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 https://www.osha.gov.

April 17, 1991

Mr. George R. Cook, Jr., CCC-A
Occupational Audiologist
Health & Hygiene, Inc.
420 Gallimore Dairy Road
Greensboro, North Carolina 27409

Dear Mr. Cook:

This is in response to your letter of April 5, concerning retesting when the annual audiograms show that employees have suffered a Standard Threshold Shift (STS).

According to 29 CFR 1910.95(g)(7)(ii), "If the annual audiogram shows that an employee has suffered a Standard Threshold Shift, the employer may obtain a retest within 30 days and consider the result of the retest as the annual audiogram." You requested an interpretation of this provision.

The provision establishes that in order to consider the result of a retest as the annual audiogram, the retesting must be performed within 30 calendar days of the original test.

Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act, States are encouraged to assume responsibility for their own occupational safety and health programs under a plan approved and closely monitored by Federal OSHA. The North Carolina Department of Labor has operated such a plan since 1973 and is responsible for the enforcement of occupational safety and health standards in the State.

As a condition of plan approval, States are required to adopt and enforce standards that are either identical to or "at least as effective" as the Federal standards, as well as interpretations. For information regarding the requirements of North Carolina standards, you should contact North Carolina directly at the following address::

Mr. John C. Brooks
North Carolina Department of Labor
4 West Edenton Street
Raleigh, North Carolina 27603

Telephone: (919) 733-7166


Patricia K. Clark, Director
Directorate of Compliance Programs