OSHA is Concerned About Noise, You Should Be Too

For a guy who is exceptionally sensitive to noise I often wonder why I thought having three kids was a good idea. Don’t get me wrong here, like every other guy in the world, I enjoy the built-in excuse to behave like a 10-year-old. But the noise which accompanies three children, and their friends, may one day be part of the equation for an army’s non-lethal defense system.

For example, a flute playing daughter, a trumpet playing son and another with an inclination for bongos or other assorted drums. Nevermind the memorization and vocalization of myriad Weird Al songs mixed with Crazy Train or Iron Man. Did I mention anything about general screaming, wrestling grunts and assorted crashing sounds I prefer not to find the origin of? How about my luck of moving next door to a child with the most grating voice this side of Fran Drescher?

All in all I prefer the basement door shut, the roar held to a dull one and my Iron Man through a set of mightily insulated headphones (oddly enough music is almost impossible to be too loud). There is something about the sharpness or frequency of constant kid noises that does take its toll.

But all of this noise is, in fact, the result of my choices and I wouldn’t change a thing (though it may be hard to glean that from the above rant). If it weren’t for those kids I would never recognize peace and quiet on the rare occasion it reveals itself. Nor would I be able to tell the difference between the “I’m really hurt” and “I’m faking death” distress calls.

Fortunately I am afforded a job where I can turn my attention to other damaging noises to concentrate upon. The noise of compressed air. Were you aware that OSHA mandates limited exposure noise levels within the workplace and that constant exposure to high decibel levels of noise can damage your ears? OSHA currently recommends hearing protection for any decibel level above 90 dBA. Many work areas exceed this level and should not be entered without hearing protection. But humans being, well, human – we cannot always rely on folks making good decisions when entering such areas.

Some of these loud areas can have the environmental noise levels lowered by reducing the noise levels of compressed air use. Open air lines are notorious for producing decibel levels beyond the safe range. EXAIR recommends outfitting open lines with our engineered Super Air Nozzles, the quietest air nozzles in industry. Other products, Super Air Amplifiers and Super Air Knives will also dramatically lower air noise in the area. Pneumatic Cylinders also get loud when exhausting air and need to be outfitted with mufflers to protect your people from harmful noise levels.

Noise is a dangerous element of many work areas. So dangerous, in fact, OSHA presents exposure guidelines to protect us from it. EXAIR can help you lower noise levels and assist you in providing a better work environment for those hard-working folks who have to deal with it on a daily basis.

Let us know if you would like any additional information. For now, I’m going to see if OSHA has any standards for exposure to loud children…

Kirk Edwards
Application Engineer
kirkedwards@exair.com

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