By Cass Jacoby, RCS Reporter.
In the RLW, All About Roof and Wall Acoustics, Heidi J. Ellsworth visits with Antoine Habellion, the head of technical for ROCKWOOL North America for a conversation about how acoustics can contribute to safety. Antoine previously worked in Paris, France as a building science engineer for ROCKWOOL France. He has a master's degree in civil engineering and an advanced master's degree in building science.
Antione explains that, while noise seems like a little detail, it is deeply important to the ways we communicate and concentrate. When it comes to the workplace, sound can be the difference between an accident happening. He advocates for thinking of noise reduction and acoustics as a kind of safety protocol.
“Noise can represent a hazard, especially in the workplace,” says Antoine. “In fact, noise is now typically recognized as a serious health hazard. In the 1999 guidelines for community noise, the World Health Organization declared that noise-induced hearing impairment is the most prevalent irreversible occupational hazard. And it is estimated that 120 million people worldwide have disabling hearing difficulties. So it is something that we definitely need to focus on a lot more.”
Antoine explains how sound impacts us, from the loudest sounds to the quietest sounds. He highlights that sound is a huge contributor to creating stress, be it exposure to high levels of noise that cause permanent hearing loss, or short-term exposure to loud noise that can cause a ringing in the ears. “If you are always exposed to noise, it can reduce productivity of course,” says Antoine. “But even more importantly, it can interfere with communication and concentration.”
That is why it is so important to consider mitigating the noise within a room. Nearly everyone can benefit from better acoustics and more thoughtful building design because it is a part of creating a building as a safe space. “All the buildings’ occupants benefit from more thoughtful acoustics,” says Antoine. “It might sound like a little bit of a small thing, but to me it's very important.”
Read, Listen, or Watch this informative RLW about roof and wall acoustics today and start learning more about acoustics, sound and what fibrous insulation can do for a building.
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