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Prevalence of Hearing Loss Among Noise-Exposed Workers Within the Health Care and Social Assistance Sector, 2003 to 2012
Objective: The purpose was to estimate the prevalence of hearing loss for noise-exposed U.S. workers within the Health Care and Social Assistance (HSA) sector. Methods: Audiograms for 1.4 million workers (8702 within HSA) from 2003 to 2012 were examined. Prevalences and adjusted risks for hearing loss as compared with a reference industry were estimated for the HSA sector and all industries combined. Results: While the overall HSA sector prevalence for hearing loss was 19%, the prevalences in the Medical Laboratories subsector and the Offices of All Other Miscellaneous Health Practitioners subsector...
Noise Exposure Among Federal Wildland Fire Fighters
Hearing loss is one of the most common work-related illnesses in the United States. NIOSH estimates that 22 million U.S. workers encounter noise exposures loud enough to be hazardous. Wildland fire fighting (vs. urban/ structural fire fighting), aims to suppress grass, brush, or forest fires. Wildland fire fighting is considered a high-risk emergency response occupation requiring considerable physical and psychological demands. Wildland fire fighters often work 12 to more than 16 hours per shift for up to 14 consecutive days over a 3- to 9-month period. Source: https://blogs.cdc.gov/niosh...
Modeling acoustic propagation in a compartment fire
Firefighters unable to move and in need of rescue use an audible alarm to signal for help. Rescue teams can then follow this sound to the firefighter. This alarm is governed by NFPA 1982 : Standard on Personal Alert Safety System (PASS). Introduced in 1983, the PASS has saved many firefighter lives. However, a number of incidents have occurred where the PASS is less effective. There have been incidents where the PASS was heard sporadically on the fireground, or where localization of the alarm was difficult, leading to injury and loss of life. We hypothesized that the temperature field created by...
Measuring the acoustic response of a compartment fire
Rescue teams have a small window of time to locate a downed firefighter. Their task is made more difficult due to low visibility, smoke, toxic gases, and high temperatures. In the United States, most firefighters are equipped with a Personal Alarm Safety System (PASS) device that emits an alarm sound, when the firefighter becomes incapacitated. Rescue teams can then follow this sound to the source to locate the downed firefighter. While the PASS device has been enormously successful, anecdotal evidence has shown it fails in some interesting scenarios. For example, cases have been recorded where...
Hearing Loss and Use of Hearing Protection Among Career Firefighters in the United States
Objective : To determine the prevalence and characteristics of noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL) and the use of hearing protection devices (HPDs) among career firefighters. Methods : A Web-based survey and a standard audiometric test were performed with 425 firefighters from three states in the United States. Results : More than 40% showed hearing loss in the noise-sensitive frequencies (4 and 6 kHz). The left ear showed significantly poorer hearing than the right ear. Firefighters having longer years of work in fire services demonstrated significantly worse hearing. Reported use of HPDs was 34...
Promoting Hearing Health among Fire Fighters
Exposure to high noise levels among fire fighters is well documented and increases the risk for noise-induced hearing loss. NIOSH recommends measures to promote better hearing health through the use of quieter equipment, better work practices, hearing protection devices, and implementation of effective hearing loss prevention programs. Source : http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/docs/wp-solutions/2013-142/pdfs/2013-142.pdf
Classrooms with shorter reverberation times lead to a much better signal-to-noise ratio while requiring less vocal effort from teachers
The study presented here is the most extensive, systematic study to examine the impact of reducing reverberation in a working school environment. By installing varying acoustic treatments in three similar classrooms it has been possible to investigate the true effects of different acoustics in occupied schoolrooms. The three classrooms, plus an untreated room, were compared both objectively through acoustic measurements and subjectively through surveying the opinions of pupils, teachers and other adults. The results demonstrate conclusively the benefits to all of improving the acoustic environment...
Pilot task-based assessment of noise levels among firefighters
Over one million American firefighters are routinely exposed to various occupational hazards. While efforts have been made to identify and reduce some causes of injuries and illnesses among firefighters, relatively little has been done to evaluate and understand occupational noise exposures in this group. The purpose of this pilot study was to apply a task-based noise exposure assessment methodology to firefighting operations to evaluate potential noise exposure sources, and to use collected task-based noise levels to create noise exposure estimates for evaluation of risk of noise-induced hearing...
Study on the impact of exposure to noise in professional snipers
Facing an increasing violence level and higher firepower in the hands of criminal organizations (especially those related to drug trafficking), the Military Police of Pernambuco has created, in 1989, the “1a Companhia Independente de Operações Especiais” (1st Independent Company of Special Operations), as a tactical last resort of the Police to be used on special, complex situations. The CIOE progressively makes use of Negotiation measures, of less-than-lethal maneuvers, of Precision Shots and Tactical Assaults. When all possibilities are drained, the Precision Shot will...
Firefighters may be at an increased risk of exposure to high noise levels
45 male firefighters, aged 41.0 years with around 14 years of experience were followed up to characterize their exposures to noise and carbon monoxide. Noise levels were significantly greater on day shifts, among firefighters in non-supervisory jobs, for those working on engine and rescue trucks, by number of emergency calls they attended and in particular for motor vehicle accident (MVA) and building alarms calls, if subjects worked near or used fire equipment, or if they participated in active firefighting training activities. 1% of CO samples exceeded occupational limits, both full-shift and...
Reducing Noise Hazards for Call and Dispatch Center Operators
Workers at call and dispatch cen­ters may suffer health risks asso­ciated with high noise levels from their headsets. T he NIOSH evaluations did not reveal hearing loss problems among call center operators and dispatch­ers that can be directly attributed to noise exposures from their headsets or the surrounding environment. Howev­er, most workers interviewed reported various symptoms often associated with prolonged exposure to high noise levels. Symptoms included ringing in their ears, headaches, irritability, increased tension, and fatigue. There are international standards on...
United Kingdom: Council prosecuted after worker loses movement in hands.
Cheshire East Council was prosecuted by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), United Kingdom, after a 56-year-old mechanic developed a severe form of hand arm vibration syndrome. Since 1984, the worker regularly used heavy-duty vibrating equipment, including pneumatic drills and hand-held grinders. The investigation inspector at HSE explained: "The worker was first diagnosed as developing hand arm vibration syndrome in 2005 but the council failed to take any significant action for nearly four years to stop the condition getting worse. The council should have limited the amount of time he...
A postwoman delivering mail using a low-powered motorcycle was diagnosed with bilateral Raynaud's phenomenon.
This case report presents the hypothesis that the effect of HAV may result not in a single disorder, but in multiple disorders. Although occupational epidemiological studies do not usually address comorbidity, it is not uncommon for exposure to produce multiple effects (e.g. an association between HAV and tendonitis has been reported) . Comorbidity due to occupational exposure therefore needs further epidemiological investigation. For 15 years the woman had driven a two-stroke 50 cc motorcycle to deliver mail and was exposed to hand-arm vibration for 4 h/day. Before delivering the mail, she had...
Les forts niveaux acoustiques présents dans les piscines intérieures poussent les personnes qui souhaitent communiquer à être plus bruyant individuellement (effet Lombard)
En effet, une meilleure qualité acoustique des piscines intérieures diminuerait le niveau de bruit grâce `s ls réduction de la réverbération,mais aussi grâce à celle du niveau sonore généré par chaque personne. Les piscines intérieures sont des lieux où la communication est primordiale, que ce soit pour l'enseignement, pour la diffusion de consignes de sécurité, mais aussi pour la communication entre surveillants en cas d'accident, par exemple. Les auteurs ont mesuré le niveau d'exposition...
Hearing losses occur in firefighters during the early stages of their careers.
On a mean time of 4.1 years, there was deterioration in right and left ears, with the hearing loss in 8% of right and 13% of left ears falling into the 'warning' or 'referral' categories. Most research on firefighter hearing loss has concentrated on effects over a substantial part of, or entire, firefighting career. In this study, 118 firefighters in their early careers were examined for an LGV (large goods vehicle) licence. Mean time between examinations was 4.1 years (range 1.4-12.6 years). The differences in their hearing capacity showed statistical significance . Further work...
Preventing Occupational Exposures to Lead and Noise at Indoor Firing Ranges
The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) requests help in preventing injury and illness in workers at indoor firing ranges in the United States. Workers are potentially exposed to hazardous amounts of lead and noise at these ranges. They include thousands of employees at the firing ranges as well as more than a million Federal, State, and local law officers who train regularly at these facilities. In addition to workers, 20 million active target shooters are potentially exposed to lead and noise hazards at indoor firing ranges. http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/docs/2009-136/

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