A person conducting a business or undertaking must ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, that information, training, and instruction are provided to workers and others at the workplace to protect them from health and safety risks.
The information, training, and instruction must, so far as is reasonably practicable, be provided in a way that can be easily understood by any person to whom it is provided.
Training should be provided to:
- those workers who may be exposed to hazardous noise or other agents that may contribute to hearing loss
- their managers and supervisors
- workplace health and safety committees and health and safety representatives
- those responsible for the purchase of plant, noise control equipment, personal hearing
- protectors and for the design, scheduling, organization, and layout of work.
The contents of the training program should include:
- the health and safety responsibilities of each party at the workplace
- how hearing can be affected by exposure to noise
- the detrimental effects hearing loss and tinnitus have on the quality of life, both at work and socially
- the tasks at the workplace that have the potential to give rise to hearing loss and the likely noise exposure level
- how to use noise control measures
- how to select, fit, wear, maintain and store personal hearing protectors
- how to report defects in hearing protectors and noise control equipment or raise any concerns regarding hazardous noise
- the purpose and nature of audiometric testing.
Implementing and maintaining control measures
A noise management plan may help implement the chosen noise control measures effectively. It should identify what action needs to be taken, who will be responsible for taking the action and by when.
The plan should be based on the results of any noise assessment and should also include:
- measuring noise levels to confirm that control measures are achieving expected attenuation
- specifications for purchasing or hiring plan
- a description of any training and supervision that may be needed
- control measures for temporary work areas and situations
- timeframes for reviewing noise assessments and control measures
You must ensure that the control measures you implement remain effective. This includes checking that the control measures are suitable for the nature and duration of the work, are installed, maintained and used correctly. Any noise control measures that are implemented must be reviewed, and if necessary revised, to make sure they work as planned and to maintain, so far as is reasonably practicable, a work environment that is without risks to health and safety.
A person conducting a business or undertaking must review and as necessary revise noise control measures:
- when the control measure does not control the risk so far as is reasonably practicable
- before a change in the workplace that is likely to give rise to a new or different health and safety risk that the control measure may not effectively control
- if a new hazard or risk is identified
- if the results of consultation indicate that a review is necessary
- if a health and safety representative requests a review.
Control measures may be reviewed using the same methods as the initial hazard identification step.
Consult your workers and their health and safety representatives and consider the following:
Are the control measures working effectively in both their design and operation?
- How accurate is the risk assessment process? Are all noisy activities being identified?
- Have new work methods or new plant made the work quieter?
- Has instruction and training provided to workers been successful?
- Have new requirements or information indicated that current controls are no longer the most effective?
- Is an alteration planned to any structure, plant or process that is likely to result in a worker being exposed to hazardous noise?
- Has an incident occurred as a result of a worker being exposed to hazardous noise?
- Have any audiometric tests revealed changes in hearing threshold levels?
You should decide on the time interval between noise assessments by consulting with your workers. Assessment should be repeated whenever there is:
installation or removal of machinery or other noise sources likely to cause a significant change in noise levels
- a change in workload or equipment operating conditions likely to cause a significant change in noise levels or exposure times
- a change in building structure likely to affect noise levels
- a change to working arrangements affecting the length of time workers spends in noisy work areas.
If you design, manufacture or supply products used for work you should check that the product effectively eliminates or minimizes exposure to noise by obtaining feedback from users. This can help in determining whether any improvements can be made. Eliminating noise in the early stages of product planning (at the source) is more effective and usually cheaper than making changes after noise hazards are introduced into the workplace.
Information, Training, And Instruction to Control the Noise
Information, Training, And Instruction to Control the Noise, The information, training, and instruction must, so far as is reasonably practicable, be provided in a way that can be easily understood by any person to whom it is provided.