Document Detail

A controlled investigation of in-field attenuation performance of selected insert, earmuff, and canal cap hearing protectors.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  1800294     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
A field study assessed the actual spectral noise attenuation achieved by 40 industrial workers wearing four different hearing protection devices (HPDs) while on the job. The effect of two different HPD fitting procedures (subject fit vs. trained fit) on attenuation performance over two three-week periods of protector use was determined. Subjects were retrieved from their workplaces without prior knowledge of when they were to be tested and were not permitted to readjust the fit of their HPDs. Attenuation data were then collected using psychophysical procedures testing real ear attenuation at threshold. Statistical analyses indicated that the earplugs' attenuation significantly improved when training for proper fitting was used, whereas the earmuff and the ear canal cap were relatively insensitive to the training effect. The training was most effective for a slow-recovery foam plug over the three-week period. Results confirmed that laboratory protocols designed to simulate workplace influences on attenuation may not be relied on to yield reasonable estimates of field protection performance of HPDs, particularly for earplugs; however, the laboratory results were much better predictors of field protection for the earmuff. This study also demonstrated that the labeled manufacturers' noise reduction ratings (NRRs) substantially overestimated the actual field attenuation performance.
M Y Park; J G Casali
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Human factors     Volume:  33     ISSN:  0018-7208     ISO Abbreviation:  Hum Factors     Publication Date:  1991 Dec 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  1992-04-17     Completed Date:  1992-04-17     Revised Date:  2007-11-14    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0374660     Medline TA:  Hum Factors     Country:  UNITED STATES    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  693-714     Citation Subset:  IM; S    
Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg 24061.
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MeSH Terms
Ear Protective Devices / standards*
Hearing Loss, Noise-Induced / prevention & control*
Middle Aged
Occupational Exposure
Grant Support

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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