Audio Lab Technicians

Industrial Audiometric Technician

We have a total of 13 WCB trained and certified technicians. The technicians are responsible for driving the Hearing Testing trucks to the job site, filling out the necessary forms, setting up noise monitors, conducting the Hearing test, and counseling the employees on the results of their test.

Once a Hearing Conservation Program is in place, the only way to ensure that the program is effective is by periodically measuring the hearing of workers.

Hearing tests are required for workers exposed to noise greater than 85 dBA for 8 hours, or its equivalent, a noise dose of 1 Pascal-squared-hour (Pa2h).

Hearing tests are vital because they identify the beginning of noise induced hearing loss long before workers notice it. As part of the test, workers are individually counseled about the results, the follow-ups required, and when repeat tests will occur. Workers are also counseled about the type of hearing protection to use.

Hearing tests must be conducted annually to effectively monitor the hearing of noise exposed workers. The hearing test, including counseling, takes approximately 15 to 20 minutes.

During a hearing test, a worker is seated in a sound deadened booth with a window and a set of earphones are placed over the ears. When the worker is ready, the Audiometric technician sends a series of tones through the earphones to one ear, and then the other. The worker signals the technician as the tones are heard. The workers' responses are recorded for each ear. Then the results are graphed on a chart called an audio gram.

The audiogram shows how loud a tone must be to be barely heard by the worker, at a number of different pitches or frequencies. In the early stages of noise induced hearing loss, the audio gram will show some hearing loss for high pitched sounds. As hearing loss advances, the audio gram shows a hearing loss for many pitches. Workers with more advanced hearing loss will notice the sounds of speech and surrounding sounds becoming muffled.

As part of the hearing test, workers are counseled about the necessity, use, maintenance, and replacement of hearing protection. Hearing testing and counseling must be performed by WCB trained and authorized technicians. Technicians must complete an intensive training course and attend periodic one day refresher classes to maintain their authorization.

Duties of Audiometric Technician