Noise exposure is an important element of a safe and healthy environment on an offshore platform. The effect of noise is well documented and the operator of the field placed great emphasis on the management of noise to the benefit of the workforce.

Noise management is best handled at the design phase of any offshore platform construction project. However it is not always possible or feasible to apply designs such that the cumulative noise levels with all the contained processing equipment on the platform, is below the acceptable, normalized noise exposure level.

This paper describes the processes and systems used to manage noise exposure on the facility. This process had three discrete steps. Firstly an exercise was undertaken to map the facility and identify areas of high noise levels while in operation. The workforce was then divided into similar exposure groups (SEGs) and a quantitative noise assessment was done with each individual making up the various SEGs. This data were then normalized to determine any normalized exposure above the threshold of 85dBA. After identifying and assessing the noise levels, the next step involved exposure control. Control was implemented using a hierarchical system – elimination followed by engineering controls and supplemented with administrative controls to meet the company's public health targets. The paper describes one engineering control in which an acoustic wrap was installed on a control valve and the resulting impact it had on the noise levels on the facility. The next step was in evaluating the effectiveness of the controls implemented. This involved taking routine audiometric tests on individuals of the various SEGs and comparing this with their established baseline. It describes how deviation from the baseline was handled, and the important role the company's doctor played in the entire process.

Although noise levels as high as 105dBA exist on the platform, the noise management and controls implemented were effective as there have been no cases of noise induced hearing loss on the facility to date.

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