Some hearing facts are surprising, and some are not. This hearing fact falls in the “not surprising” category.
Not surprising because of course the construction industry is loud. Think hammers, power tools and heavy equipment, eight-plus hours a day every day. Being immersed and surrounded in that kind of noise on a daily basis is going to accumulate.
So, when a recent study by the Center for Construction Research and Training found that 58 percent of former construction workers had some form of hearing loss, maybe the real surprise should be “only 58 percent?”
Fortunately, the number isn’t higher thanks to occupational noise exposure regulations and hearing protection requirements that OSHA put in place decades ago. And also because we know so much more about hearing loss and have designed more sophisticated hearing protection products than we did decades ago.
But it’s still too high.
You don’t have to be a construction worker to be diligent about protecting your hearing.