A new Web page from OSHA is designed to help prevent occupational hearing loss. The Noise and Hearing Conservation eTool is a joint product of OSHA's alliance with the National Hearing Conservation Association.

The new eTool features information on what is considered occupational noise and its potential health effects. It also provides detailed guidance on how to properly evaluate noise exposure and what constitutes an effective hearing conservation program. The eTool can be found at http://www.osha.gov/dts/osta/otm/noise/index.html.

The site also references OSHA noise exposure standards and employer responsibilities. OSHA requires employers to determine if workers are exposed to excessive noise in the workplace. If so, employers must implement feasible engineering or administrative controls to eliminate or reduce hazardous levels of noise. Where controls are not sufficient, employers must implement an effective hearing conservation program.

"This new tool offers practical information to help eliminate hearing loss for millions of workers who are exposed to high noise levels on the job," said Acting Assistant Secretary of Labor for OSHA Jonathan L. Snare. "We are fortunate to have worked closely with industry experts in order to provide this information to those who need it most."