How to make noise survey report


How to make noise survey report noise survey report
Table of Contents


A noise survey report is generated following a noise study in regions where noise exposure is considered to be dangerous. A noise survey is monitoring noise levels at several points within a factory or plant, or portions of a workplace, in order to detect noise levels in different regions. Typically, a sound level meter is used for this (SLM).

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Here is a glossary of phrases that you may find useful while reading our Noise Survey Report for the first time.

Noise (dB)
Noise is defined as any perceptible, undesired sound that is measured in decibels (dB). What one person considers noise may be considered sound by another. The phrase always has a subjective component to it. As a result, objective evaluation with a proper tool is required.

Noise level
It relates to the volume of the sound.

Noise Assessment or Noise Survey

  • A measurement of the noise levels produced by a single noise source (for example, a specific machine) or a predetermined region (e.g., a workplace).
  • A measure of the amount of noise to which an employee is subjected (as can be attained via noise dosimetry)
  • An assessment of noise characteristics (eg. an octave band analysis that measures the frequency components of a noise)
  • Assists in identifying workers who require audiometric testing.

Sound Level Meter (SLM)
A device used to measure various noise characteristics.

A standard weighting of the audible frequency range of 20Hz – 20,000Hz (20kHz) intended to mimic the human ear’s reaction to noise.

Because sound levels fluctuate, the LAeq (A-weighted equivalent continuous sound level) provides the average noise level across the measuring time. It is also known as ambient noise, because it comprises all audible noise sources, both close and far.

The A-weighted noise level was surpassed for 90% of the test time, which is commonly referred to as background noise. While it would ordinarily contain the contribution from the specific noise source (i.e. the event location in question), it tends to ignore the impacts of short duration noise such as automobiles passing, dogs barking, sirens, and so on, and is generally reflective of a locality’s fundamental noise level.

The A-weighted noise level was surpassed for 10% of the measurement period, and it is a measure of the higher noise levels in the ambient noise. 

It is the greatest A-weighted noise level measured during the measurement period.

1:3 Octave Band
Sound frequency analysis in which the frequency spectrum is split into 13 bands of one octave each.

Noise with a clearly discernible tone that is a distinct, definite, or continuous note (whine, hiss, screech, hum, etc.)

A short-duration noise (usually less than one second) with a much greater noise level than the background noise level.


Part A of this paper contains a list of survey parameters. Part B of this document contains a record of noise measurements acquired for specific pieces of equipment or places. It is also critical to track the amount of time people are exposed to specific noise levels, as risk evaluation is based on overall noise exposure. A computation of daily personal noise exposure (Lep,d) is necessary; a calculator tool can assist with this. Part C describes the control measures necessary to reduce the risk of noise-related ill-health. This component of the form must be completed locally by the person in control of the workplace, with help from the noise surveyor and/or H&SS as needed. Part D of this document contains a record of the action plan for implementing the appropriate controls identified during the risk assessment. These restrictions must be brought to the notice of everyone who is subjected to noise from the surveyed equipment. Further information on risk assessment and compliance with The Control of Noise at Work Regulations 2005 is available in the HSE paper L108: “Controlling Noise at Work: The Control of Noise at Work Regulations 2005.” Regulation Guidance”; The noise risk assessment must be brought to the attention of those who need to see it, and it must be reviewed whenever there is a change in the level of noise (e.g., due to equipment changing or requiring maintenance), the use of new equipment that has been introduced, where exposure time has increased, and so on.

Part A  –  Survey parameters



Risk Assessment reference:

Date and time of survey


Survey carried out by


Other persons present


Reason for survey


Equipment used


Test run time


Date of calibration


All dimensions are measured at an appropriate head height and in the position where an operator would normally stand.

Part B- Noise survey and exposure



Noise survey data


Ref No

Location/Item of Equipment

Noise level (LAeq)*

L CPeak*



(Plus, noise type if applicable)


(Continuous, transient, impulsive)

Exposure time

Exposure Points

See HSE calculator

Equivalent Lep,d for this location

/item of equipment













Cumulative Lep,d for exposure to multiple noise sources




  • LAeq and LCpeak measurements are necessary to assist determine the level of risk and the appropriate management measures.
  • LCeq is not necessary for risk assessment. However, if hearing protection is one of the risk-adjusted control methods indicated, LCeq will be required to establish if the chosen protection is adequate, using the formula L’A = LCeq – SNR + 4
  • (L’A is the actual level of sound at the ear while hearing protection is worn and should be between 70dB and 80dB; SNR is the manufacturer’s Single Number Rating)
  • The noise type (High, Medium, or Low frequency) is only required for noise with a peak pressure (LCpeak) more than 135dB(C); this is also necessary to determine whether hearing protection is required.

Part C – Control measures


Control measures




Is hearing protection mandatory – e.g., hearing protection zones must be marked?



Is hearing protection recommended?



Can the noise source be eliminated?



Is additional maintenance required to reduce noise levels e.g., by lubrication, tightening, cleaning etc. of equipment?

(Reassess noise level after maintenance work is complete)



Can the equipment be modified to reduce noise at source, e.g., damping, silencers, baffles etc. fitted?



Can inherently quieter components be selected e.g., slotted circular saw blades on woodworking equipment or quieter fans?

(Reassess after replacement)



Can the equipment be Isolated i.e., removed to another location away from people at work?



Can the equipment be enclosed?



Is a noise refuge area needed?



Can absorptive material be used to deaden noise in the workspace?



Do staff need training or information on the noise risks?



Is health surveillance required? (For all with Lep,d in excess of 85 dB)


Explanatory Notes:

Lower Exposure Action Value – 80dB (A) (personal exposure averaged over a day) or 135dB(C) Peak sound pressure

Upper Exposure Action Value (A) – 85dB (A) (personal exposure averaged over a day) or 137dB (C) Peak Sound Pressure).

Hearing Protection Zones – Any place where noise levels above the Upper Exposure Action Value must be classified as a ‘Hearing Protection Zone’ and labelled accordingly. Hearing protection will be required in certain regions, even if exposure is just for a brief length of time.

Hearing protection is essential. Hearing protection can be employed as an extra measure after noise has been decreased as much as is practically possible through other measures, or as a stopgap measure while noise reduction is being implemented. If personal noise exposures surpass the upper action value, it should not be utilised as the only way of protection (85dB).

The hearing protection offered must be appropriate for the amounts and types of noise to which persons are subjected. If the noise level exceeds the lower action value, hearing protection should be made available upon request (80dB)

Health Surveillance – Those who are exposed to a Lep,d of 85dBA or more must be monitored for their health. It should also be offered for people who are known to be susceptible to noise-related illnesses and are exposed at a Lep,d of 80dBA.

Part D- Action Plan


Action required

Who by

Due date

Action completed


Risk assessor:





Job title & School / Dept?




Review date



Notes: Exposure calculators and ready-reckoners 

Noise exposure calculators can assist us in calculating our daily and weekly noise exposures, as well as estimating the effectiveness of hearing protection.

The HSE online pages provide links that allow us to determine daily, weekly, and lifetime exposure, as well as hearing protection calculators.

The noise exposure ready-reckoners, which may also be located on the same web pages, allow us to estimate daily or weekly noise exposure. To utilise the daily exposure ready-reckoner, we will need to know the noise levels and exposure durations that make up a person’s working day. We will need to know the daily noise exposure for each day of the working week for weekly noise exposure, which is useful when someone’s noise exposure fluctuates significantly from day to day. These quick-thinkers can be printed for completion by hand. 

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