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Environment, Health and Safety Division
Hearing Conservation

Noise sources at the Berkeley Lab are associated with, but not limited to, the Facilities and Engineering shops, mechanical rooms throughout the site, construction projects, and emergency generators. Engineering controls, such as enclosing noise sources (i.e., pumps, generators) and acoustical material (i.e., mechanical room walls and ceilings) are implemented when feasible. EHS Industrial Hygienists evaluate high noise areas and/or tasks with sound level meters and noise dosimeters. Employees exposed to noise levels in excess of 85 decibels, measured as an 8-hour Time Weighted Average (TWA), will be enrolled in the Lab's Hearing Conservation Program. Employees enrolled in the Program receive an initial baseline audiogram and training upon enrollment and annually thereafter. Hearing protection is recommended anytime an employee is exposed to noise levels of 85 dBA or greater, irrespective of the duration of exposure. Hearing protection is required at LBL if there is a potential to be exposed in excess of the TLV, which is 85 dBA for an 8-hour TWA. Hearing protection is available through eBuy and the PPE vending machine in 76-105. Contact Herb Toor at x5918 if you would like to request a noise evaluation or need assistance with selecting appropriate hearing protection.