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Safety around loud noise - fact sheet

Protection against noise

If your worksite has risk-level noise you need to provide hearing protection equipment for staff, and train them to use it. Noise level is assessed under the Australian Standard AS 1269-1989 “Acoustics – Hearing conservation” and measured by specific equipment. It must be checked by an occupational health expert, and you can proactively ask them to test noise levels on your worksite if you’re concerned. The main aim is to seek ways to remove or lessen the noise.


General noise measure

Noise-level risk is measured at 85 db. This generally means that if a worker has to shout at someone no more than a metre away in order to be heard, the noise level is too high.


Deal with the risk

The process for dealing with loud noise at a worksite is to:

  1. measure it
  2. try to remove the source of the noise if the measure shows levels are hazardous
  3. try to reduce the source of the noise if it can’t be removed through engineering solutions, eg baffles, maintenance, walling off
  4. issue hearing protection that’s appropriate for the task and the noise level, if the noise level is still over 85 db
  5. provide ‘hazardous noise’ warning signs, machinery labels, or any other clear, easily understood messages
  6. monitor staff hearing to ensure the protection process continues to work.


Further information about how to manage noise hazards



Health and Safety in Employment Regulations 1995, regulation 11


Last updated 5 April 2016


On Monday 4 April 2016, the New Health and Safety at Work Act 2015 (HSWA) came into effect.

HSWA repeals the Health and Safety in Employment Act 1992, with immediate effect.

All references to the 1992 Act on this website and within our guidance will be progressively removed.