Journal of Environment Pollution and Human Health
ISSN (Print): 2334-3397 ISSN (Online): 2334-3494 Website: Editor-in-chief: Dibyendu Banerjee
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Journal of Environment Pollution and Human Health. 2020, 8(2), 79-87
DOI: 10.12691/jephh-8-2-5
Open AccessArticle

Noise-induced Hearing Loss in Workshops and Laboratories in Kenyan Universities

Daniel Omondi Onyango1, , Robert Kinyua2, Abel Nyakundi Mayaka3 and Christopher Kanali4

1Institute of Energy and Environmental Technology, Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology, Nairobi, Kenya

2Physics Department, Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology, Nairobi, Kenya

3Faculty of Engineering and Technology, Multimedia University of Kenya, Nairobi, Kenya

4Agriculture and Biosystems Engineering Department, Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology, Nairobi, Kenya

Pub. Date: July 07, 2020

Cite this paper:
Daniel Omondi Onyango, Robert Kinyua, Abel Nyakundi Mayaka and Christopher Kanali. Noise-induced Hearing Loss in Workshops and Laboratories in Kenyan Universities. Journal of Environment Pollution and Human Health. 2020; 8(2):79-87. doi: 10.12691/jephh-8-2-5


Noise-induced hearing loss in workplaces is a challenge, which may lead to accidents and interference with communication. In order to protect workers and students exposed in engineering workshops and laboratories, it is important to determine the magnitude and understand causative factors to adequately address the problem. The present study aimed at identifying predisposing factors that lead to noise-induced hearing loss in public universities in Kenya. The study was conducted in 10 technical universities, identified through purposive non-probability quarter sampling from a population of 49. Noise profiling was used to identify and characterize sources and types. An integrating sound level meter was used to record the noise levels for the different clusters and results compared with statutory requirements. Existing controls for noise pollution were also assessed. The results show that a large proportion (84.1%) of the noise types identified was continuous. The continuous noise emanated mainly from hand grinding (18%) and internal combustions engines (25%) with resultant values being above the statutory upper action limit of 85 dBA. The sources of impulsive noise were mainly intermittent actions of electric-powered (47.6%) and manually-operated (52.4%) tools. Impulsive noise levels were found to be below the maximum permissible exposure limit of 140 dBA. Although one of the universities had a safety and health committee and a risk management department, hearing protection was not used by those exposed. Noise-induced hearing loss in workshops and laboratories in public universities in Kenya is likely to occur from continuous noise exposure since there are inadequate control measures taken.

noise-induced hearing loss causative factors Kenya universities

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