SEMA eNews Vol. 13, No. 43, October 28, 2010

OSHA Clarifies Industry Noise Exposure Standards

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is proposing to interpret its industry noise exposure standards to require employers to implement “feasible administrative” or “engineering controls to reduce noise to acceptable standards.” OSHA is clarifying that personal protective equipment, such as ear plugs and ear muffs, could only be used as supplements when administrative or engineering controls are not completely effective. OSHA notes that the term “feasible” would have an ordinary meaning of “achievable” or “capable of being done.”

In its proposed enforcement of the standard, OSHA would consider administrative or engineering controls to be economically feasible if they do not threaten the employer’s ability to remain in business or if the threat to viability results from the employer’s having failed to keep up with industry and health standards.

SEMA is currently reviewing the proposed interpretation. For more information, contact Stuart Gosswein at stuartg@sema.org.

 

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