Noise-Induced Hearing Loss (NIHL) is an across-the-board risk in all industries - including mining.
In one study, approximately 40% of noise survey samples taken for longwall occupations exceeded the Permissible Exposure Level (PEL) of 100%. Noise doses up to 786% for longwall coal mining system workers were sampled in such job classifications as shearer operator, jacksetter (shieldman), longwall foreman, and headgate (stageloader) operator(1).
Another study found that 69% of the noise exposure of sand and gravel miners at surface and nine dredge operations was over the 85 dBA REL. The same survey reported that 48% of these miners never used hearing protectors(2),