Control of noise at work regulations 2005

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Understanding Noise Regulations in the Workplace

The Control of Noise at Work Regulations 2005 sets forth guidelines for managing noise levels at work to protect employees from hearing damage.

Key Aspects of Noise Regulations

The regulations specify:

  • Employee Noise Exposure Levels: The average exposure over a day or week and the maximum noise level experienced.
  • Exposure Limit Values: The maximum allowable exposure levels to ensure employee safety.

Lower Exposure Action Values

Defined as daily or weekly exposure of 80 decibels and a peak of 135 decibels, with recommendations for:

  • Assessing and implementing simple measures to reduce noise exposure.

Upper Exposure Action Values

At daily or weekly exposure of 85 decibels and a peak of 137 decibels, employers are required to:

  • Initiate a comprehensive noise reduction programme.

Exposure Limit Values

Employers must ensure exposure does not exceed daily or weekly 87 decibels and a peak of 140 decibels.

Employer Responsibilities

A detailed risk assessment is crucial, including:

  • Identifying at-risk employees and evaluating their noise exposure.
  • Implementing necessary noise-control measures or personal hearing protection.
  • Identifying employees in need of health surveillance.

Compliance and Risk Assessment

Document and regularly review risk assessments to stay compliant and ensure ongoing workplace safety.


Compliance with the Control of Noise at Work Regulations 2005 is vital for maintaining a healthy work environment and safeguarding employees' hearing health.