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  • Publication
    Is personal discomfort a main factor in driving employees’ wearing of hearing protectors in a mine setting?
    Introduction: Continuous exposure to noise can have both physiological and psychological effects on workers. Where a worker is exposed to excessive noise, hearing protectors should be worn. Company policy and personal comfort were the main factors identified in the adherence to wearing hearing protectors. The objective was to answer if there is an association between personal comfort and wearing of hearing protectors if the company has already set up a health and safety policy. Material and Methods: The study employed a cross section research survey questionnaire. The target population involved was 107 workers in a heavy manufacturing and mine facility. Binary regression and descriptive analysis were conducted on the data collected. Results: The majority of the study population agree personal discomfort is a factor using hearing protectors in the workplace, 36.2% agree ears hurt when wearing, 49.1% feel uncomfortable when wearing especially in warm weather, and 27.6% feel itching when wearing. The adherence to wearing hearing protectors was not affected by years of employment or duration worn throughout the day. There is no significant association between reporting ears hurt while using hearing protectors and age or roles of workers. Workers are aware of sections of the company policy. Conclusions: Although the company has a strong safety policy, personal discomfort is a factor in wearing hearing protectors within the company. To influence the wearing of hearing protectors a company should give employees the option to select the type of hearing protector and provide more choices.