Data on noise‐induced hearing loss (NIHL) in the automotive industry are rare. This pilot study aimed to investigate the prevalence and determinants of NIHL among workers in the automotive industry in China.
A cross‐sectional survey was conducted with 6557 participants from the automotive industry. The questionnaire survey was administered, and individual noise exposure level (L Aeq.8h) and hearing loss level were measured.
Of participants, 96.43% were male; the median age was 27.0 years and 28.82% had NIHL defined as adjusted high‐frequency noise‐induced hearing loss (AHFNIHL). Concerning individual noise levels (L Aeq.8h), 62.53% exceeded 85 dB(A), which were mainly concentrated in various jobs, including metal cutting, surface treatment, stamping, welding, grinding, assembly, plastic molding, and forging. Each typical noise source generated its own unique temporal waveform shape with the type of non‐Gaussian noise. Of workers, 53.15% regularly used hearing protector devices (HPD), and the proportion of regular HPD use increased with L Aeq.8h. The trend test showed that the prevalence of AHFNIHL in male workers significantly increased with an increase in L Aeq.8h at <94 dB(A) and cumulative noise exposure (CNE) in each age group ( P < 0.05 or P < 0.01). A logistic regression analysis showed that CNE and HPD usage frequency were important factors contributing to AHFNIHL.