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November 06, 2007

Legislation to protect hearing

The music and entertainment industry is bigger than ever, and louder, too. New legislation is designed to protect those who work in the industry from lifelong hearing damage. But many employers pay scant attention to this serious health threat.

Employees in the UK music and entertainment industry are often exposed to work-related constantly high noise levels, threatening their hearing health, according to a study conducted by RNID. The problem is being addressed in a new government initiative. A new law taking effect in April, 2008, is designed to regulate noise levels in the workplace and prevent music and entertainment workers from suffering work-related hearing loss.

Almost 600.000 people work in the UK music and entertainment industry. As many as 68 percent of employers in the industry are unaware, that they must comply with the new Control of Noise at Work regulations. 55 percent of employers have made no plans for provisions to create acceptable noise levels in their workplaces.

Need to spread the word
”RNID welcomes new Control of Noise regulations, but is concerned that the Government is clearly not doing enough to get the message across to employers in the music and entertainment industries that they must comply with them. Employers have a legal duty to protect their employees from the harmful effects of noise at work and must take these regulations seriously, otherwise the hearing of their workers will be at risk,” said Emma Harrison of RNID in a press release.

According to the new regulations, hearing protection must be made available in all workplaces in the industry. Employees must protect their ears when noise levels exceed 80 dB. The hearing protection must limit average noise levels so they never exceed 87 dB for any individual employee.

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