In April 2006, the Control of Noise at Work Regulations came into force and the following limits for personal exposure to noise at work were implemented:
Lower Exposure Action Value: a daily or weekly personal noise exposure of 80 dB(A) and a peak pressure level of 135 dB(C)
At this level employers are required to provide suitable information and training, and hearing protection for those who request such. Employers also have a duty to provide hearing tests if there is evidence that their employees’ hearing is at risk;
Upper Exposure Action Value: a daily or weekly personal noise exposure of 85 dB(A) and a peak pressure level of 137 dB(C)
At this level employers have a duty to put in place control measures to reduce noise levels; designate ear protection zones and ensure that workers wear hearing protection. Employees now have a right to hearing tests;
Exposure Limit Value: a daily or weekly average personal noise exposure of 87 dB(A) and a peak pressure level of 140 dB(C)
Employers will be required to ensure that employee noise exposure, taking into account any hearing protection worn, does not exceed this value.
Ryder Partnership Ltd can provide this service by conducting walkthrough surveys with a precision sound level meter, recording continuous equivalent noise exposures (Leqs), supplemented with personal dosimetry where appropriate.
From these measurements total daily exposures (LEP,d) can be calculated and compared to the exposure action values. Octave band analysis for noisier operations is also available to help determine the correct level of protection required for employees.
The resulting report will include noise maps of the site, also showing where hearing protection zones are required. There will also be full recommendations on how the company can comply with the regulations with regard to the findings of the survey.
If you would like to talk to us regarding the conducting of a noise survey please call us on 01952 290871 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
The Vibration at Work Regulations 2005 apply to both hand-arm and whole-body vibration. They make provision for:
- Action values and limit values for daily exposure to vibration (regulation 4);
- Risk assessment (regulation 5);
- Elimination or, where elimination is not reasonably practicable, reduction of exposure to vibration to as low a level as is reasonably practicable (regulation 6(1));
- A programme of measures to be taken at the action values to reduce exposure to vibration to as low a level as is reasonably practicable (regulation 6(2));
- Actions to be taken at the limit values and prohibition on exceeding the limit values (regulation 6(4));
- Weekly averaging of exposure to vibration in specified circumstances
- Health surveillance (regulation 7); and
- Information, instruction and training (regulation 8)
Ryder Partnership Ltd is able to measure exposed hand arm vibration as well as for the whole body.
Where vibration levels are excessive, there is an accepted hierarchy of measures to control the problem with PPE (such as vibration gloves) being the last in the hierarchy.
The first action is to attempt to replace the process by an alternative process. A significant improvement can be obtained by replacing old or badly maintained tools.
Failing that it may be necessary to limit workers time in using the equipment. Environmental Efficiency can help advise of the most appropriate measures to take according to the vibration risk assessment, in order to avoid the hand arm vibration issue.
Measurement of Excessive Vibration Levels
Power tool data sheets, based on ISO 28927, specify the vibration level of the tool based on standard laboratory tests. This data is only intended as guidance when comparing one brand or type of tool with another.
It is not a guide to the actual vibration level experienced by a user in real life situations. Therefore the manufacturer’s published data cannot be used in place of vibration risk assessment. Monitoring of the tool in action is therefore essential to ensure exposure limits are not breached.
Ryder Partnership Ltd is able to monitor hand arm vibration and for the whole body. We will also state whether regulations are being adhered too. Where vibration levels are too high, we can specify the maximum exposure time to ensure compliance
If you would like to talk to us regarding the conducting of a hand arm or whole body survey please call us on 01952 290871 or