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Safety Shooter “Of all of the regrettable things of working as a shotcrete nozzleman for more than 25 years, it is the perceived lack of importance I have given to basic personal protective devices (PPDs). Continuous, preventable exposure to our very loud work environment has caused irreversible damage that I must live with daily. We all share the belief that we are somehow insulated from many common work hazards. Please consider how we take hearing for granted in our daily lives. Permanent hearing damage is preventable by the use of inexpensive ear protection.” —Oscar Duckworth (regular Shotcrete magazine contributor) There are many different types of hearing out 32 decibels of overall loudness. Attenuating protection: foam earplugs, custom earplugs, hard that much noise would bring our nozzleman and hat mounted over ear covers, and circum-aural pump operator into a much safer noise exposure headsets. Manufacturers of these products level, dramatically lowering their risk of perma- include a noise reduction rating (NRR) number nent hearing damage. that tells us to define how much sound attenua- Protecting our hearing is vitally important to tion the product provides (refer to Fig. 3(a) and our quality of life. Shotcrete workers are exposed (b)). For example, a common manufacturer of to high-intensity levels of sound for long periods foam inserted earplugs have an NRR rating of of time. It is essential we make hearing protection 32, meaning when worn properly it will block a high priority while on the job. References 1. “Workplace Safety & Health Topics—Noise and Hear- ing Loss Prevention,” Centers for Disease Control and Preven- tion, Atlanta, GA, 2014, http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/topics/ noise/. (last accessed March 30, 2015) 2. “Noise Exposure Computation,” Occupational Safety & Health Administration, Washington, DC, 2015, https://www. osha.gov/pls/oshaweb/owadisp.show_document?p_ table=STANDARDS&p_id=9736. (last accessed March 30, 2015) Fig. 3(a): Custom-molded earplugs Derek Pay is the President and CEO of Oceanside Construction in Salt Lake City, UT. He re- ceived his BA from the Univer- sity of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT, and has been in the shotcrete industry for over 10 years. He is a certified nozzleman in ver- tical and overhead techniques and currently in- stalls shotcrete throughout the Intermountain west. Amanda L. Pay, AuD, has been a clinical audiologist for 10 years, working in various areas such as Washington, DC, and currently practices at Mountain West Ear, Nose, and Throat in Salt Lake City, UT. She received her BS in speech pathology and audiology and her MS in audi- ology from the University of Utah and her doc- torate (AuD) degree from Salus University, Fig. 3(b): Manufacturer’s details on foam Elkins Park, PA. She is a Fellow in the American earplugs Academy of Audiology. 68 Shotcrete • Spring 2015


2015SpringShotcreteEMag
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