Can This New Workplace Safety App Protect Your Hearing?
Hearing loss is the most common workplace injury in America. The Centers for Disease Control estimates 22 million workers are exposed to dangerous levels of noise each year. To help workers avoid occupational hearing loss, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) has created a smartphone app that measures dangerous sound levels in the workplace.
NIOSH developed the app by evaluating 192 other sound measurement apps available for Android and Apple devices. Of those apps, NIOSH selected 4 that would serve as the blueprint for its own version.
Here’s how it works. Users of this app can record the sound levels of their workplaces or job tasks and share the results online. The results pool together into a massive database. Workers within specific industries could see how their employers compare to others across the country. This would allow workers to make an informed decision on hearing hazards present at their jobs. If a worker wished, they could ask for other tasks at work or find new jobs that do not pose the same risks to their hearing.
Unfortunately, this app is not available for Android phones. Sorry, only Apple phones at the moment. NIOSH is trying to create an Android version.
How Else Can Workers Prevent Occupational Hearing Loss?
There are other ways workers can prevent occupational hearing loss. However, it also helps when employers also have policies to protect workers. Employers should identify sources of noise that pose a risk to workers. Once sources are identified, workers should receive equipment, such as earplugs, that can help prevent damage to hearing. If possible, employers should eliminate sources of noise that pose a risk to workers.
Workers who do experience occupational hearing loss should contact an Ohio workers comp attorney at Larrimer & Larrimer, LLC to explore options for benefits.