Protecting your hearing at work is becoming a growing concern for employers and workers. Protecting your hearing is important with the rise in heavy machinery that exposes an employer to harmful sound levels. Hearing damage is irreversible so taking the desired steps to protect your hearing today starts with the right ear protection with a desired Noise Reduction Rating (NRR).

According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety & Health, over 22 million workers are exposed to hazardous noise levels at work each year in the United States. Moreover, hearing loss disability results in an estimated $242,000,000 in workers’ compensation payments annually. Hearing damage is an invisible disability that not only negatively impacts an individual’s health and well-being, but it creates an occupational safety risk for everybody.

Noise Reduction Rating (NRR) is a common method in measuring values of noise reduction provided by various types of hearing protectors. The scale ranges from 0 to 30 – the higher the NRR value, the greater the noise reduction capability. NRRs are measured by decibels (dB), the standard unit measuring how powerful a specific sound level is. All in all, NRR functions as a ruler for how effectively hearing protection equipment reduces noise in real-time and space. Refer to the diagram below for a visual guide to NRR:

Noise Reduction Rating Chart


Industries where hearing protection is critical:

  1. Manufacturing
    It should come as no surprise that manufacturing floors ring with a constant combination of loud machinery, clanking metal, compressed air, and all the other sounds that go into the production of goods. Statistics show that 80% of manufacturing workers suffer from some level of hearing impairment, the majority occurring within the first decade of employment. The manufacturing industry has a high demand for hearing protection equipment.

  2. Construction/Carpentry/Mining
    These three industries vary greatly; however, they all share the common thread of work-related hearing loss. The tools utilized here operate as high as 115 dB (well above the recommended limit of 85 dB), and lack of oversight along with seasonal employment has made it difficult to fight hearing damage. For workers in these industries, we recommend that hearing protection be implemented at an individual level to remain protected.

  3. Military
    The levels of hearing impairment among military veterans have reached that of an epidemic. Although some soldiers might only deploy for a short period of time, the gunfire, explosions, and aircraft engines regularly associated with warfare can leave a lasting impact on one’s quality of life. The Hearing Health Foundation conducted a study showing that over 60% of returning combat troops from Iraq & Afghanistan suffered from noise-induced hearing loss – the most common service-related disability. As a result, the Department of Defense has initiated the development and implementation of more advanced hearing equipment to protect those serving our country.

  4. Agriculture
    Over a third of farmers in the United States have hearing loss. The loud sounds of combines, tractors, livestock, and other equipment are experienced from a young age, continuing daily if they work their farm. Federal agencies and local groups have taken steps to educate the younger generation of the importance of hearing protection as well as a push for manufacturers to improve noise reduction, however, the issue remains to be fully addressed.

Hearing protection solutions at First Source Wireless

3M Peltor Skull Screw Communication Tip Replacements

  • NRR – 30 dB *Highest NRR Rating Possible
  • In-ear tactical communication
  • 3M classic earplugs provide protection & enable the user to hear in noisy environments
  • 10 EA/Case

3M Peltor TEP-100

The 3M Peltor Tactical Earplug helps protect hearing, utilizing state-of-the-art level-dependent technology to provide hearing protection in noise & situational awareness in quiet environments.

  • Protects hearing
  • Level-dependent function
  • Intuitive one-button operation
  • Rechargeable
  • For tactical, engineering, and maintenance applications
  • NRR – 23 dB

3M Peltor TEP-200

The 3M Peltor Tactical Earplug improves situational awareness & communications in challenging environments. Wireless connectivity for monitoring radio or cell phone sound sources. Two-way communication through shoulder microphones and cell phone is maintained.

  • Able to receive audio signals wirelessly from neck loop accessory
  • Provides hearing protection
  • Environmental Microphones (level-dependent function)
  • Rechargeable via Micro-USSB or 3 AA Batteries
  • NRR – 23 dB

3M Peltor SoundTrap Tactical 6-S Headset/Headband

  • Designed specifically for users working in high-noise environments
  • Deep earcup for all-day comfort
  • NRR – 19 dB
  • Small, compact, & foldable for easy storage
  • Separate microphone, receiver, amplifier, & volume control in each ear cup gives true stereophonic reception

3M Peltor Comtac III Hearing Defender

  • Environmental listening for situational awareness
  • NRR – 20 dB
  • Protects from hazardous steady-state & impulse noise
  • 500-hour battery life
  • Recommended for industries such as agriculture & shooting
  • Environmental listening

3M Peltor Comtac VI NIB Hearing Defender

  • Natural Interaction Behavior (NIB) for peer-to-peer headset communication
  • Omni-directional environmental microphones for level-dependent situational awareness
  • Mission Audio Profile (MAP) to select audibility settings based on anticipated noise exposure
  • NRR – 20 dB


At First Source Wireless, we have acquired a vast range of hearing protection and communications equipment to serve the critical demands of police departments, public safety workers, manufacturers, the military, security teams, construction workers, and many other industries. We proudly deliver the highest quality communications products to our customers, offering the lowest prices in the market.

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