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The challenge was launched with the dual goals of inspiring creative ideas and raising business awareness of the market for workplace safety innovation. Ten finalists, selected from 28 submissions to Challenge.gov, were invited to Washington, D.C., to present their solutions to reduce workplace-induced hearing loss.
“This event was an innovative way for government to help better protect workers from job-related hearing loss by connecting the entrepreneurial community with inventors developing solutions,” said Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health Dr. David Michaels.
A panel of judges awarded first place to Nick Laperle and Jeremie Voix for their custom-fitted earpiece designed to provide a worker with protection, communication, and monitoring.
Brendon Dever was selected for second place for a wearable sensor technology that affixes to glasses or protective equipment such as hardhats. The sensor detects noise levels and provides warnings and other communications via color-coded lights.
Third place was awarded to Madeline Bennett for an interchangeable decorative piece that attaches to silicone earplugs. The attachments are manufactured with licensed designs for sports teams, businesses, or music festivals.
For more information and pictures, please visit the DOL Hear and Now webpage.
Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA’s role is to ensure these conditions for America’s working men and women by setting and enforcing standards, and providing training, education and assistance. For more information, visit www.osha.gov.