New Zealand's Law on Noise in the Workplace
WorkSafe has a lot of great resources that explain how you can manage the risk of exposure to noise at work. But we like summaries, so here's the sound bites of what you need to know.
You must, so far as is reasonably practicable, make sure that none of your workers (or people that visit your workplace) are exposed to noise levels:
Equivalent to 85 decibels averaged over 8 hours, or
A peak noise level over 140 decibels.
This always applies, whether or not your workers are wearing hearing protection.
Decibels are hard, so an easy way to know whether or not you might need a hearing conservation program is if you have to raise your voice to talk to someone an arm's length (1m) away.
You can also get an idea of actual decibel readings by using free phone apps to measure your sound. You'd need it to be calibrated to actually even consider referring to it, but if you're looking at taking sound readings for your workplace, talk to us, and we'll see if we can arrange for a free basic calibration or noise sample for you.
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