Four Weeks of Movember

Well November is over and shaving is back, but the beard and I had a good run and quite a bit of fun.  Here is the respectable picture with the beard.

Four Weeks of Movember

But while I shaved it off, I did try a couple of different looks.

One honoring our 21st President Chester A Arthur

To continue our highlight of Occupational Health Risks from earlier this Movember, OSHA has put out additional material on the dangers of noise, a serious threat to men’s and woman’s health in the workplace.  Sound is often over looked as a health risk, because its effects are not visible. The worst of the effects are typically not noticed until many years later, and it is very difficult or impossible to repair. According to OSHA’s website, The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) publishes annual  statistics for occupational injuries (including hearing loss) reported by  employers as part of required record keeping. The BLS data show that hearing  loss represented 12% of the occupational illnesses reported in 2010.  This represents more than 18,000 workers who experienced significant loss of  hearing due to workplace noise exposure.

To curtail, noise relate hearing loss OSHA outlines a detailed plan include the following (3) Home Runs.

Three Significant Home Runs

  1. Get a handle on pneumatic and compressed air  devices and machine controls,
  2. Implement an Acoustical Maintenance Program  to maintain existing noise controls and keep  machinery in good working order, and
  3. Go all the way with machine guarding to  include the acoustical benefits (pennies on the  dollar).

These three items will provide the greatest noise reduction per dollar invested, and can even have a payback in dollars through energy savings and life expectancy of equipment.

Let’s just look at Home Run number one.  In most plants, compressed air can easily be responsible for 25-33% of plant’s noise problems.  Noise is generated by turbulent gases mixing at widely different velocities.  One of the easiest ways of curtailing noise is to install Air Knives or Air Nozzles on any open pipe or homemade blow devices that will eliminate turbulent flow.  This will have the added benefit of reducing air consumption and eliminate the risk of dead-ended compressed air onto human skin.

At EXAIR, we have done a variety of studies and testing to determine the noise level on all of our products, so that you could do a survey with a Sound Level Meter at quantify your noise reduction at every work station.  Any noise reduction can have a significant impact on hearing loss for employees, and their current and future quality of life.

Dave Woerner
Application Engineer