In a report that might alert the antennae of call centre employees, and cause them to make noise about the apathy of nearly two-thirds of call centers in UK, who are now in a tight spot for having done precious little to prevent hearing damage in their employees. This revelation is indeed a wake up call to the estimated 900,000 call centre employees, who are undoubtedly risking an important faculty of theirs, gravely.
Employers are legally bound by the Control of Noise at Work Regulations Act 2005 that stipulates all call centre hubs to offer protection to their workers from unhealthy noise levels at the workplace. Clearly, there is no allusion to the acoustic shock aspect; as the present laws only ensure that high decibel noise levels are not present at the work place.
Acoustic shock can occur at relatively low noise levels, much lower than the permissible noise level at the workplaces. The employers therefore should be tuned in to the damage that acoustic shocks could cause, and suitably gear up to handle such scenarios.
Ideally employers would do well to reduce the risk of acoustic shock. It would help if they conduct regular hearing checks, and have a realistic estimate about potential risks. It is imperative to institute standard testing measures for ascertaining the health of the equipments as well as establish reliable safety policies and practices.