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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Occupational noise induced hearing loss and engineered noise control : knowledge and perception in the food products manufacturing industry in British Columbia Nahid, Musarrat


Workplaces primarily rely on hearing protection devices (HPDs) for prevention of occupational noise induced hearing loss (NIHL). This study was initiated to investigate the potential barriers to the implementation of engineered noise control (ENC) which is considered to be the best prevention measure. The study investigated knowledge and perception about NIHL and ENC among decision-makers and workers in the food products manufacturing industry in British Columbia. We contacted company Health and Safety Departments. They were sent packages of questionnaires and return envelopes for distribution among specified subjects. Follow-up phone calls were made to increase participation. Analysis included descriptive statistics, nonparametric methods and simple and multiple logistic regressions. Twenty-two companies and 92 individuals participated (response rate 32.5%). Nearly two-third of the respondents were non-management. A similar proportion was involved in health and safety activities. The majority of the respondents perceived NIHL to be a big disadvantage and said that they would be bothered by it. Respondents were knowledgeable about the effects of noise exposure on health but had poor knowledge about harmful levels of noise, ENC and the limitations of HPDs. They considered HPDs, hearing tests and education to be more effective in preventing NIHL than ENC. Management showed poorer knowledge and lower perception than non-management. Those involved in health and safety performed slightly better than those who were not involved in such activities. Interventions should be undertaken to educate management about ENC options and limitations of HPDs. Regulatory agency should create special branches to help workplaces in choosing suitable ENC.

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Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International