The employer shall administer a continuing, effective Hearing Conservation program, as described in this section, whenever employee noise exposures equal or exceed an 8 hour time-weighted average sound level of 85 decibels measured on the A-scale (slow response) or, equivalently, a dose of fifty percent. For purposes of the hearing conservation program, employee noise exposures shall be computed in accordance with Appendix A and Table A-1 and without regard to any attenuation provided by the use of personal protective equipment.
(1) When information indicates that any employee’s exposure may equal or exceed an 8-hour time-weighted average of 85 decibels, the employer shall obtain measurements for employees who may be exposed at or above that level. Such determinations shall be made by December 1, 1982.
(2) The monitoring requirement shall be met by either area monitoring or personal monitoring that is representative of the employee’s exposure.
(A) The sampling strategy shall be designed to identify employees for inclusion in the hearing conservation program and to enable the proper selection of hearing protectors.
(B) Where circumstances such as high worker mobility, significant variations in sound level, or a significant component of impulse noise make area monitoring generally inappropriate, the employer shall use representative personal sampling to comply with the monitoring requirements of this section unless the employer can show that area sampling produces equivalent results.
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