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PDFWAC 296-307-63205

Conduct employee noise exposure monitoring.

You must:
• Conduct employee noise exposure monitoring to determine the employee's actual exposure when reasonable information indicates that any employee's exposure may equal or exceed 85 dBA TWA8.
• Representative monitoring may be used where several employees perform the same tasks in substantially similar conditions
• Examples of information or situations that can indicate exposures which equal or exceed 85 dBA TWA8, include:
– Noise in the workplace that interferes with people speaking, even at close range
– Information from the manufacturer of equipment you use in the workplace that indicates high noise levels for machines in use
– Reports from employees of ringing in their ears or temporary hearing loss
– Warning signals or alarms that are difficult to hear
– Work near abrasive blasting or jack hammering operations
– Use of tools and equipment such as the following:
■ Heavy equipment or machinery
■ Fuel-powered hand tools
■ Compressed air-driven tools or equipment in frequent use
■ Power saws, grinders or chippers
■ Powder-actuated tools.
You must:
• Follow applicable guidance in WAC 296-307-634 when conducting noise exposure monitoring
• Make sure your sampling for noise exposure monitoring identifies:
– All employees whose exposure equals or exceeds the following:
■ 85 dBA TWA8 (noise dosimetry, providing an average exposure over an eight-hour time period)
■ 115 dBA (slow response sound level meter, identifying short-term noise exposures)
■ 140 dBC (fast response sound level meter, identifying almost instantaneous noise exposures).
– Exposure levels for selection of hearing protection.
• Provide exposed employees and their representatives with an opportunity to observe any measurements of employee noise exposure that are conducted
• Notify each employee whose exposure equals or exceeds 85 dBA TWA8 of the monitoring results within five working days of when you receive the results
• Conduct additional noise monitoring whenever a change in production, process, equipment or controls, may reasonably be expected to result in:
– Additional employees whose exposure equals or exceeds 85 dBA TWA8
– Employees exposed to higher level of noise requiring more effective hearing protection.
Conditions that may be expected to increase exposure include:
• Adding machinery to the work area
• Increasing production rates
• Removal or deterioration of noise control devices
• Increased use of noisy equipment
• Change in work schedule
• Change of job duties.
[Statutory Authority: RCW 49.17.010, 49.17.040, 49.17.050, 49.17.060. WSR 05-01-166, § 296-307-63205, filed 12/21/04, effective 4/2/05.]
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