Coronavirus Update - NOVA Acoustics Ltd remains open for business during this uncertain time following the COVID-19 outbreak.  All Government advice and recommendations are being followed by our staff and site engineers.  

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Noise At Work Assessments

We have many years of experience in providing occupational noise monitoring services to enable compliance with the Control of Noise at Work Regulations 2005.

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Workplace Noise Surveys

We provide robust noise at work risk assessments to ensure your company complies with H...

Employee Hearing Tests

We provide onsite hearing screening & audiometric testing. This enables you to ensu...

Occupational Noise at Work Services 

At Nova Acoustics Ltd, we provide nationwide advice and assessment of noise at work. Our team of experienced acoustic consultants are here to offer you the support and guidance you need to ensure your workplace is doing all it can to minimise the risk from noise. Call us today to discuss your needs. Occupational noise is a major issue in industry and occupational noise monitoring is required to ensure that employees hearing is protected from elevated noise at their place of work. 

Within the UK, all employers have an obligation to protect their employees. Employers are required to undertake an assessment of risks to its employees health and safety from noise exposure within the workplace.  The preferred method of assessing this risk is by undertaking a workplace noise monitoring survey.  This noise at work risk assessment will allow the company to formulate an action plan to reduce employees exposure to noise, as required by the regulations.  The regulations require appropriate assessment and analysis of noise within the workplace and evidence that steps have been taken to prevent and reduce exposure to noise risks. 

Get the noise levels assessed in your workplace with our Noise Risk Assessments Services.

Thousands of UK workplaces expose employees to significant yet preventable noise levels, so call us today to ensure you are compliant with your legal requirements. The Control of Noise at Work Regulations 2005 outline how employers need to prevent and manage excessive noise in the workplace, so it is important you ensure the measures you have in place are compliant.  

Our noise at work survey consultants are fully competent and recognised by the Institute of Acoustics. They will conduct a site survey to establish the noise levels your workforce is exposed to. The consultant will undertake an analysis of the noise hazards in your workplace and will establish whether the lower and upper exposure action values are being exceeded. The personal daily dose will be predicted, and measures will be identified to eliminate or reduce risk, control noise exposure and protect employees.  

You will receive a technical report analysing the results and presenting recommendations, on appropriate control measures that are to be implemented, including hearing protection, hearing protection zones and health surveillance. The report will plainly and simply outline the employer’s duties and how to comply with the Control of Noise at Work Regulations 2005. 

Employer Noise at Work Frequently Asked Questions

When is a Noise at Work Assessment needed?

Noise At Work Assessments must be undertaken if employees are likely to be exposed to noise at above lower noise exposure action values set out by the HSE.  The Control of Noise at Work Regulations 2005 (Noise Regulations 2005) require employers to prevent or reduce risks to health and safety from exposure to noise at work.

As a simple guide you will likely require a noise at work assessment if any of the following apply:

  • Is the noise intrusive for most of the working day? Examples could include exposure to noise from a busy street, a vacuum cleaner or a crowded restaurant.
  • Do your employees have to raise their voices to carry out a normal conversation when about 2 m apart for at least part of the day? 
  • Do your employees use noisy powered tools or machinery for more than half an hour each day? 
  • Do you work in a noisy industry? Examples can include:
  • construction
  • demolition or road repair
  • woodworking
  • plastics processing
  • engineering
  • textile manufacture
  • general fabrication
  • forging, pressing or stamping
  • paper or board making
  • canning or bottling
  • foundries
  • Is there noise due to impacts (such as hammering, drop forging, pneumatic impact tools etc), explosive sources such as cartridge operated tools or detonators, or guns?  

Noise can also be a safety hazard at work, interfering with communication and making warnings harder to hear. Some examples of typical noise levels are shown in the graphic.

What do the regulations require you to do?

The Control of Noise at Work Regulations 2005 (Noise Regulations 2005) require employers to prevent or reduce risks to health and safety from exposure to noise at work. Employees have duties under the Regulations too. The Regulations require you as an employer to:

  • Assess the risks to your employees from noise at work; 
  • Take action to reduce the noise exposure that produces those risks; 
  • Provide your employees with hearing protection if you cannot reduce the noise exposure enough by using other methods; 
  • Make sure the legal limits on noise exposure are not exceeded; 
  • Provide your employees with information, instruction and training; 
  • Carry out health surveillance where there is a risk to health. 

The Regulations do not apply to: 

  • members of the public exposed to noise from their non-work activities, or making an informed choice to go to noisy places; 
  • low-level noise that is a nuisance but causes no risk of hearing damage. 

Employers in the music and entertainment sectors have until 6 April 2008 to comply with the Noise Regulations 2005. Meanwhile they must continue to comply with the Noise at Work Regulations 1989, which the 2005 Regulations replace for all other workplaces. 

What are the action levels and limit values? 

The Noise Regulations require you to take specific action at certain action values. These relate to:

  • the levels of exposure to noise of your employees averaged over a working day or week; and 
  • the maximum noise (peak sound pressure) to which employees are exposed in a working day. 

The values are: 

  • lower exposure action values: 
  • daily or weekly exposure of 80 dB; 
  • peak sound pressure of 135 dB;
  • upper exposure action values: 
  • daily or weekly exposure of 85 dB; 
  • peak sound pressure of 137 dB. 


What are the health effects of noise at work?

Noise at work can cause hearing loss that can be temporary or permanent. People often experience temporary deafness after leaving a noisy place. Although hearing recovers within a few hours, this should not be ignored. It is a sign that if you continue to be exposed to the noise your hearing could be permanently damaged. Permanent hearing damage can be caused immediately by sudden, extremely loud, explosive noises, eg from guns or cartridge-operated machines. 

But hearing loss is usually gradual because of prolonged exposure to noise. It may only be when damage caused by noise over the years combines with hearing loss due to ageing that people realise how deaf they have become. This may mean their family complains about the television being too loud, they cannot keep up with conversations in a group, or they have trouble using the telephone. Eventually everything becomes muffled and people find it difficult to catch sounds like 't', 'd' and 's', so they confuse similar words. 

Hearing loss is not the only problem. People may develop tinnitus (ringing, whistling, buzzing or humming in the ears), a distressing condition which can lead to disturbed sleep.   

Remember: Young people can be damaged as easily as the old. 

How Do I Get Started?

If you answered 'yes' to any of the questions in the section 'Do you have a noise problem?', you will need to assess the risks to decide whether any further action is needed, and plan how you will do it. 

The aim of the risk assessment is to help you decide what you need to do to ensure the health and safety of your employees who are exposed to noise. It is more than just taking measurements of noise - sometimes measurements may not even be necessary.   

Your risk assessment should: 

  • Identify where there may be a risk from noise and who is likely to be affected;  • Contain a reliable estimate of your employees' exposures, and compare the exposure with the exposure action values and limit values;  • Identify what you need to do to comply with the law, eg whether noise-control measures or hearing protection are needed, and, if so, where and what type; and  • Identify any employees who need to be provided with health surveillance and whether any are at particular risk.   

How Do I Control the Risk from Noise?

The purpose of the Noise Regulations 2005 is to make sure that people do not suffer damage to their hearing - so controlling noise risks and noise exposure should be where you concentrate your efforts.  Wherever there is noise at work you should be looking for alternative processes, equipment and/or working methods which would make the work quieter or mean people are exposed for shorter times. You should also be keeping up with what is good practice or the standard for noise control within your industry. 

Where there are reasonably practicable things you can do to reduce risks from noise, that are reasonably practicable, they should be done. However, where noise exposures are below the lower exposure action values, risks are low and so you would only be expected to take actions that are relatively inexpensive and simple to carry out. 

Where your workplace noise assessment shows that your employees are likely to be exposed at or above the upper exposure action values, you must put in place a planned programme of noise control.  How do I use the information from my risk assessment?  Your risk assessment will have produced information on the risks and an action plan for controlling noise. Use this information to: 

Tackle the immediate risk, eg by providing hearing protection.  • Identify what is possible to control noise, how much reduction could be achieved and what is reasonably practicable.  • Establish priorities for action and a timetable (eg, consider where there could be immediate benefits, what changes may need to be phased in over a longer period of time and the number of people exposed to the noise in each case).  • Assign responsibilities to people to deliver the various parts of the plan.  • Ensure the work on noise control is carried out.  • Check that what you have done has worked.  • See also 'Protect your employees' box on the flow chart  • How you could reduce the noise   

How Do I Reduce Noise?

There are many ways of reducing noise and noise exposure - often a combination of methods works best. First think about how to remove the loud noise altogether. If that is not possible, do all you can to control the noise at source, consider redesigning the workplace and reorganising working patterns. Take measures to protect individual workers if you need to. Consider the following: 

  • Use a different, quieter process or quieter equipment, eg:  o Can you do the work in some other quieter way?  o Can you replace whatever is causing the noise with something that is less noisy?  o Introduce a low-noise purchasing policy for machinery and equipment. 
  • Introduce engineering controls:  o Avoid metal-on-metal impacts, eg line chutes with abrasion-resistant rubber, and reduce drop heights.  o Vibrating machine panels can be a source of noise - add material to reduce vibration ('damping').  o Isolate vibrating machinery or components from their surroundings, eg with antivibration mounts or flexible couplings.  o Fit silencers to air exhausts and blowing nozzles. 
  • Modify the paths by which the noise travels through the air to the people exposed, eg:  o Erect enclosures around machines to reduce the amount of noise emitted into the workplace or environment.  o Use barriers and screens to block the direct path of sound.  o Position noise sources further away from workers. 
  • Design and lay out the workplace for low noise emission, eg:  o Use absorptive materials within the building to reduce reflected sound, eg open cell foam or mineral wool.  o Keep noisy machinery and processes away from quieter areas.  o Design the workflow to keep noisy machinery out of areas where people spend most of their time. 
  • Limit the time spent in noisy areas - every halving of the time spent in a noisy area will reduce noise exposure by 3 dB.  Proper and regular maintenance of machinery and equipment is essential as it will deteriorate with age and can become noisier. Listen out for changes in noise levels - it may be time to replace worn or faulty parts.   

Clients we’ve worked with

  • barnfield
  • bedford
  • barnfield
  • continental
  • essex
  • hobson
  • interserve
  • kfc
  • leicester
  • persimmon
  • puregym
  • snap
  • starbucks
  • tacobell
  • tower hamlets
  • ITV
  • Unilever
  • Sig
  • Leeds University
  • Morrisons
  • Taylor Wimpey
  • City of Stoke On Trent
  • Hambleton District
  • Calvert Trust
  • Aldi
  • Arnold Laver
  • Broadley
  • Engie
  • Gardiner Theo
  • Iggesund
  • Oxford University
  • PepsiCo
  • Richmonshire
  • Savills

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Service Map - NOVA Acoustics

Accreditations & Memberships

  • Builders Profile
  •  Institute Of Acoustics
  • SSIP
  • Construction Line
  • LABC
  • IEMA
  • HAS

testimonials

- Paul Hastings

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

I engaged Nova at the outset of my project (which I recommend you do) to assist with providing a detailed material specification and installation guidance. There was always someone available to help with practical enquiries and advice...

- C.G. Henry

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

I had Adam come round to a property which i thought was beyond repair. He gave sound advice with exact details of what needed to be carried out in the most cost effective manner. Once the works were carried out he returned, tested it...

- Andrew Youngson

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

I have worked with the team at nova on a number of projects and have always been very helpful and competitively priced. Highly recommend this company for any sound test and report.

- Carol Chaplin

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Excellent service, engineer was very informative and helpful.  Good customer service being able to speak to knowledgeable people on the telephone when making inquires about the procedure involved for the sound testing of our property...

- Bun Bar

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Good efficient service. Recommend it to all.

Bright Construction UK Ltd

- Gavin Boby

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Very attentive and friendly service, keen to serve the client, and absolutely not about dragging the case out for fees - will work to save the client fees, and understand the practicalities of the case and the opposition that applications...

- Ejaz Shah

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Adam was very attentive and very professional answered all my questions and returned all calls the engineer arrived at the time agreed and again explained everything before carrying out the test , and we received our report within couple...

- Charles OKell

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Its a tricky area and you need the right support, Paul Robinson  brought Adam's team to the table and we'll be working together again in future for sure.

- Ainsley Black

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Although we had followed the building reg, in terms of sound insulation the property conversion still failed the sound Test. Adam was very helpful and professional and guided us to the point that when it was retested again we passed. Would...

- Robert Buchanan

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Friendly efficient and cost effective service, without complication

- Hepple Property Care Ltd

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Very quick service, would recommend to others

- Ian Fairbairn

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Excellent service and communication with all the members of staff we had dealings with.  A very professional approach and attitude by all.  An experience that is refreshing within the building sector and a company I could recommend...

- Daniel Cogdon

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Fast turn around and great service, recommended

- Allan Proctor

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Excellent service by Adam and the team at Nova. The service they delivered was efficient, competitive and I would highly recommend them!

- Carol Richards

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Having selected Nova Accoustics to perform a sound test on my latest project, I found the whole process completely professional, prompt & efficient .

The phone contact to set up the appointment was extremely  helpful...

- Michael Dickinson

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Having used Nova Acoustics on several projects, I would not hesitate in recommending this company.

- Steph Openshaw

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Fantastic service very quick and punctual highly recommended.

- Chris Bullerwell

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Used Nova Acoustics to sound test a property we'd converted in the Newcastle area.

Excellent service from start to finish. Professional, helpful & reliable throughout...highly recommended.

- Andrew Holmes

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Really helpful team of people and very quick service, which was greatly appreciated.

- Siying Lid

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

We are a small design firm and NOVA Acoustics provided very sufficient services to our clients with reasonable price. And they are quick to respond too.  Highly recommended.

- Floors By Design Leicester

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Very good company, communicated all the way through.  Competitive pricing, I will be using them again in the near future.

- Stewart Greenhalgh

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

First Class, prompt professional service. I will recommend to other clients.

- Frank Kenny

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Excellent  service so far and will be contacting them again for their services.

- Kelly Freakley

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Fantastic service from this company at a very reasonable price, would definitely recomend....

- Robert Myers

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

I used Nova acoustics to sound test my basement flat conversion for the building control certificate

And found them to be professional and friendly. The test was done mid afternoon and I had received by six o'clock the same...

- Stephen Shaw

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Excellent service. Would recommend to anyone needing assistance with matters arising from acoustics and noise.

- Rick Parsons

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

iKoustic have worked with Nova Acoustics for some time now and they are constantly thorough, professional and super helpful in everything they do ... They are certainly our partner of choice ... Rick

- Carl Smoult

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Prompt, friendly, efficient, professional... would recommend and use again.

- Gary Oliver

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

As most of you reading this message are now probably aware  the difficulty of finding guidance and compliance of the part E building regulations is an arduous task. Well search no more! Adam at Nova Acoustics not only talked me through...

- Kate Whitehead

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Speedy quote, arranging the testing & report! Seb was really friendly & efficient onsite. Highly recommend!

- David Hope

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Came promptly at the requested time. Did the work professionally and in good time and provided the required reports so no issues or problems to report.

- Mark Girdham

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

NOVA provided a fast and efficient service. They came to carry out the sound tests on my 8 Bed HMO, which was a change of use from 4 flats. Very friendly and professional service. Mark (Hull)

- Simon Phillips

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Excellent company, providing a professional service at a competitive price and a quick, hassle free  experience. I would recommend them to anyone.

Simon Phillips  Salisbury Poultry Ltd

- Peter Phillips

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Excellent service from start to finish.

Highly professional team who where very accommodating to the team on site and worked exceptional well with everyone.

Having worked with other companies within the same...

- Claire Gannon

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Excellent speedy service, Luigi was very proficient and professional at carrying out his job, a real asset to the company. Thank you Luigi. Kind Regards, Ant Mason