• Publication Date:
  • Publication Type:
  • Fed Register #:
  • Title:
    Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request; Occupational Noise Exposure
[Federal Register Volume 86, Number 199 (Tuesday, October 19, 2021)]
[Pages 57860-57861]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2021-22744]



Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission for OMB 
Review; Comment Request; Occupational Noise Exposure

ACTION: Notice of availability; request for comments.


SUMMARY: The Department of Labor (DOL) is submitting this Mine Safety 
and Health Administration (MSHA)-sponsored information collection 
request (ICR) to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review 
and approval in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 
(PRA). Public comments on the ICR are invited.

DATES: The OMB will consider all written comments that agency receives 
on or before November 18, 2021.

ADDRESSES: Written comments and recommendations for the proposed 
information collection should be sent within 30 days of publication of 
this notice to www.reginfo.gov/public/do/PRAMain. Find this particular 
information collection by selecting ``Currently under 30-day Review--
Open for Public Comments'' or by using the search function.
    Comments are invited on: (1) Whether the collection of information 
is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the 
Department, including whether the information will have practical 
utility; (2) if the information will be processed and used in a timely 
manner; (3) the accuracy of the agency's estimates of the burden and 
cost of the collection of information, including the validity of the 
methodology and assumptions used; (4) ways to enhance the quality, 
utility and clarity of the information collection; and (5) ways to 
minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are 
to respond, including the use of automated collection techniques or 
other forms of information technology.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Crystal Rennie by telephone at 202-
693-0456 or by email at DOL_PRA_PUBLIC@dol.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Noise is a harmful physical agent and one of 
the most pervasive health hazards in mining. Repeated exposure to high 
levels of sound over time causes occupational noise-induced hearing 
loss (NIHL). NIHL is a serious, often profound physical impairment for 
miners, with far-reaching psychological and social effects. NIHL can be 
distinguished from aging and other factors that can contribute to 
hearing loss and it can be prevented. According to the National 
Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), NIHL is among the 
``top ten'' leading occupational illnesses and injuries.
    For many years, NIHL was regarded as an inevitable consequence of 
working in a mine. Mining, an intensely mechanized industry, relies on 
drills, crushers, compressors, conveyors, trucks, loaders, and other 
heavy-duty equipment for the excavation, haulage, and processing of 
material. This equipment creates high sound levels, exposing machine 
operators as well as miners working nearby to occupational noise that 
can contribute to hearing loss. MSHA, the Occupational Safety and 
Health Administration, the military, and other organizations around the 
world have established and enforced standards to reduce the loss of 
hearing. Quieter equipment, isolation of workers from noise sources, 
and limiting the time workers are exposed to noise are among the many 
well-accepted methods that will prevent NIHL.
    Records of miners' exposures to noise are necessary so that mine 
operators and MSHA can evaluate the need for and effectiveness of 
engineering controls, administrative controls, and personal protective 
equipment to protect miners from harmful levels of noise that can 
result in hearing loss. However, the Agency believes that extensive 
records for this purpose are not needed. Instead, the requirements are 
a performance-oriented approach to monitoring. Records of miners' 
hearing examinations enable mine operators and MSHA to ensure that the 
controls are effective in preventing NIHL for individual miners. 
Records of training are needed to confirm that miners receive the 
information they need to become active participants in hearing 
conservation efforts. For additional substantive information about this 
ICR, see the related notice published in the Federal Register on May 
10, 2021 (86 FR 24897).
    This information collection is subject to the PRA. A Federal agency 
generally cannot conduct or sponsor a collection of information, and 
the public is generally not required to respond to an information 
collection, unless the OMB approves it and displays a currently valid 
OMB Control Number. In addition, notwithstanding any other provisions 
of law, no person shall generally be subject to penalty for failing to 
comply with a collection of information that does not display a valid 
OMB Control Number. See 5 CFR 1320.5(a) and 1320.6.
    DOL seeks PRA authorization for this information collection for 
three (3)

years. OMB authorization for an ICR cannot be for more than three (3) 
years without renewal. The DOL notes that information collection 
requirements submitted to the OMB for existing ICRs receive a month-to-
month extension while they undergo review.
    Agency: DOL-MSHA.
    Title of Collection: Occupational Noise Exposure.
    OMB Control Number: 1219-0147.
    Affected Public: Private Sector: Businesses or other for-profits.
    Total Estimated Number of Respondents: 12,929.
    Total Estimated Number of Responses: 190,001.
    Total Estimated Annual Time Burden: 14,153 hours.
    Total Estimated Annual Other Costs Burden: $30,585.

(Authority: 44 U.S.C. 3507(a)(1)(D)).

Crystal Rennie,
Senior PRA Analyst.
[FR Doc. 2021-22744 Filed 10-18-21; 8:45 am]