Guide to Hearing Loss
Hearing loss is a common injury that can remain unnoticed for years as it develops gradually. Most people accept a certain level of hearing loss with age. However, if that hearing loss is due to previous exposure to excessive noise at work, a claim for compensation for noise induced hearing loss may be made. As we deal with these claims on a ‘no win no fee’ basis there is nothing to lose by investigating a potential claim.
Many of our clients often comment that they did not like to complain about the noise levels at work because they were happy to have a job and did not want to ‘rock the boat’. Regardless of this, employers should have provided suitable conditions for their employees and clients should not feel as though they are not entitled to make a claim. Noise induced hearing loss is a permanent loss and therefore clients should investigate whether a claim can be made as they will have to live with the damage caused by their previous employers forever.
Guide to Noise Levels
|Vocal Effort Needed||Noise Levels: dB(A)||Noise Levels: dB(A)||Noise Levels: dB(A)|
|Close to ear||2 feet away||4 feet away|
|Normal Voice||—||—||Less than 81|
|Very loud voice||—||—||93|
|Impossible||—||—||More than 110|
Typical Noise Levels
|20||Bedroom at night|
|40||Suburban Living room|
|70||Traffic on a street corner|
|80||Inside a bus|
|90||Inside an underground train|
|100||Grinder, circular saw|
|110||Loud Motor Horn|
|120||Sandblast machine, propeller engine|
|130||Pneumatic road breaker|
|140||Jet engine, pain threshold|
NB. A 3dB increase in the noise level represents a doubling of the noise intensity i.e. a noise at 93dB is twice as intense as a noise at 90dB (although to the human ear a 3dB change is barely noticeable).
A 10dB increase represents a 10 fold increase in noise intensity.
A 20dB increase represents a 100 fold increase in noise intensity (e.g. 90dB is 100 times more intense than a noise of 70dB).
Expected attenuation values for hearing protectors
|Class of Hearing Protection||Attenuation (dB)|
|Dry cotton wool and music headphones||0|
|Waxed Cotton wool||5|
|Soft plastic ear plugs||10|
|Canal caps (suprameatal plugs on headband)||10|
|Personalised ear moulds||10|
|Glass down ear plus (e.g. Bilsom)||15|
|Plastic foam ear plugs (e.g. E.A.R. range)||15|
|Earmuffs (ear defenders)||20|
If you have an enquiry and would like to discuss a claim or injury on a no obligation basis please feel free to contact us on 01244 312306.