Although some construction employers ignore the harm that noise produced by construction processes can do to their workers, it becomes difficult to ignore when even the public begin to complain. This is what a Gladstone construction site is facing after local B&B owners complained about the noise emitted by one construction site who decided to work overtime one night.
In addition to the noise, the neighbors also complained about the light from flood lights which streamed into their property as the construction site attempted to catch up on their work.
Read what happened according to an article on gladstoneobserver.com.au
Surrounded by seven projects, the Auckland Hill Corporate Accommodation couple was upset on Monday night when the nearby Hutchinson Builders’ construction site went over time.
“In the rules it is 6.30am to 6.30pm Monday to Saturday, which equates to 72 hours a week,” Mrs Mitchell said.
“If building sites have (problems), which they all do, then we as neighbours should not be putting up with it.”
Flood lights from the Auckland St apartment development streamed into their residence and noise continued until about 9.30pm.
The couple called the council’s noise complaint hotline at about 7pm and contacted local councillors.
They also attended yesterday’s council meeting to ensure all members were aware of the issue.
“We are not afraid of standing up for ourselves in what we believe is correct,” Mrs Mitchell said.
“When you are living with continual noise, if we can have one meal a day in silence, and let me tell you silence is golden, if people stick to those guidelines you won’t hear from us.”
It should be remembered that hearing protection in construction is as important as any other because deterioration in hearing can affect a workers ability to do their job and to remain safe on site.
Hazardous noise can destroy the ability to hear clearly and make working safely more difficult but it can also harm workers irreparably. In addition to being a nuisance to neighbours, noise can be problematic to safety on site which is why it needs to be managed.
Hearing damage generally occurs gradually over a number of years and is often irreversible which is why the proper control measures need to implemented to deal with the hazard.
By implementing control measures to control risks associated with noise, businesses can protect workers from hearing loss, improve conditions for communication and promote a less stressful and more productive site. Workers exposed to noise for shifts longer than 10 hours are at a greater risk of suffering hearing damage than workers exposed for 8 hours – this knowledge can help employers better protect their workers by altering shifts accordingly so that no worker is excessively exposed to noise hazards. It is also important that employers do not operate past their regular working hours even if they are behind schedule.
According to WH&S Regulations employers must ensure that safe work practices are implemented and maintained if your workers are at risk of being exposed to great noise levels. That involves developing a noise management plan in cooperation with workers.