Selecting Hearing PPE

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Important Guidance on how to select the correct levels of hearing personal protective equipment (PPE) to comply with the Noise at Work Regulations.

how to select the correct level of hearing PPE

  • What is hearing PPE?
  • Why and when is it needed? 
  • Summary of the 3 main ways to select hearing PPE (1. SNR (Single Number Rating), 2. HML Method (High, Medium, Low parameters) and 3. Octave Band Analysis)
  • Worked examples showing how to select the correct level of Hearing PPE using the SNR and HML Method of selecting hearing protection.

It is vital to select the correct level of hearing personal protective equipment (PPE) for workers so that they are protected from noise-induced hearing loss in the workplace.  The level at which employers must provide hearing protection (and employees must wear it) is now 85 decibels (daily (Lep,d) or weekly average exposure (Lep,w)) and the level at which employers must assess the risk to workers' health and provide them with information and training is now 80 decibels. If your workers are exposed to levels of noise between 80-85 dB(A) you should also make hearing protection available to them (although it is not mandatory that they wear it). 

Working out which hearing protection you need doesn't have to be complicated - read our Free Guide and find out more. You can also check the HSE's information on hearing protection too. 


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