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Definition - What does Noise mean?

Noise, within the context of workplace health and safety, refers to the sound levels in and around the worksite. Specifically, noise refers to unwanted sounds or those that may have a negative effect on workplace safety, productivity, and employee hearing. Employers should seek to control or mitigate hazardous noise in the workplace in order to prevent injury and improve job quality.

SureHire explains Noise

Noise in the workplace can include a range of unwanted sounds, from distracting annoyances to continuous high decibel levels that lead to hearing loss. This noise pollution can reduce productivity by impairing an employee's ability to concentrate or create a hazardous environment where safety is compromised due to employees' inability to communicate clearly.

In workplaces where employees are exposed to continuous noise, permanent hearing loss may result. In order to reduce the risks associated with workplace noise, an employer should consult with employees to evaluate their needs.

A noise audit, or assessment, may also be used to alert an employer to specific noise hazards. Noise reduction practices such as sound buffering or insulation and noise mitigation through the use of personal protective equipment should be employed in order to maintain a safe, productive, and comfortable workplace.

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