Construction can take a long time no matter what side of the project you are on. One of the things that can make construction take longer is the long list of rules that comes with getting the job done.

There are regulations about safety equipment and what conditions are acceptable for workers, among many others. An essential part of managing the work environment is paying attention to how loud it is.

Here’s what you should know about the sound level at your construction site.

The level is lower than you may think

It is easy to look at all the tools and think that the site is supposed to be loud; after all, it is a construction site. There may be drills, hammers, fans and other noisy equipment. All tools your employees need to get the job done.

Unfortunately, all those sounds add up. Even if employees are working outside, the combination of multiple pieces of equipment can become very loud and a potential source for hearing loss. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has set standards for acceptable levels for construction workers.

Thankfully, the solution is not difficult

If you have never paid attention to how loud it is on a construction site, the beginning of the solution is finding out just how loud it is. A decibel meter is a small device that will tell you how loud the noisiest parts of the site are.

Once you know your construction site is loud, you need to do something about it. Most commonly, employers will require workers to wear ear protection to dampen the sound of the surrounding equipment.

Keep in mind that simply not knowing how loud it was is not enough to escape consequences. If an OSHA inspector notices your site is too loud, you could face fines or have to stop work until you provide hearing protection for your workers.