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The Millennial Generation: Wired for Sound and At Risk for Hearing Loss

November 08, 2017, Posted in News

Written by Mary Padron

Sound-level meter apps available for smart phones "can have a tremendous and far-reaching impact in the area of noise control," says the CDC.

Do you have a favorite sound? Is it the sweet laughter of someone you love? Or do you appreciate the sounds of a rushing river or waves lapping upon the beach of your favorite seaside town? Or, like many Millennials, maybe your favorite sounds are your favorite songs played from your iPod while wearing ear buds.

No matter what your favorite sounds are, how do you protect your hearing so that you are not a victim of noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL), especially if you are a Millennial whose hearing may already be compromised from over exposure to personal electronic devices?

Unfortunately, hearing loss negatively impacts a person's job, relationships, and lifestyle. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that hearing loss "is the third most common chronic physical condition in the United States. It is twice as common as diabetes or cancer."

The National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD) estimates that "approximately 15 percent of Americans (26 million people) between the ages of 20 and 69 have high frequency hearing loss due to over exposure to noise at work or during leisure activities."

Over exposure to noise can be detrimental to hearing health and can lead to:

  • tinnitus (ringing in the ears)
  • temporary, mild, or permanent hearing loss
  • loss of productivity
  • increased probability of work-related accidents and injury

At Risk for Hearing Loss

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor statistics, Millennials represent 36 percent of the U.S. workforce and will represent 75 percent by the year 2025. Born between 1980 and 2000, they already have experienced a steady stream of loud noise in their personal lives through ear buds and personal electronic devices. Plus, younger workers entering the workforce often underestimate the risks of noise hazards.

Additionally, the World Health Organization (WHO) estimates globally that 1.1 billion teenagers and young adults, which includes Millennials, are already at risk for hearing loss from unsafe use of electronic devices or from exposure to dangerous sound levels at nightclubs, concert halls, or sporting events.

In February 2017, CDC released a survey that said around 8 million people ages 20 to 29 suffer from some kind of hearing loss. This amounts to 7 percent of this age group who can’t hear high-pitched sounds. This figure goes up to 10 percent for people ages 30 to 39.

The cumulative effect of over exposure to sound in Millennials' personal and workplace lives could cause the "generation wired for sound" and the younger generations that follow to suffer from hearing loss more frequently than the generations before them. Safety managers and professionals need to address the increased risk of hearing loss for Millennials in their hearing conservation programs, especially because they represent more than one-third of today’s workforce.

How to Motivate Millennials to Protect their Hearing through Technology

Luckily, despite these statistics, WHO says NIHL "is the most common, permanent, and preventable occupational injury in the world." Because Millennials are now the largest generation in the U.S. labor force, having surpassed Baby Boomers and Gen Xers, how can we motivate them to protect their hearing at work and in their personal lives?

Most safety managers are familiar with the primary methods to help prevent hearing loss, including education, engineering and administration controls, "buy quiet" practices, and the use of hearing protection devices (HPDs), such as foam ear plugs and ear muffs.

However, with Millennials, there is another tool which can be helpful—technology and the evolving smart phone apps that help measure sound. After all, Millennials have grown up on technology and respond positively to it. They are tech-savvy, well educated, and they love a good smart phone app.

How can you tell when a noise is unhealthy for your ears? There's an app for that. Sound-level meter apps available for smart phones "can have a tremendous and far-reaching impact in the area of noise control," says CDC. The mobile nature of the smart phone makes it easy for Millennials to take control of their hearing health by downloading apps that measure the decibel level of sounds in the environment around them. CDC and NIOSH say the benefits of these apps include:

  • Raise workers' awareness about their work environment
  • Help workers make informed decisions about the potential hazards to their hearing
  • Serve as a research tool to collect noise exposure data
  • Promote better hearing health and prevention efforts
  • Easy to use


Although many smart phone apps are very accurate, they should not be used for OSHA compliance purposes or professional-grade sound measurement. Instead, sound meter apps should be used as a tool to screen surrounding environments for noise pollution, including workplaces, gyms, concerts, power appliances, kitchen tools, loud moving vehicles, airports, etc. Smart phone apps are not intended to be used in diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition, nor are they intended to be used as legal evidence for workplace/merchandise safety.

However, the inexpensive cost, ease of use, and portability of smart phone apps can provide Millennials with an approximate value of noise levels to motivate them to use hearing protection devices, which include foam ear plugs, passive and electronic ear muffs, custom-molded ear plugs, banded protection, etc.

Five Noise/Sound Meter Apps for iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch

Below are five of the more professional rated apps in the marketplace. Remember, smart phone apps are not as accurate as a professional SPL noise meter, which can cost in the thousands of dollars. However, the affordable apps below, when used properly, can provide a good approximate value of the noise levels in your environment.

Which do you think has more power to motivate a Millennial? A sign that says "Hearing Protection Must Be Worn in This Area," or when a worker activates his or her sound meter app and sees "100 dB SPL"?

In 2014, the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) conducted a pilot study to determine which smart phone apps were the most reliable. The resulting paper, "Evaluation of Smartphone Sound Measurement Applications," was published in the Journal of the Acoustical Society of America. They studied both iOS and Android apps. For more in-depth scientific information about the most reliable smart phone sound-level meter apps, visit

Six Workplace Training Strategies That Will Empower Millennials to Protect Their Hearing

How can a safety professional encourage Millennials to better protect their hearing both in their professional and personal lives? One key way is to develop digital safety training that caters to the generation that grew up with a cell phone in their purse or pocket.

1. Throw away that black training binder and go digital. Offer safety training on the go by including mobile-enabled training in your safety courses. This gives Millennials the flexibility to train any time and anywhere and to engage in training when it best fits into their workflow.

2. Include lots of safety training videos in your modules. Millennials prefer video to PowerPoint decks as they often prefer watching video to reading. The popularity of YouTube among Millennials is a testament to video-based training modules. For example, many workplaces use disposable foam ear plugs for their hearing protection. Instead of showing a diagram on how to insert the ear plug, show a video that focuses on proper insertion techniques. Many foam plug manufacturers have videos like this on their websites for easy download.

3. Position your classroom instruction as a "Coaching Class."

4. Break up content into bite-size, easy-to-read pieces with lots of headlines.

5. Use social media to enhance training. Possible social media training exercise for hearing protection:

Have your employees download one of the sound/ noise level meter apps from the Internet, many of which are free. You may want your employees to download different apps to compare differences. Like a treasure hunt, give your employees three or five key noise areas to measure the Sound Pressure Level (SPL) with their apps. On a dedicated Facebook page for the training exercise, ask them to post the sound pressure level in decibels that correlates to the different noise areas being measured.

Then review the results of the exercise in a group setting. For this discussion, make sure you have different kinds of hearing protection available with a range of NRRs. Then discuss the type of hearing protection needed or not needed for the different noise areas. This exercise makes learning more engaging and memorable and helps increase awareness of "hearing loss danger zones" at your workplace.

6. Ask Millennials for their input about the hearing protection devices for your safety program. Make it fun. Ask them to take a "selfie" wearing the hearing protection and to comment on what they like or don't like about the product in 140 characters or less—think Twitter. This exercise can provide the safety manager with valuable insight on which HPDs will be more readily adopted by their Millennial employees, which always helps increase compliance.

Sound Meter Level Apps Help Raise the Consciousness of Noise Pollution

Whether you are a Millennial, a Gen-Xer, or a Baby Boomer, all workers need to be aware of the dangers of hearing loss. One way to increase awareness is through sound meter level apps that can be affordably downloaded from iTunes or Google Play. Although these apps can’t be used for OSHA compliance, many of them serve as a viable measurement tool that can alert workers to the hearing hazards around them at work and at play.

Sound meter apps help raise the consciousness level of noise pollution; we can hope the increased awareness will lead to heightened levels of compliance for wearing the proper hearing protection at work. Who knows, maybe Millennials will begin to keep foam ear plugs in their purses or pockets alongside their smart phones.


Radians Introduces New Colors in Their Ladies Range Line

November 08, 2017, Posted in News

Written by Mary Padron

MEMPHIS, TN——Radians®, a market leader in the development and manufacturing of safety gear for shooters and hunters, has added two popular colors, coral and aqua, to its ladies range series, which includes hearing protection and safety glasses.

According to Wes Miller, Director of Sales for Sporting Goods, "Women are the fastest growing segment of gun owners in the United States. While they enjoy both sport and leisure shooting, many are simply looking at gun ownership as a means of extra security and protection. Increased enrollment in gun safety courses, range use and gun permits for women means more females want PPE that fits their size and their style while providing maximum comfort and protection.

"Until recently, girls with guns had very limited choices in the colors of their safety gear," says Miller. Our new Ladies PPE Gear gives the female shooter and huntress new color choices in addition to traditional pink."

The Radians Lowset™ low profile, compact folding earmuffs (NRR21) will be sold individually and are now available in a coral/charcoal combination or an aqua/charcoal combination.

Matching ladies range eyewear that complies with ANSI Z87.1+ standards are also sold individually and are designed with a smaller frame to provide a better fit for ladies and youth. The eyewear features sporty, flexible dual molded temple arms for maximum comfort, an adjustable rubber nosepiece for a custom fit, a scratch resistant hard coat, and 99.9% UVA / UVB protection.

A Lowset Range Combo kit in aqua is also available. The kit includes both the earmuff and safety glass and is ideal for new female shooters who are in the market for both ear and eye protection.

Radians new Ladies PPE Gear line can be found at sporting goods outlets and e-commerce sites. All of Radians products are sold through authorized distributors. For more information, visit or call toll-free 1-877-723-4267 to speak to a safety professional.

Radians® is a Memphis, TN-based manufacturer of quality PPE, including safety eyewear, RadWear® high visibility apparel, rainwear, hearing protection, hand protection, head gear, cooling products, heated jackets, eyewash stations, and lens cleaning systems. Radians has partnered with highly respected companies including DSM Dyneema, DEWALT® and BLACK+DECKER™ to provide high performance personal protection products. Their brands include Crossfire® by Radians, Arctic RadWear®, Nordic Blaze®, and VisionAid®. An ISO 9001:2008 certified leader in the PPE industry, the company has additional facilities in Reno, NV, Thomasville, NC, British Columbia, and the United Kingdom. For more information, visit


How Brazilians Cure a Hangover and Other Jet Set Travel Cheats

November 08, 2017, Posted in News

Written by Mark Ellwood

Bicycle maker Lorenzo Martone has serious tips on how to tune out sound on an airplane and always be ready for an adventure.

Lorenzo Martone made his name as publicist for such models as Victoria’s Secret angel Alessandra Ambrosio before turning a passion for bicycles into a successful business. In 2012, he started Martone Cycling Company,  selling luxury bikes and accessories online and at such stores as Los Angeles's Fred Segal and Colette in Paris. Martone’s latest product is a limited-edition rose-gold model of his standard MCC bike.

Martone lives in New York and says he flies around 500,000 miles a year, mostly on American Airlines. It's “the only airline that makes me feel like a millionaire—and that’s the only type of millionaire I am,” he laughs. “In miles.”

Want to tune out noise on a plane? Make like a construction worker.

I’m a light sleeper, and my search for earplugs started from me sleeping with men who snore—I’ve had multiple boyfriends with a serious, severe snoring problem. And the travel experience is so noisy for me, too; airlines have become flying buses, where you come across lots of people that don’t really know how to behave when sharing a small amount of space. So I need good earplugs, and not the ones they give you on the plane. I researched the brand that construction people use, and I use those, which are custom fit to your ear: Radians. But because the airplane itself is so loud, I add a pair of Bose earphones on top of that, even if I’m not listening to music or watching movies.

Always have an emergency kit and make sure it's stocked with these four things.

never leave home without my passport. I remember I was living in Europe, in Paris, and it was one of those casual dinner situations, where friends of friends decided to go to Ibiza right away for the opening weekend of lots of clubs. I couldn’t go, and I regret it. So now, even in the U.S., where I can travel with my driver’s license, I always make sure to bring my passport in case someone has one of those ideas.

And I pack my "What if I bump into a crazy rich friend with a jet?" kit. It consists of some scandalous swimming trunks—I’m Brazilian, so I’m very comfortable in Speedos all day long, and I’m not ashamed of going to the supermarket shirtless—and my sunglasses and hangover pills, Engov. You can buy them over the counter in Brazil, in a gold package that looks like a condom package. You're supposed to take one before you start drinking and another one after, but it’s really hard to remember. I take one when I’m feeling the pain of the hangover, and it always works. I learned about it from my parents who said, "You’re going to be having a big night—here, we don’t want to hear complaints about your headache tomorrow," Every time I go to Brazil, I have more and more orders from friends. It’s like I’m trafficking Engov.

When in St. Barts, do as the locals do. 

I’ve been going to St. Barts with my best friend [and ex-fiancé] Marc Jacobs for maybe seven years now for Christmas and New Years. Don’t be scared—people look up the airport online and see the two little mountains the plane has to go through [to land], and it looks scary, but you get used to it. There is a big New York City art collector slash real estate mogul slash Russian billionaire crowd, but I like that you can make out of St. Barts whatever you want—there’s also a very local side to it, a very islandy Caribbean vibe. There is a place only locals go called Le Select, right in the center [of Gustavia]. It’s been there forever, with a big terrace and plastic chairs; they only have burgers and beer. I always like going there, as it’s the opposite of so many other places on the island that are so frou-frou.

Always opt for an AirBnB over a hotel.

AirBnB has a filter that tells if a place is only for AirBnB or if someone lives there. Most people prefer to go to AirBnBs where there’s no-one [in residence], but I think the opposite. I don’t want to be in a plain apartment decorated with Ikea furniture so it can be rented on AirBnB; I want to open a fridge and see what people eat. I was going to Tel Aviv in the summer of 2014, and all my friends canceled at the last minute, so I found an AirBnB in Yafo, a local neighborhood that wasn’t very touristy. I was on the way up the stairs to the third-floor apartment, and I smelled this delicious cake being cooked. The woman was literally waiting for me, baking a cake—and she was pregnant, very pregnant. I asked when it was due, and she told me, "Tomorrow." I said, "Oh my God, girl, get outta here—what are you doing?Æ 24 hours later, I’m receiving baby pictures, and we’ve kept in touch since then. I even got to meet the baby.

The pros of flying with a bike.

The first thing you need to do is buy a bike suitcase. All you have to do is take the front wheel off your bike, and its fits in the case—those cases are accepted by pretty much any airline, as oversize baggage like surfboards or instruments, but do call and check. You usually need to book in advance, too, as they only allow a certain number of oversize bags on a plane. When you arrive, you go to that section of the airport for extra-size luggage, and the people that are in that room are so interesting: They’re musicians, they’re surfers. In that room, everyone is very chatty. It feels like a little gang of people that share something extra, a little community.

When in a new city, consider exploring by bicycle.

What I love about Tokyo is that you can bike on the sidewalk legally. It’s an interesting experience, as you’re among the pedestrians, and the place is so packed, but they don’t care, and they don’t complain about stepping aside for the bike. People are scared of biking in New York because of the traffic, but I think it’s crazy, and so fun. I love the Lower East Side in New York, especially Forsyth Street, because it has a bike lane in the middle, and it’s very green. That area, the new Chinatown, has such a strong character, and it’s full of new small art galleries I love.

How to travel with your dog.

I started traveling with my dog, Mia, when she was a little puppy so she could get used to it. She is an emotional-support dog—my doctor wrote me a letter that I needed her as an emotional support, because I think I sounded crazy enough when I talked about how attached to her I was. So you need to call and make sure that the letter is in your booking on your airline of preference [so you can bring the dog on board]. The best airports have cute dog relief areas now, too: There was a very cute one in Dallas, and the airport that’s most pet friendly is San Francisco. They love dogs there, and there are lots of signs. I say, if you’re going to fly with a pet, fly via San Francisco.

SOURCE: Bloomberg Pursuits

Radians R-Series Dual Mic Electronic Earmuff

November 08, 2017, Posted in News

Written by Mary Padron

MEMPHIS, TN —— Radians®, a leading manufacturer of high performance safety gear for shooters, hunters, and outdoor enthusiasts, recently introduced the R-Series™ R3200ECS electronic earmuff.

Ideal for hearing range commands, this premium earmuff features digital electronics that amplify low level sounds while compressing noises that exceed safe levels. Compression takes place when sounds surpass 85 decibels - the level at which hearing loss begins. After a discharge, the earmuff quickly allows normal sounds to be heard at safe hearing levels.

The R3200ECS (MSRP $49.99) was engineered with several features to aid in both comfort and performance, including:

    • Tapered, low profile ear cups, for more compatible use with shotguns and rifles
  • Compact folding feature for easy portability and storage
  • Two, independent microphones, right and left, to amplify low level sounds
  • Electronic circuitry ensures impulse noises (muzzle discharge) above unsafe levels are not amplified. "Compression" technology means the user's ability to hear surroundings is not interrupted, but is protected.
  • Soft ear cushions and a premium adjustable headband allow for a comfortable, custom fit to deliver a noise reduction rating (NRR) of 23db.
  • A 3.5mm jack and accessory cable (included) allow the user to easily connect a smart phone, radio or digital audio device for stereo playback
  • An LED "on" indicator light helps to prevent unintentional battery discharge
  • Operates with two AAA Alkaline batteries – not included.


For Radians complete product offering for shooters and hunters, download the Radians Sporting Goods Catalog.

Radians safety gear can be found at fine sporting goods outlets, range venues and e-commerce sites. All of Radians products are sold through authorized distributors. For more information, visit or call toll-free 1-877-723-4267 to speak to a sporting goods safety professional.


Radians Call Sign Bravo and Echo

November 08, 2017, Posted in News

Written by Mary Padron

MEMPHIS, TN — Radians®, a trusted leader in the development and manufacturing of safety gear for law enforcement and public safety professionals, is growing its TACTICAL line to help meet the demand for enhanced performance PPE.

According to Art Kunkle, Radians VP of Retail Sales, "With the reduction in military force and more veterans and serious shooters entering the marketplace, the demand for enhanced performance product is growing. Radians is heeding the call with our new TACTICAL Call Sign Echo and Call Sign Bravo."

TACTICAL Eyewear—Call Sign Bravo

Radians Call Sign Bravo TACTICAL eyewear is tested to meet Ballistic Impact Standards MIL-PRF-32432. Safety glasses that meet the Ballistic Impact Standard will withstand an impact from a projectile traveling approximately four times the speed of projectiles used in the ANSI Z87.1+ safety test. In addition to the improved protection, stylish frames and lenses offer ideal optics, comfort and fit:

  • CSB100—Full frame, low profile dual lens available in smoke and ice (MSRP $11.99)
  • CSB101—Lightweight metal frame with single lens available in clear and amber (MSRP $14.99)
  • CSB102—Half frame available in smoke and clear (MSRP $15.99)

TACTICAL Hearing Protection—Call Sign Echo

Radians TACTICAL hearing protection called Call Sign Echo is available in both passive and electronic earmuffs with a range of NRRs:

  • CSE10BX— Premium electronic, dual microphone, MP3/Smartphone connection, compact folding—NRR23 (MSRP $49.99)
  • CSE20BX—Premium electronic, single microphone, compact folding—NRR26 (MSRP $29.99)
  • CSE30BX—Premium passive, full cup protection, padded headband—NRR28 (MSRP $24.99)
  • CSE40BX—Premium passive, low profile, compact folding—NRR21 (MSRP $14.99)

Radians new TACTICAL line can be found at fine sporting goods outlets and e-commerce sites. All of Radians products are sold through authorized distributors. For more information, visit or call toll-free 1-877-723-4267 and ask for Tina Nelson or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Adjust hearing protectors’ attenuation for real world conditions

June 13, 2017, Posted in News

Written by Mary Padron and Steve Clark

Many different types of hearing protection devices (HPDs) are available in the U.S. marketplace, and all share two attributes:

  1. The packaging for the hearing protector will have the required U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) labeling with the hearing protector’s Noise Reduction Rating or NRR.
  2. The Noise Reduction Rating that appears on the EPA label is supposed to be evaluated under laboratory testing specified by the American National Standards Institute in ANSI S3.19.1974.

The Noise Reduction Rating ( NRR) is an estimate of the amount of potential protection a hearing protection device will provide in a noisy environment. It is simply the decibel (dB) noise attenuation for the earplug or earmuff based on laboratory test data.

The higher the NRR number, greater is the potential for the protector to reduce noise. Currently, the highest NRR rating for earplugs is 33, and the highest available NRR rating for earmuffs is 31. Do not assume that the HPD with the highest NRR is the best choice for your workplace. Over-protection can be harmful when it leaves workers with the inability to hear warning signals, their co-workers, and important commands.

When the NRR is not really real

Unfortunately, the Noise Reduction Rating does not always predict the level of protection workers will actually receive in the field. The NRR is often viewed as inflated and overly optimistic because the NRR does not take into account:

  • The way the product is worn—improper fit
  • The size and condition of the HPD
  • The comfort of the device, which if uncomfortable can compromise the amount of time a worker actually wears his or her HPD
  • The motivation and training of the worker

Five important criticisms of the NRR

The Noise Reduction Rating has been frequently criticized for being overly optimistic in real-world, workplace conditions. In the article “The Naked Truth about NRRs” by Elliott H. Berger, Senior Scientist and recipient of the National Hearing Conservation Association’s (NHCA) Lifetime Achievement Award, Berger states, “Emphasis on noise reduction data as a purchasing criterion, and reliance on such numbers for predicting protection, is both unwarranted and potentially deleterious to the effectiveness of a hearing conservation program.”

Five reasons for the NRR’s “Not Really Real” criticism include:

  1. The NRR doesn’t take into account the misuse and improper fit of the earplug or hearing protector by the user in the real world. Thus, the NRR has a disclaimer on the EPA label that states “when used as directed.”
  2. Consumers and end users have taken the NRR too literally, expecting HPDs to attenuate or block noise in the workplace as they did in the laboratory.
  3. The ANSI S3.19 standard is now outdated. Even though new testing standards are available such as ANSI S12.6, the EPA still requires testing to the S3.19-1974 standard.
  4. Some hearing protector devices are tested in labs without proper accreditation, so their methods often do not comply with required standards.
  5. Test results are sometimes misinterpreted by suppliers.

OSHA’s NRR correction factor

To adjust the NRR so that it more appropriately mirrors workplace conditions, OSHA recommends a 50-percent NRR Correction Factor. OSHA’s Appendix IV:C. Methods for Estimating HPD Attenuation states that “OSHA's experience and the published scientific literature have shown that laboratory-obtained real ear attenuation for HPDs can seldom be achieved in the workplace. To adjust for workplace conditions, OSHA strongly recommends applying a 50-percent correction factor when estimating field attenuation.”

Preventing hearing loss

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), Noise-Induced Hearing Loss “is the most common, permanent, and preventable occupational injury in the world.” It may happen suddenly from an explosive type of blast or gradually over time as a worker is continuously exposed to high noise levels without wearing proper hearing protection. Hearing loss has become the third-leading health issue in America and adversely affects millions of workers in manufacturing, mining, the military, agriculture, landscaping, and construction. The really sad part is that hearing loss is preventable but once it is acquired, it is permanent and irreversible.

Whenever employee noise exposures are at or above an eight-hour time-weighted average (TWA) of 85 dBA, the workplace is required to have a Hearing Conservation Program (HCP).

Training & motivation

Educate your workers and safety specialists about hearing loss by distributing informational brochures, by placing posters and caution signs in key traffic areas, and through annual training programs. Annual training programs are required by OSHA “whenever employee noise exposures are at or above an eight hour time-weighted average (TWA) of 85 dBA… which is considered the action level.” In addition to group training, one-on-one training can be even more effective, especially when it comes to the insertion and proper fit of foam earplugs.

According to OSHA, “Workers who understand the reasons for the hearing conservation programs and the need to protect their hearing will be more motivated to wear their protectors and take audiometric tests.”


When choosing foam earplugs, make sure the earplugs fit properly, are non-irritating, comfortable, and offer the appropriate level of NRR protection. Bullet, barrel, bell, and winged shapes exist to fit a large variety of ear canal shapes and sizes. Disposable foam plugs are ideal for big companies with lots of workers who go through large quantities of plugs quickly.

Earmuffs & banded protection

For short term or intermittent use, earmuffs and banded hearing protectors are an excellent solution as they can be fitted and removed quickly.

Earmuffs can be either passive or electronic. Both are easy to fit properly and come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and styles to fit a wide range of users. NRRs also vary greatly and can be as low as 17dB or as high as 30dB. Earmuffs can be worn over the head, behind the ear, under the chin, and as a hard hat attachment. Because earmuffs are very visible they make it easy for safety officers to check for compliance.

Banded hearing protection can be a good lightweight alternative to earmuffs. Banded hearing protection is easy to remove and is designed to hang conveniently around the neck.

Hearing impacts lives at work & home

When an employee can’t hear properly, his or her performance at work declines and the impairment might cause more accidents and injuries to occur. Not only that, but the employee’s entire lifestyle is compromised by the hearing loss. So protect workers’ hearing every day and specify quality hearing protection that is comfortable, safe, easy to use, and with an appropriate NRR for the application.

For more information, visit or call 1-877-723-4267.



Noise Induced Hearing Loss: Are you doing enough to protect your workers?

January 12, 2016, Posted in News


Safety at Work Magazine recently published an article focused on noise induced hearing loss and what employers can do to protect their workers. 

Read the full article here:
Pages 10 - 12

Also check out our full page Foam Earplug Dispenser Ad on page 32.

Radians Foam Earplug Dispensers

December 21, 2015, Posted in News

Radians Foam Earplug DispensersRadians has just launched new patent-pending Disposable Foam Earplug Dispensers that are available with two of their popular Made in the USA foam plugs, the Resistor and Detour.

These innovative dispensers are a game-changer for workplace safety because they have several patented design features which make the dispenser easy to use, easy to refill, and easy on the environment too.

The reusable dispenser, which comes with a space-saving, slim vertical dispenser box, is easy to mount and refill. Engineered with a variable mounting bracket, the dispenser is easily installed on peg board, slat wall, wire cages, warehouse racks, and drywall, which means you can easily control placement in high traffic areas.

To refill, simply remove the empty box and refill with the replacement dispenser box, which comes in quantities of either 250 or 500 foam earplugs.

The patented flexible structure of the vertical box uses less material than typical dispensers in the marketplace, making Radians’ new dispenser extremely economical and gentler on the environment than traditional plastic dispensers. The patented 360° bi-directional rotating funnel provides workers with quick and easy access to the earplugs, which always helps to increase worker compliancy.

The dispensers are available in their uncorded Made in the USA Resistor plug (PDFP70) and their Detour plug (PDFP30). Both styles of disposable foam plugs have a 32NRR.

For more information about the new dispensers or any of the hearing protection products in Radians’ comprehensive line of high performance safety gear, visit, call 1-877-723-4267 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

SOURCE: Contractor Supply Magazine

Radians Launches Patent Pending Foam Plug Dispensers

December 10, 2015, Posted in News

Radians‬ is excited to launch our eco-friendly, budget-friendly, patent pending Foam Plug ‪‎Dispensers‬, which are available with two of our most popular ‪Made in the USA‬ foam plugs Resistor and Detour. The patented 360 degree bi-directional rotating funnel allows workers to conveniently to get one pair at a time, providing a more hygienic solution to ‪‎Hearing Protection‬ and less waste of earplugs. Easy to mount and refill.


Combat Workplace Noise Pollution to Help Prevent Hearing Loss

November 09, 2015, Posted in News

Yikes! Hearing loss is the third-leading major U.S. public health issue.

By Mary Padron, published on Sep 01, 2015

According to John Hopkins Medicine and the Hearing Loss Association of America, "Hearing loss is the third leading major public health issue, affecting 48 million Americans, or 20% of the adult population." Arthritis leads the way, followed by heart disease. Sixty percent of people with hearing loss are either in the workforce or in educational settings.

One of the leading culprits of hearing loss is workplace noise pollution, which can lead to noise-induced hearing loss (NIHL). Over-exposure to high-noise environments occurs at factories, airports, construction sites, NASCAR races, rock concerts, and on our highways. According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, industries that include mining, agriculture, construction, manufacturing, utilities, transportation, and the military run the highest risk of NIHL noise pollution. Over-exposure to noise has serious consequences to our well-being and hearing, including auditory and non-auditory effects:

  • temporary, mild, or permanent hearing loss
  • tinnitus (ringing in the ears)
  • physical and mental stress
  • reduced concentration and communication
  • loss of productivity
  • increased probability of work-related accidents and injury
  • heart palpitations
  • aggressive behavior
  • exhaustion
What is NIHL?

According to the World Health Organization, noise-induced hearing loss "is the most common, permanent, and preventable occupational injury in the world."

Noise-induced hearing loss may happen suddenly from an explosive type of blast or gradually over time as a worker is continuously exposed to noise above 85 dB without wearing proper hearing protection. Unfortunately, NIHL is an invisible pollutant, so it is often relegated to the back burner while eye protection and high-visibility protection take the job site spotlight. We can't see, taste, touch, or smell noise, and there is no obvious wound or blood—but every workplace should have a hearing conversation program, especially because hearing loss affects millions of workers.

What if you had to continuously listen to your blow dryer or to a juice blender (approximately 80 to 95 dB) for eight hours every day? Surely you would cringe at the thought and become quite agitated. Unfortunately, in numerous industrial settings, millions of American workers are assaulted and exposed to dangerous levels of noise (85 dB or above) every single workday.

How to Combat Workplace NIHL

Three weapons in your hearing loss prevention toolbox are (1) education, (2) "buy quiet" practices, and (3) the use of hearing protection devices (HPDs).

Education and training

Educate your workers and safety specialists about hearing loss by distributing informational brochures, by placing posters and caution signs in key traffic areas, and through annual training programs, which are required by OSHA "whenever employee noise exposures are at or above an eight hour time-weighted average (TWA) of 85 dBA or, equivalently, a dose of 50 percent, which is considered the action level."

"Buy Quiet” practices and other controls

When purchasing new equipment, nip noise in the bud by specifying the acceptable sound output for any new machinery. Be adamant about your sound requirements with your buyers and purchasing agents. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that a national "Buy Quiet" purchasing movement is in place to get the military and corporations to buy "ear friendly" machinery.  Hopefully, as technology improves, this "Buy Quiet" trend will gain greater momentum.

To deal with existing high-noise equipment and environments, consider engineering controls such as silencers, mufflers, and specially constructed acoustic walls to help remove sound. Administrative controls, such as moving workers to a safe area or limiting their time around the sound annoyance, is also effective in reducing noise exposure.

Hearing protection devices

When engineering and administrative controls are not successful in reducing noise exposure, hearing protection devices must be used. OSHA requires that employees be offered a variety of hearing protection devices, including ear muffs and ear plugs.

Just as ears, ear canals, and heads come in many different shapes and sizes, so do the many hearing protection devices available in the marketplace today. There are three primary types of noise related to HPD use: constant, intermittent, and impact/impulse. Constant noise requires single-use hearing protection, multi-use banded hearing protection, or ear muffs. Intermittent noise requires banded hearing protection or ear muffs. Impact or impulse noises are the most severe and require the highest passive noise reducers, double plugging, or electronic/active HPDs.

Which HPD Is Right For Your Safety Program?

Ear plugs

In the 1970s, NASA developed memory foam to assist astronauts with overwhelming G forces. This material was later adapted to make single-use ear plugs because of its slow recovery capabilities and softness. When choosing foam ear plugs, make sure the plugs are self-adjustable, non-irritating, comfortable, and offer the most protection, with NRRs of up to 33dB. Bullet, barrel, bell, and winged shapes exist to fit a large variety of ear canal shapes and sizes. Foam ear plugs are available in fluorescent safety focused colors to aid in compliance verification and many of them are made in the USA.

They come corded and uncorded, plus a variety of packaging options exist, including individually wrapped plugs or bulk options to be placed in dispensers for easy access in high-traffic, high-noise areas. Disposable foam plugs are ideal for big companies with lots of workers who go through large quantities of plugs quickly.

In addition to disposable foam ear plugs, reusable, custom molded, and baffle type ear plugs are available. Reusable plugs are made of silicone, polyvinyl, and other types of rubber. These non-porous plugs can be cleaned with warm water and soap. Custom molded plugs provide a super comfortable and personalized fit and are a favorite among workers, hunters, and musicians because of the proper fit. Baffle plugs have a sound-activated baffle/valve inside that will close when exposed to an impulse noise such as a gunshot. Baffle plugs feature technology that allows normal conversation when no impulse noise is present, allowing workers to hear commands and conversation.

Banded hearing protection and ear muffs

When hearing protection is intermittent, banded hearing protection can be a good lightweight alternative to ear muffs. Banded hearing protection is easy to remove and is designed to hang conveniently around the neck, which means the HPD is always within reach, doesn't touch dirty or oily surfaces, and allows for quick communication.

Ear muffs can be either passive or active. Both are easy to fit properly and come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and styles to fit a wide range of users. NRRs also vary greatly and can be as low as 17dB or as high as 30dB. Ear muffs can be worn over the head, behind the ear, under the chin, and as a hard hat attachment. They are available with lots of value-added features, such as gel-pad cushions on the cups, padded headbands, compact folding headbands, and multi-position headbands.  Because ear muffs are very visible, they make it easy for safety officers to check for compliance.

Active ear muffs use electronic circuitry to cut or compress harmful impulse noises above 85 dB down to a safe level. Ear muffs that feature compression technology will reduce impulse noise to a safe level of 82dB while still allowing you to communicate. Ear muffs that use cutting technology will cut out all impulse noise completely. Some ear muffs also feature microphones that enhance/amplify hearing. Although the recommended use for active ear muffs is with the electronics on, they can be switched off. When the electronics are turned off, the active ear muff then functions as a passive ear muff and can be used in any environment. When the electronics are on, active ear muffs should be used only to protect against impulse noise.

When selecting hearing protection for your safety program always consider the type of noise—continuous or intermittent—the long-term cost, and worker preference. Worker compliance is one of the primary factors when considering the effectiveness of any HPD.

Why Hearing Protection Matters

All of our five senses—sight, taste, touch, smell, and hearing—are a blessing, and the sense of hearing is very important among the five. Think about all the precious moments you would miss if you couldn't hear. You couldn't hear "I love you" from your spouse or grandchild. You couldn't hear the music that makes you want to get up and dance. You couldn't hear the clink of crystal or the special words to loved ones when making a toast. When you can't hear properly, your performance at work declines and your impairment might even cause more accidents and injuries to occur. So protect hearing every day with quality hearing protection, not just because OSHA requirements and other federal regulations demand it. Do it because it is the right thing to do. Work hard. Stay safe.

About the Author

Mary Padron is a MarCom and Event Specialist at Radians®, a leading manufacturer of high-performance hearing protection devices. For more information about Radians' comprehensive line of quality PPE, visit or call 1-877-RADIANS.




Radians for Youth and Women

March 18, 2013, Posted in News

Story from

Posted on March 6, 2013 by huntingmotherearth

I have been using Radians products for more years than I am going to admit to in writing.  Many years ago I was suffering from an inner ear problem, and I couldn’t be around shooting without being in pain. My husband bought me my first set of electronic earmuffs at that time, they were my first Radians.  I was so impressed, I was like a little kid running around telling everyone who would listen how thrilled I was with my hearing protection.  Many of the shooters I was bragging to, had never had a pair of electronic earmuffs, and couldn’t understand how you could hear better, but not blow out your eardrums when shooting, while wearing them.  But, they all went out and bought the same earmuffs I had, after using mine for just a little while!  They became believers!

Now we return to the present, and I am still running around telling everyone how great they are!  I still have my original pair, and they still work great, but I have added to that one over the years.

The Hunter’s Ears model has to be the best all around model I have used.  They feature the dual independently controlled microphones which enhance and amplify sound, while they automatically compress the harmful sudden noise from a muzzle blast.  Like all of the Radians earmuffs, they can be folded very compactly for protection of the unit and ease of storage.  They are comfortable to wear, with lots of adjustment for different sized heads.  I tend to forget I even have them on!

HE4P00CSThe Prowl Ears model is a behind the ear version that still has the amplification and compression features.  These are extremely small and easy to transport and pack.  The package includes 2 units and will work both in the woods or on the job.  Wearing this model, you can easily wear a hat or head band for warmth.

Prowl Ear_PR2601CSMy new favorite pair is the Enhance Ear!  The are a very small design that fits comfortably and securely into your ear.  Like the other electronic hearing protection that Radians offers, these can do the double duty of sound application and harmful sound compression. These do the job of their bigger brothers, while leaving you the freedom of hats, headband and eye glasses without any conflicting. I wore these the entire time I was hog hunting in Alabama recently.  They made hearing the faint hog noises much easier, while of course not doing any damage to my hearing from my shots!  Plus no extra weight to carry around with you!  These will be going to South Africa with me in a couple of months.  I need to watch what I pack because of weight, and these don’t weigh enough to make any difference in my luggage, but they will definitely make a difference when we are sighting in our rifles and hunting!

Enhance Ear_TA2701CSFor my grandchildren, I am loving the new Women and Youth models!  They now offer a Pink Pro-Amp model, which of course is pink.  They feature the dual independent microphones which amplifies your normal conversations while keeping the harmful impulse noises to a safe level. The headband is padded with a moisture wicking material.  These are designed for the smaller heads that we women tend to have.  My granddaughters have been fighting over this pair, so I will probably be adding another into our collection!

Pink Pro-Amp_PAP700CSThere are several combination packs that are offered for Women and Youth.  There is a T-71P/MP22C that pairs the performance shooting glasses with the slim design passive earmuffs.  This combo comes in pink, with the shooting glasses having tasteful accents in pink.  These earmuffs have a Noise Reduction Rating (NNR) of 22.

There is also the True Jr. Combo kit, which has the silver colored True Jr. Earmuuffs designed specifically for the younger shooter.  These are passive, and have a NNR of 21.  This kit also includes the youth model shooting glasses, with 3 interchangeable lens colors.

My grandchildren shoot often with us, so it is important to have eye and hearing protection that not only fits correctly, but also protects their delicate ears and eyes.  These models fit the bill, and also require no batteries!  We used to let them use our electronic versions, and we would have to purchase new batteries absolutely every time we used them.  The kids would inevitably leave the microphones turned on, even after they were done wearing them.  These passive models are perfect for the kids that would forget.

Radians manufactures for several different companies, including Remington.  They have also came out with a complete line of Michael Waddell’s Bone Collector shooting glasses and hearing protection.  Fashionable and functional performance!

I use my hearing protection for every situation.  They go from shooting and hunting to cutting firewood and running other equipment.  The next time you are in the market for a new set of hearing protection, look for the Radians name, you will not be disappointed!  They have a hearing protection for every application and budget!

These products can be purchased at Cabelas, Bass Pro, Gander Mountain, Sears, Amazon and many other retailers.  They range in price from $15.99 for the Low Set Ear Muffs to around $100 for the Hunter’s Ear model.  And the best part…They are Made in the USA!!


Photo Credit:  Diane Hassinger

Radians Youth Kits Protect Eyes & Ears & Make Great Christmas Gifts for Young Shooting Enthusiasts

November 26, 2012, Posted in News



MEMPHIS, TN—November 20, 2012—Young shooters and hunters need to learn early in life that protecting their ears and eyes during a hunt or at the shooting range is paramount to saving their hearing and vision over the long haul.  Young sporting enthusiasts can easily and affordably protect both their ears and eyes with the Radians Youth Combo Kit.

This premium kit contains a youth-sized ear muff to protect hearing from gunshot blasts. It also contains an interchangeable shooting glass with a lens design that lets you easily switch between three lens colors:  clear, silver mirror, and amber.  A microfiber carrying bag and microfiber accessory lens storage pouch are also included to easily protect and carry the shooting glass.

If you already have hearing protection, the interchangeable shooting glass mentioned above comes as a separate kit called the Radians Youth 3 Lens Kit. Both kits make great Christmas present s for the young sporting enthusiast in your life.

For more information about Radians quality personal protective products for shooters and hunters, call 1-877-RADIANS or visit their website at or  Facebook page at

Radians is Packing the Pink To Support the Growing Number of Female Shooters and Hunters

November 26, 2012, Posted in News




MEMPHIS, TN—November 20, 2012—A recent survey by the National Sporting Goods Association (NSGA) reports amazing growth in female participation in hunting and shooting.  According to the NSGA survey, “72 percent more women are hunting with firearms today than just five years ago.” Hunting with a bow and arrow is up 176 percent (thank you Hunger Games!) and shooting with a handgun is up 33 percent.

The survey reports that “3 million women now hunt and over 5 million women enjoy shooting.” To support the growing number of female shooters and hunters, Radians is developing a pink safety line for women that includes eye, ear, and hand protection. Some of the products in the women’s line include:

  • X-TREME™ Anti-Fog Women’s Shooting Glass  (MSRP $15.49)
  • Pink custom molded ear plugs (MSRP $14.99)
  • Lowset™  pink passive earmuffs (MSRP $19.99)
  • Pink Pro-Amp™ electronic earmuffs (MSRP $99.99)
  • Pink Shooter’s kit (shooting glass and earmuff combo (MSRP $24.99)
  • Pink Shooting Gloves (available 2013--MSRP $12.99)

When designing the products for women, Radians considers the differences in female anatomy. For example, their eyewear frames for women are 10% smaller than those made for men, providing the perfect size for women. Although the eyewear styles are more feminine, they are fully functional when it comes to meeting and exceeding ANSI Z87.1+ Standards for safety.

For more information about Radians quality personal protective products for shooters and hunters, including their ladies and youth lines, call 1-877-RADIANS or visit their website at or their Facebook page at

Radians announces new made-in-the-USA foam ear plugs

October 02, 2012, Posted in News

Although hearing protection regulations have been in place for decades, Noise Induced Hearing Loss (NIHL) is still a major occupational illness. Radians' new Made in the USA foam ear plugs (Resistor, Deflector, and Deviator) provide an effective, single-use solution to combat NIHL. Because they are manufactured in America, they are also the patriotic solution to hearing protection.

Tested in accordance with ANSI S3.19-1974 standards, Radians disposable foam ear plugs feature soft, slow-recovery foam for extreme comfort and outstanding noise reduction (NRR 32 and NRR33). They are easy to roll down and insert, and then they expand slowly for a low-pressure fit in virtually any size ear canal.

They are available corded and uncorded in a tapered bullet or bell shape and are conveniently packaged in individual polybags to keep each pair clean. Bulk and case quantities are available allowing organizations to affordably address hearing protection and hygiene issues.

 “As more Americans practice patriotic spending to help jumpstart our sluggish economy, Radians Made in the USA foam plugs not only fulfill the need for quality hearing protection; but they also satisfy the need to buy American,” said Bill England, President of Radians. “There is a lot of value in being able to choose American made products these days, and Radians is on a mission to manufacture a significant amount of high quality personal protective products with a competitive value.”

Radians is a Memphis, TN-based manufacturer of quality safety glasses, hearing protection, performance gloves, high visibility clothing and footwear products. Radians has partnered with highly respected companies including DEWALT, Black & Decker, and Remington to provide high performance personal protection products. The company has additional facilities in Reno, Nevada; Dallas, Texas; Thomasville, NC, and Belmont, Michigan.


Source: ISHN

Radians Supports West Salem Rod & Gun Club's 8th Annual Youth Day

June 25, 2012, Posted in News

Sponsored in part by the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation (RMEF), the West Salem Rod & Gun Club gave children up to 13 years old the ability to participate in RMEF’s program called SAFE (Shooting Access for Everyone).

At the event, SAFE introduced young and novice shooters to safe and responsible firearm use, which included the wearing of Radians shooters glasses and hearing protection. The children also learned about the hunter’s role in conservation and the North American Wildlife Conservation Model. The youth had the opportunity to shoot an Air Rifle with help from RMEF SAFE mentors or experienced shooters.

“Shooting competitions and youth day events are an integral part of Radians grass-roots marketing efforts to showcase our products among shooters and hunters,” says Jim Hink, Director of Marketing.  “These events allow us to foster goodwill among the community and the shooting clubs while simultaneously grooming our youth to become safety conscious.”

Mary Padron, Marketing Communications & Event Coordinator for Radians, works with the various associations and clubs to supply them with Radians safety products, banners, and marketing literature. “Sometimes, we get photos from the events, such as these posted here; and you get to see firsthand how our products keep people safe and make them happy too!”

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