Business, Employment Law, Howarths Law, HowarthsLaw, HR

Noise in the Workplace – what are the legal requirements?

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How many times do bulletins come through from various sources identifying that yet another business or director has been prosecuted for failing to comply with even the most basic of health and safety requirements and legislation.
Take noise within the workplace for example. You can walk into a multitude of workplaces from wood working to engineering companies and be faced with the same scene; high levels of noise and employees not wearing hearing protection, or wearing them incorrectly.
The most basic and fundamental piece of legislation requires all employers to assess the hazards to which their employees, and others, may be exposed, noise being just one such hazard.
If noise levels within your workplace are found to be between current lower and upper action levels you must provide hearing protection upon request, however where levels are above the upper action level then there is a risk of ill health through hearing loss, therefore hearing protection must be provided and made mandatory within the workplace.
That said, this is where many businesses fall foul of the legal requirements, as many will feel that it is the employees’ responsibility to wear the personal protective equipment. However, the employer holds the duty of care towards the employee and must therefore enforce the wearing of the selected personal protective equipment.
It is not enough to simply say “we provided it, its up to them to wear it”
If you would like any further advice on Health & Safety within your workplace then contact Howarths on 01274 864 999.

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