Noise Exposure Assessment for a Food Production Company in Oregon

The Center for Disease Control estimates that over 22 million Americans are exposed to hazardous levels of noise at work each year. It’s vital for employers to protect their employees against damaging noise levels from operating equipment, machines or ambient noise. If the exposure is severe enough–and if it remains unmitigated–the risk is permanent occupational-induced hearing loss, a condition that cannot be corrected through hearing aids or surgery.

G2 was retained to perform a noise exposure assessment for a food production company in southern Oregon. The goal was to determine if the company’s employees were being exposed to noise levels that exceeded the regulatory and occupational exposure limits established by Oregon OSHA and the ACGIH. Our Certified Industrial Hygienist performed a personal noise exposure assessment for five people on the production crew as well as area noise mapping to determine if the ambient noise level exceeded the recommended limits.

Three production employees were included in the assessment, all of whom worked on packaging, process cleaning and tasks in one of the two production rooms at the facility. Two additional employees–one maintenance worker and an employee from the warehouse–were also included in the assessment. It was found that four out of the five employees were exposed to noise levels that exceeded the recommended limits. Sources of hazardous noise were identified in association with the production equipment, including the mills and cooling towers.

G2’s recommendations included ongoing monitoring and documentation of the employees’ personal noise exposures, annual training on the hazards of noise exposure and the importance of proper protective measures, as well as continued use of hearing protectors for all exposed personnel.

If you have concerns about noise exposure at your facility, please feel free to contact our team. We’re happy to discuss your situation and how we can support the safety of your employees.