Hearing loss near the top of the workplace illness list

Did you know that, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), occupational hearing loss is one of the most common U.S. work-related illnesses? Roughly 22 million U.S. workers are exposed to dangerous noise levels at work each year. OSHA estimates that in 2016, U.S. businesses paid more than $1.5 million in penalties for not protecting workers from hazardous noise, and about $242 million is spent each year on workers’ compensation for hearing disability costs.

Reducing the hazards of workplace noise

The good news? While noise-induced hearing loss is irreversible, it is also completely preventable. Check out some of OSHA’s recommendations to contribute to a quieter work environment:

  • Implement an effective and comprehensive hearing conservation program.
  • Choose low-noise tools and machinery the next time you update your equipment.
  • Enclose or isolate the noise source.
  • Limit the amount of time each employee spends at a noise source.
  • When these controls are not feasible, provide hearing protection devices such as earmuffs and plugs.

Click here for OSHA’s overview and standards for occupational noise exposure.

Online safety training videos for insureds

Our insureds and agents have access to an extensive library of online safety training videos and supplemental materials. Click here to view this month’s recommended video, To the Point About: Preventing Hearing Loss. Insureds and agents can request login credentials by emailing SafetyResourceRequest@summitholdings.com. (Videos provided through Long Island Productions, Inc., dba Training Network NOW, a Summit Vendor)

Please contact your Summit loss prevention consultant if you have any questions.


The information presented in this publication is intended to provide guidance and is not intended as a legal interpretation of any federal, state or local laws, rules or regulations applicable to your business. The loss prevention information provided is intended only to assist policyholders of Summit managed insurers in the management of potential loss producing conditions involving their premises and/or operations based on generally accepted safe practices. In providing such information, Summit Consulting LLC does not warrant that all potential hazards or conditions have been evaluated or can be controlled. It is not intended as an offer to write insurance for such conditions or exposures. The liability of Summit Consulting LLC and its managed insurers is limited to the terms, limits and conditions of the insurance policies underwritten by any of them.