metrosonics, CSTI Acoustics, Super Soundproofing Co. and Larson Davis.

Noise Forum-------Soundproofing Links

Air Bag Noise. Air bags deploy with such force that many drivers are put at risk of sustaining hearing loss. This page includes four letters, written to urge the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to change their air bag requirements for American cars.

A Basis for Limiting Noise Exposure for Hearing Conservation. From the EPA, this is a PDF file.

Comments on Occupational Noise to the OSHA Standards Planning Committee (1994). This excellent paper is a previously unpublished document from a recognized expert which outlines specific recommendations to OSHA regarding reducing noise in the workplace. Several worthwhile books and articles are referenced.

Comparing Standards for Safe Noise-Exposure: Many people think of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) when they think of protecting workers' health. These data show that other organizations, namely the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and ANSI/NIOSH, have safer standards which include a larger margin of safety.

Comprehensive Hearing Protection Bibliography. This bibliography is a comprehensive set of approximately 2500 references on hearing protection, hearing conservation, and aural care, hygiene and physiology, for 1831-1999.

Criteria for a Recommended Standard Occupational Noise Exposure - Revised Criteria (1998). The original NIOSH publication (1972) provided the basis for a recommended standard to reduce the risk of developing permanent hearing loss as a result of occupational noise exposure [NIOSH 1972]. NIOSH has now evaluated the latest scientific information and has revised some of its previous recommendations.

A Guide to Developing and Maintaining an Effective Hearing Conservation Program (Royster and Royster, 1998). This Guide is a must read for anyone who works in noisy environments or supervises people who work in noisy environments.

Information on Levels of Environmental Noise Requisite to Protect Public Health and Welfare with an Adequate Margin of Safety (EPA, 1974). This document is probably the most comprehensive study of noise in America. This document is very large. A shorter form of this document is "Protective Noise Levels."

In Search of Meaningful Measures of Hearing Protector Effectiveness (Berger and Royster, 1996). The appropriateness of EPA's Hearing Protector Labeling Regulations has been seriously debated for several years. This paper discusses the search for measures of the effectiveness of hearing protectors in the field. The combination of an improved test method, and revised and expanded labeling information, is designed to enhance the ability of both hearing conservation professionals and the typical consumer, to select appropriate hearing protection devices.

MSHA Health Standards for Occupational Noise Exposure Federal Register from September 13, 1999. This final rule replaces MSHA's existing standards for occupational noise exposure in coal mines and metal and nonmetal mines. The final rule establishes uniform requirements to protect the Nation's miners from occupational noise-induced hearing loss. The rule is derived in part from existing MSHA noise standards, and from the Department of Labor's existing occupational noise exposure standard for general industry promulgated by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

Noise Control, A Guide for Workers and Employers (U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Safety and Health Administration, 1980). This document is an excellent summary of noise control techniques.

Noise Effects Handbook: A Desk Reference to Health and Welfare Effects of Noise (1981). This handbook, from the EPA's Office of Noise Abatement and Control, details the effects noise has on health in areas of communication, sleep, psychologically, physiologically and community among other things.

Prediction of NIPTS Due to Continuous Noise Exposure. From the EPA, this is a PDF file.

Public Health and Welfare Criteria for Noise. From the EPA, this is a PDF file.