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The British Tinnitus Association (BTA) has launched a new campaign called ‘Plug’em’, which is aimed at increasing the awareness of hearing damage, particularly among those who enjoy live music, night-clubs and concerts, along with those who work in the entertainment industry.

The BTA has recruited ambassadors from within the music industry to help increase awareness of the problems of tinnitus and how it can be avoided. DJ, producer and musician Mark Ronson was swift to sign up saying: “I’ve had tinnitus for over 10 years and it affects me 24/7. I wish I had been smart enough to Plug’em earlier.” Radio presenter and DJ Anne Savage said “One thing I’d tell my younger self – tinnitus is a lot less cool than wearing earplugs. Don’t take healthy hearing for granted.”

Work

If you work somewhere noisy; i.e. where the decibel level is over 80dB(A), you should be trained and educated to understand the risks involved in working in a noisy environment, and provided with suitable hearing protection if needs be. If you work somewhere where the noise level is over 85dB(A) it is imperative that hearing protection is provided, along with proper instruction on how it should be used.

Leisure

The trouble is that the rules only apply to those who work within the noisy environments; visitors, guests, concert-goers etc are not forced to wear any protection, or to take any precautions to avoid damage to their hearing.

Maximum Exposure Time

Employers have a duty to protect the health and welfare of their employees, and that includes making sure that they are not exposed to dangerous noise levels. To give some idea as to when noise becomes dangerous, the following list gives some decibel ratings and safe exposure times for common noises:

A Kitchen blender operating at 85d(B) – 8 hours

A forklift truck operating at 88 d(B) – 4 hours

A tube train operating at 91 d(B) – 2 hours

A lawnmower operating at 94 d(B) – 1 hour

An Industrial Fire alarm at 97 d(B) – 30 minutes

A hand-held drill at 100 d(B) – 15 minutes

An MP3 player or Walkman at full volume: 103 d(B) – 7.5 minutes

A live rock band at 112 d(B) – 66 seconds

While the performers, sound engineers, bar-staff, security staff and even stewards will most likely use hearing protection, the Plug’em campaign aims to increase the awareness of the public when it comes to the dangers of loud noise within entertainment.

Has your hearing been damaged at work?

If you have been exposed to loud noise in your workplace and your hearing has been affected, you could be entitled to make a claim for compensation. Contact one of our highly experienced solicitors today to find out how we can help you get the payout you deserve.

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