08 Jul 2021

The Customer Portal

About the Portal

We have developed an impression database portal for all of our customers; this allows users to track when employees have had impressions through a traffic light system, to identify when ear plugs need renewing. Customers have full access to the portal, so they can make necessary changes to employee records.

Why does the product have a 5 year lifespan?

After 5 years you would’ve thought the product would be worn and need replacing? But no, the product is very durable and can often last longer than 5 years with good care.

Your ears change over time, much like Dumbo the flying elephant and therefore 5 years is a sufficient timeframe for when the ear plugs need renewing.

How do I get on the portal?

You can contact our Sales Manager Glen Perkins on 01507 604322 or email glen.perkins@protecthear.co.uk, who will be more than happy to set you up on the system.

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01 Jun 2021

A Free Trial offer you can’t miss out on…

A Free Trial offer you can’t miss out on…

About us

ProtectHear is the leading provider of custom ear plugs with outstanding service and a product that is not only comfortable to wear, but also provides the ability to hear conversations and warnings.  The ear plugs are capable of connecting to radios, to enable full communications through our system called SpeakHear. We are so confident our product is the hearing protection you need in your workplace; we are offering a FREE trial.

tinnitusTry before you buy

Companies have the chance to trial up to 10 employees with our custom ear plugs. A toolbox talk is given to employees before the trial commences, showing how to fit, remove and clean the ear plugs.

There is 8 weeks of contact from us during the trial. After an 8 week period if the company wishes to move forward the products on trial are invoiced, and if not then they are returned with no costs incurred. We are confident that the product and service will exceed expectations as the trials have a 95% success rate.

Can I trial SpeakHear?

Yes, SpeakHear is connectable to ProtectHear ear plugs and there are many options to trial. There is a range of communication accessories offered, so trials can be conducted of different types of radios to find the appropriate one for your company. With SpeakHear there are many popular radios that can be connected with brands such as Motorola, Kenwood and Hytera to name a few.

How do I book a trial?

You can contact us on 01507 604322 or via email enquiries@protecthear.co.uk. We are operating in the safest way possible under strict COVID measures.

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23 Mar 2021

Safe Visits

Hairdressers re-opening

On the Prime Ministers road map Hairdressers are planned to re-open around the 12th April, with the same rules that were previously in place for the PPE worn whilst working. The way hairdressers conduct their work is very similar to us, working within 2 metres and one to one with the client.

Ear impressions

When taking ear impressions it is a safe procedure, coming into one to one contact for only 5 minutes. Our custom ear plugs are essential PPE for users in noisy environments, hairdressing is also essential especially as I look at my colleagues’ hair at the moment!

ProtectHear are able to conduct visits as safely as possible using essential PPE such as face masks and visors, whilst also making sure hands are sanitised between impressions taken, with revised safety practices to keep your employees and ours safe:

How can I find out more?

You can contact us either by phone on 01507 604322 or email Kieran.towse@protecthear.co.uk to find out more about the site procedures.

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10 Sep 2020

Reduce landfill, ditch disposables…

Disposable ear plugs

Using disposable ear plugs can protect employees from noisy areas and also gives them the ability to wear disposables with other PPE equipment. But employees use a number of these every day whether it is to take them out at lunch or replacing them when they fall out. Companies use thousands of disposables to protect their employees, but there is a better type of product…

Custom ear plugs

ProtectHear® custom ear plugs provide great protection to employees whilst working and also allow users to hear conversations when communicating with colleagues, on lunch or moving to a quiet work area momentarily, without the need to remove them, due to their unique filter system. ProtectHear® custom ear plugs are a reusable product which has a lifespan of 5 years. In this time thousands of disposables could be used by a single person.

Why is reducing landfill important?

Decreasing waste can also protect valuable resources by reducing the need for replacement items. Landfills are a source of air and water pollution and waste reduction can also reduce energy production and costs. During the Coronavirus pandemic landfill through PPE has increased significantly, meaning it is more important than ever to reduce waste. This is one of the ways ProtectHear® custom ear plugs really make a difference, through reducing landfill over their 5 year lifetime. There are other benefits to ProtectHear® custom ear plugs.

Cost savings

Being environmentally friendly can also offer financial savings, compare the cost for 1 pair of ProtectHear® custom ear plugs to thousands of disposables. On average a company will gain a payback on ProtectHear® custom ear plugs within 2 years.

Comfort

If the cost savings aren’t enough to convince you then the quality of ProtectHear® custom ear plugs should, the ear plugs are the softest silicone custom ear plugs on the market, offering users outstanding comfort levels.

Communications

ProtectHear® custom ear plugs can be connected to SpeakHear® products which are hard wired to a radio from the ear plugs. There is a 12 month warranty on SpeakHear® accessories and the SpeakHear® system is connectable to most radio brands including Motorola, Kenwood, Hytera etc.

Contact us

We are so confident that the product will suit a company’s needs that a ‘Try Before you Buy’ for up to 10 people, is offered to all businesses.  SpeakHear® communication accessories are also offered on the trial. If you have any queries please do contact us on 01507 604322.

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19 Nov 2019

Nine reasons why your hearing protection efforts could be failing

Employer-led hearing conservation achieves the best results

When it comes to industrial hearing protection, the well-known proverb: “You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink” springs to mind.

In short you can provide your workforce with the best hearing protection money can buy, but you can’t simply expect your employees to use it unless, as their employer, you lead the way. 

Some workers will continually put their own hearing at risk by either incorrectly using the hearing protection equipment you have provided, or not wearing it at all, and here’s why:

1.      Lack of employee engagement

Your workers may not fully understand the long term effects working in a noisy environment could potentially have on their hearing.

OK – so it’s common sense to accept if it’s noisy at work you wear ear plugs or ear muffs. But do your workers really understand the implications and what is expected of them in terms of their commitment to using and wearing the hearing protection you have provided?

Of course, to operate within the law industrial employers must carry out noise assessments. Most international regulations for noise exposure at work state that the loudest noise a person should be exposed to for an 8-hour working day is 85dB.

It’s a good idea to let your workers know that you regularly assess their workplace noise levels, and to show them how their working environment measures up in terms of the 85dB / 8 hours regulation. Make sure they know exactly what they are dealing with, what the risks to their hearing are and why you have taken the trouble to invest in excellent hearing protection equipment for them.

2.      You need to review your choice of hearing protection

There are two main categories for industrial hearing protection – ear plugs or ear muffs/defenders – and depending on your working environment as an employer you need to weigh up all the pros and cons in relation to your unique working environment.

Of course both categories offer several variations.

With ear plugs your three main options are:

⁻         Custom-moulded, re-usable ear plugs that are uniquely pre-formed to fit your workers’ ear canal precisely

⁻         Mouldable foam disposable ear plugs

⁻         Head banded foam ear plugs which are semi-inserted into canals

With ear muffs / defenders:

⁻          There is a wide range of ear muff / defender brands available

⁻          They are made of a sound-attenuating material and have soft ear cushions with a hard outer cup held together by a headband

It’s up to you as the employer to assess your workplace and consider the best options for your unique environment and for your workers. For example ear muffs are often uncomfortable in hot and humid work areas and they can interfere with the wearing of safety glasses. For workers who need to wear prescription glasses muffs may also break the seal between the ear muff and the skin resulting in decreased hearing protection, whereas ear plugs are small and portable. Custom moulded ear plugs are re-usable making them more cost effective and kinder to the environment.

It’s often beneficial to involve your workers when making this choice.

3.      Lack of adequate training

Once engaged and you have chosen appropriate hearing protection for your workforce it is imperative you provide adequate training. Your workers need to know how to use / wear their hearing protection and how to clean and take care of their ear plugs or muffs.

A tool-box talk needn’t take long but can be very effective.

4.      You’re allowing your employees to pay lip-service

It’s no good allowing your workers to pay lip-service to their hearing protection. Many workers wear ill-fitting disposable ear plugs balanced in the ear canal entrance. If they are doing this they need to know they may as well not be wearing any hearing protection at all.

Sometimes workers are tempted to replace their hearing protection with music earphones thinking they are still protected. This is not the case. Music earphones are no substitute for hearing protection and should not be worn to protect against exposure to industrial workplace noise.

Intermittent wearing is another key issue. To get the full benefit of their hearing protection your workers should wear their ear plugs or defenders 100% of the time whilst exposed to industrial noise. Removing their ear plugs or muffs even for a short time, substantially reduces protection.

Time hearing protection moved in 1 hour, with effect on hearing protection used:

Time Removed in 1 hour Maximum 25 dB Protection is reduced to (dB)
1 minute 17
5 minutes 11
10 minutes 8
30 minutes 3
60 minutes 0


     Source:  Health & Safety Executive (HSE)

When it comes to hearing protection allowing box ticking is not good enough – it won’t conserve your workers’ hearing.

5.      There is a lack of understanding around comfort

On average it can take a couple of weeks for a worker to get used to their hearing protection, but they need to know it’s well worth persevering for long term protection.  Of course having a custom-moulded ear plug inside your ear canal when you’ve never worn one before is going to feel a little different, but a two-week settling in period is nothing when it comes to conserving your hearing. As an employer it is important to make it very clear to your workers that this is the type of hearing protection you have chosen for them, because you care about protecting and conserving their hearing for the long-term and that you expect them to persevere through the comfort barrier and wear them consistently.

6.      There is a fear of over-protection

Of course your workers need to be able to protect their ears from industrial noise whilst at the same time being able to communicate effectively with their co-workers and to hear warnings and alarms. Getting the level of protection right is a key consideration for any industrial employer. There is a wide range of comms equipment available with hearing protection equipment to ensure your workers are not over or under-protected. 

7.      There is a fear of infection

Some people are fearful of putting things in or near their ears for fear of infection. You need to take steps as an employer to help your workers avoid infection.  The following should be covered in training and tool-box talks.

Cleaning re-usable custom moulded ear plugs is easy as they are made of medical grade silicon which prevents dirt sticking to them. Wearers should squeeze out and wipe off any ear wax, then simply wash their ear plugs with hand soap after washing hands, and dry with a paper towel.

Workers need to know that handling disposable ear plugs and putting them in and taking them out during the course of the working day with dirty fingers should be avoided.

Washable ear muffs should be disassembled regularly for cleaning with a mild liquid detergent in warm water and then they need to be rinsed in clear warm water ensuring the sound-attenuating material inside the ear cushions does not get wet. A soft brush should be used to remove skin, oil and dirt that can harden the ear cushions if left. Excess moisture should be squeezed from the muffs before they are placed on a clean surface to air dry.

8.      There is a lack of inspection & record keeping

Employers needs to carry out regular inspections to ensure their workers are adhering to their end of the bargain when it comes to using their hearing protection equipment. It is recommended the employer keeps track of which workers have been issued with what, in terms of hearing protection and how each employee is maintaining / cleaning their ear plugs / muffs. It is good to have a record showing the results of inspections, to show how seriously individual employees are taking their hearing conservation.

9.      You have no effective Hearing Conservation Programme in place

If you’re going to invest in quality hearing protection for your workers you need to make sure it is taken seriously by everyone.

The best hearing protection results tend to be achieved when the employer takes the lead by putting a ‘Hearing Conservation Programme’ in place that involves:

·         Carrying out adequate noise assessment of the entire working environment

·         Choosing the most appropriate hearing protection for the workplace and its workers

·         Delivering clear and effective employee training and education

·         Paying attention to hygiene and maintenance.

·         Carrying out regular inspection and record keeping
·         Communicating with employees about their hearing protection and involving them  

Contact us, we are happy to help… 

ProtectHear are the UK’s leading custom moulded ear plug specialists and their technicians are on hand Monday to Friday, during normal office hours, to help if you would like any further information about the ear plugs themselves, the comms accessories, the ProtectHear moulding process or the ‘try-before-you-buy’ trial that is currently available to new customers.

Please call ProtectHear on 01507 604322, email them at enquiries@protecthear.co.uk, or submit an online enquiry form.

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26 Jul 2019

Noise Surveys

When is a noise survey appropriate?

It is important that noise surveys are carried out to identify where in the workplace noise issues could occur and protect workers affected in those areas. It is important to assess workers movements around the workplace too. Some workers may spend long periods of their working shifts in noisy areas and noisy tools, whereas others have less or no need to go into the noise exposure zones. This means employers may need to introduce different hearing protection with different attenuation levels across the workforce, so that people are not under/over protected.

Noise levels can change over time due to additional machinery in the workplace or some type of change in work routine. As an employer it is important to ensure you keep on top of your noise assessments, it is recommend that noise surveys are carried out every 2 years.

Around 17% of adults in the UK are affected by Hearing loss which is approximately 11 million people, with 23,000 people from 2015-2018 having work-related hearing loss.

Measuring Noise

When a workplace is due a noise survey, it is recommended a trained noise assessor is appointed to come into the workplace. Initially they will determine if noise testing is necessary. Then, if it is, they would use specialist noise measuring equipment that is fit-for-this purpose. This exercise can vary dependant on the working environment. The instruments used can vary too.  For example the Assessor may use ‘dosimeter’ – a specialised sound level meter intended specifically to measure the noise exposure of a person integrated over a period of time used for personal noise exposures. This device can be worn during a work shift to determine the levels of noise during the work; this can also be positioned in the workplace where the noise levels are a concern, to record the noise levels over time.  They may also use a ‘Sound Level Meter’ (SLM). An SLM is used to measure general noise levels in areas, this device can be used for noises such as industrial tools /equipment, noise from across boundaries and humming.

What’s the law on noise levels?

When noise levels reach 80 decibels employers must consider their workers’ health and safety and provide information and training for employees. Whereas when the noise level reaches 85 decibels, it is mandatory that employers provide their workers with a suitable form of hearing protection. There are 3 types of hearing protection that can be used, disposable ear plugs, ear defenders or custom made ear plugs.

What’s the best kind of protection for a noisy workplace?

We believe custom ear plugs are the best option for most noisy workplaces across industry. For example when workers wear disposable ear plugs or ear defenders they may protect them from the loud noises, but they also block out their awareness. However, there is a fine line between over/under protecting your workers’ ears.  Custom ear plugs are the hearing protection of choice for those employers that need to block out harmful noises for their workers, whilst enabling them to hear important warnings, alarms and conversations. Custom ear plugs are made from a soft hypoallergenic silicone, providing comfort therefore making them wearable all day.   

Not only do custom ear plugs help your employees, but they also help your budgets. With a 5 year lifespan you could see a payback period of 18-24 months compared to disposables. We are so confident our custom made ear plugs won’t disappoint, that we offer a ‘Try Before you Buy’ option.  You can trial ear plugs for up to 10 people for an 8 week period, with full support from the ProtectHear® team.

Contact us, we are happy to help…

Whilst ProtectHear® do not carry out noise surveys, our team are happy to help you with advice concerning any noise survey queries you may have, to ensure your workers are receiving the correct protection. 

If you would like to book a ‘Try Before you Buy’ trial please call us on 01507 604322 during 9am-5pm office hours, email enquiries@protecthear.co.uk, or submit a ‘contact us’ form via our website.

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