Characteristics of annual exposure to noise among private farmers on familyfarms of mixed-production profile.

Department of Physical Occupational Hazards, Institute of Agricultural Medicine,Jaczewskiego 2, P.O. Box 185, 20-950 Lublin, Poland. solecki@galen.imw.lublin.pl
Ann Agric Environ Med 2006;13(1):113–118
The objective of the study was the recognition and evaluation of annualexposure to noise among private farmers on farms engaged in mixed (plant-animal) production. The studycovered 16 family farms using land of the size 13-30 ha (20.4 ha on average). The farms were equippedwith agricultural tractors (2.4 tractors on average), selected workshop machinery, saws for logging andmachines for the production of fodder. The following basic parameters were applied for the hygienic evaluationof noise: total monthly exposure and mean equivalent daily exposure expressed in Pa2 h. The study indicatedthat the highest values for total monthly exposure to noise were observed in 5 months, i.e. September,October, August, November and April. High total exposure values obtained in the summer-autumn months(August-November) are associated with the performance of such work activities as: harvesting of cerealsand root plants, and cultivation of soil (characterised by the emission of sounds of high levels), withprolonged exposure to this factor and a large number of workdays in these months. In April, however,the occurrence of high total exposure values was due to intensive field activities (ploughing, harrowing,sowing), and prolonged exposure to this factor. In the seasons of the year analysed, high equivalentexposure values were observed within the range: 5.53-6.61 Pa2 h. Mean value for this parameter for thewhole year reached the value of 4.27 Pa(2) h (standard exceeded 4.3 times). This value is equivalentto a mean exposure level equal to 91.3 dB. The results of studies of annual exposure to noise obtainedby some other authors are close to the data presented in this report, and confirm that the degree ofnoise load clearly depends on the type of agricultural production and type of machines applied.
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