OSHA requirements are set by statute, standards and regulations. Our interpretation letters explain these requirements and how they apply to particular circumstances, but they cannot create additional employer obligations. This letter constitutes OSHA's interpretation of the requirements discussed. Note that our enforcement guidance may be affected by changes to OSHA rules. Also, from time to time we update our guidance in response to new information. To keep apprised of such developments, you can consult OSHA's website at http://www.osha.gov.

June 16, 1986

Bruce A. Sanderson
P.O. Box 1166
Bonita, California 92002

Dear Mr. Sanderson:

This is in response to your inquiry of May 22, to the Health Standards Directorate of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regarding hearing loss, noise, and civil service exams for audiologists.

Enclosed for your information are the OSHA 29 CFR 1910.95 occupational noise exposure standard and its March 8, 1983, hearing conservation amendment. The amendment replaces paragraph (b)(3) of the standard with paragraphs (c) through (g) and Appendices A through I. These begin on page 9776 of the enclosed Federal Register notice. As you can see, OSHA makes no distinction about occupational noise exposures in unusual environments such as those with undue atmospheric pressure. All environments are included in the OSHA occupational noise standard.

Furthermore, we are not aware of any special civil service exams for audiologists. If your concern lies in the area of certification or licensing for audiometric technicians, please refer to paragraph 1910.85(g)(3) of the hearing conservation amendment. This is found on page 9777 of the enclosed notice.

Please contact this office if further information is required.


Richard D. Edsell
Office of Science and Technology Assessment