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Effects of engine noise on maritime workers

On Behalf of | Dec 14, 2022 | Admiralty And Maritime Law, Blog

As a maritime worker, you face exposure to some particular risks that could adversely affect your health. One of these is the noise from the engine of the ship.

As you might expect, exposure to engine noise puts you at risk of hearing loss. However, there are other ways that the noise can affect you.

How loud is the engine of a ship?

The noise level of the engine depends on how hard it is working. According to Boating Magazine, an idling engine may measure 60 decibels, about the level of a casual conversation between you and a co-worker and not enough to damage hearing. However, when the engine is going nearly full throttle, the noise can get up to 100 decibels or more, about the same level as a jet traveling at 100 feet.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, determining the risk to your hearing depends on both the noise level and the duration of the exposure. Exposure to 85 decibels becomes harmful after at least eight hours, but exposure to noise 95 decibels or above can put your hearing at risk after only one hour.

What other effects can noise exposure have on your health?

Exposure to loud noises and vibrations can cause you to have stress, both physical and mental. Prolonged stress of either type can contribute to chronic health conditions such as cardiovascular disease.

You may be able to protect yourself from the effects of noise exposure by wearing ear protection to reduce exposure and having frequent screenings for chronic illnesses.