Hearing loss can sneak up on a person over time — especially if it’s caused by exposure to loud noise on a daily basis. Approximately 22 million people are exposed to noise at work every day that’s significant enough to cause hearing loss. In fact, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), hearing loss is the most common type of work-related injury in the country.
Businesses have a responsibility to measure the noise level in workplaces that are very loud. Noise levels over 85 dB for a sustained period can endanger hearing. However, even if the noise level in a workplace is below that, the equipment that a person is using can bring the level they’re experiencing to well over that.
Employers also have a responsibility to provide workers with protection like earplugs and to educate them about the importance of using ear protection.
People in some professions are at particular risk for long-term hearing loss — especially when appropriate precautions are consistently taken. These professions include:
- Airport work
Even partial hearing loss can impact a person’s ability to do their job as well as to get a job in many other industries. State workers’ compensation rules around hearing loss vary. Here in Pennsylvania, a person is eligible to receive workers’ comp if they have at least 10% hearing loss in both ears. The greater the hearing loss, the longer a person is eligible to receive workers’ comp.
If you are having difficulty getting the workers’ comp you believe you’re entitled to, an experienced attorney can provide valuable help and guidance.