A major government employer has been found liable for a worker's psychological injury, after its "messenger" wrongly told him he had been suspended. It was deemed not liable for the man's tinnitus, purportedly caused by the noise of workplace air conditioners.
With noise-induced hearing loss remaining one of the most prevalent occupational diseases, despite regulatory thresholds, researchers have examined the benefits of personal in-ear monitors, and found they appear to improve the use of PPE and drive the implementation of engineering controls.
Employers with "noisy" workplaces have been urged to ensure mandatory hearing tests are carried out by authorised testers, given the provision of inaccurate data can have serious ramifications for businesses and their employees.
In upholding a worker's noise-induced hearing loss claim, a tribunal has found claimants bear the onus of proving the relevant employment involved excessive noise exposure, before the evidentiary onus shifts to the respondent to show otherwise.
Australia's first WHS Code of Practice for managing psychological risks, released for comment in NSW, advises duty holders to apply the hierarchy of controls and eliminate the risks by redesigning work processes.