Environment -Noise pollution

Environment -Noise pollution

Noise is unwanted level of sound, which is measured in decibels. Noise that exceeds 75 decibels irrespective of exposure duration can be called as excessive noise.
Source of noise pollution:

Ø Commercial & Industrial activities
Ø Transportation
Ø Household sources
Ø Social events
Effects of noise pollution:
Generally, problems caused by noise pollution include stress related illness, speech interference, hearing loss, sleep disruption. Most importantly there are two major effects as follows;

v Hearing effects:

The immediate and acute effect of noise pollution to a person, over a period of time, is impairment of hearing. Prolonged exposure to impulsive noise to a person will damage their ear drum, which may result in a permanent hearing impairment
v Effects on general health:
Health effects of noise include anxiety, stress reaction and in extreme cases fright. The physiological manifestations are headaches, irritability and nervousness, felling of fatigue and decrease work efficiency.

Control Measures:
Engineering controls:
Ø Involve modifying or replacing equipment, or making related physical changes at the noise source or along the transmission path to reduce the noise level at the worker's ear
Ø Maintain and lubricate machinery and equipment (e.g., oil bearings)
Ø Place a barrier between the noise source and employee (e.g., sound walls or curtains)
Ø  Enclose or isolate the noise source

Administrative controls:

Ø Changes in the workplace or schedule that reduce or eliminate the worker exposure to noise Such as;
v Operating noisy machines during shifts when fewer people are exposed
v  Limiting the amount of time a person spends at a noise source
v Providing quiet areas where workers can gain relief from hazardous noise sources
v Controlling noise exposure through distance is often an effective
Ø Noise survey is to be conducted in the work place with the use of decibel meter and work place should be divided in to two zones namely noise zones and noise free zones
Ø Signage’s are to be placed in the noise zone areas and unauthorized entry to noise zone areas
must be restricted

Personal protective equipment:

Ø Depending up on the noise levels personal protective should be selected. The common types of hearing protective equipment are as follows;
Ø Earplugs can reduce noise levels from 10 to 15 decibels
Ø Earmuffs can reduce noise levels from 30 to 45 decibels
Ø The process of reducing noise levels by using hearing protective equipment is called
Ø The good attenuation levels are in between 75 to 80 decibels
The louder you honk, faster your health will conk

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