Control of Noise at Work Regulation
On 6 April 2006, the Control of Noise at Work regulation replaced
the 1990 Noise at Work regulation. The aim of the regulations is
to reduce the risk of hearing loss / deafness due to exposure to
high noise levels. Noise-induced hearing loss is permanent and incurable.
It adds to the hearing loss that occurs naturally through ageing.
This can result in a very severe handicap later in life, making
it very difficult to hear what others are saying, and spoiling enjoyment
of music, etc.
Control of Noise at Work Regulations Simplified
The requirements of the Control of Noise at Work regulation were
specified by a European regulation - EU Directive (Physical
Agents - Noise). This greatly complicates the situation regarding
noise at work. Whereas the 1990 Noise at Work regulation had 3 action
levels, the Control of Noise at Work regulations have 6!
However, most companies do not have to concern themselves with
4 of the action levels within the Control of Noise at Work regulation.
Most companies only need to be concerned with 2 action levels. These
are shown below, together with the main actions required by the
Control of Noise at Work regulation:-
at and above:
||Reduce noise levels
||Wear ear protectors
||Install warning signs
||Provide regular hearing tests
||Measure / assess workers' noise exposures. Repeat
when there have been significant changes, and at suitable
intervals (HSE recommends reviews at least every 2 years).
||Train workers on hearing loss risks and how to minimise
||Make ear protectors available.
||Provide regular hearing tests for any employees who
are particularly susceptible to noise-induced hearing
In a few companies, workers are subjected to very high levels of
impact noise (peaks of 135 dBC, or above). Where noise peaks of
this level are likely to occur, the regulations apply additional
(peak) noise action levels. Such high levels of noise are rare,
and this only affects a few companies.
In due course, more detailed information on the Control of Noise
at Work regulations will be added to this page. We will also update
the page when any changes are made to the regulations. To
find this page quickly in future, copy the following and
then paste it into your own website as a link:
at Work Regulations</a>
To obtain details of the peak noise action levels, or more information
on the Control of Noise at Work regulation, please click on contact us about control of noise at work regulation, and then select "Noise at Work guide".
For more information on the risks and effects of exposure to loud noise, click on effects of loud noise at work
Advanced Noise Solutions Ltd : 01727 864667