Think about all the noises you hear on a daily basis: sirens, motorcycle motors, loud radio calls and, of course, the potential of gunfire. Then there are the decibel blasts produced at the firing range. Repeated exposure to loud noises places law enforcement professionals (LEPs) at greater risk of hearing loss than the general public. In one survey of LEPs, more than half voiced concerns that workplace noise could likely damage their hearing, and more than three-quarters felt that hearing impairment could negatively affect their job performance. Considering that most hearing loss is permanent, it pays to invest in protective gear for your ears, such as the products below.
Radians 430-EHP Earmuffs
Whether practicing your shooting skills to become more proficient on the job or as a competitive pastime, each time the trigger is squeezed, you expose your eardrums to an explosive, potentially damaging sound. That’s why firing ranges mandate hearing protection devices. Once a noise measures at least 86 decibels, the Radians 430-EHP Earmuffs’ electronic circuit automatically kicks in to mute the impact and protect the wearer. Boasting a noise reduction rating of 26 on a 1-to-34 scale, the device also possesses an independent microphone programmed to detect and amplify low-sound levels. The battery lasts up to 200 hours. MSRP $34.99.
SureFire EP3 Sonic Defenders Earplugs
Proper hearing protection shouldn’t drown out all noises. It’s crucial for officers to distinguish acceptable sounds while creating a defense against dangerous volumes. The EP3 Sonic Defenders by SureFire make this distinction for you. The earplugs allow safe-level sounds to pass through undeterred, while sounds reaching 85 decibels or louder are directed through a noise-reducing filter. Of course, comfort is a big factor, too. These devices are molded out of a soft, hypoallergenic polymer that not only provides a cushy fit, but an extended lifecycle when properly cared for. Earplugs fit conveniently under helmets and masks. MSRP $13.95.
New Motorola Solutions Tactical Boomless Temple Transducer
For scenarios in which hands-free communication becomes paramount, the Motorola Solutions Tactical Boomless Temple Transducer enables officers to receive radio communication via bone vibrations guided to the inner ear canal, allowing them to be simultaneously hands-on with other tasks. The Transducer also comfortably fits under traditional hearing protection and helmets. This ensures hearing health in critical circumstances that may call for loud tactics such as stun grenades, but the versatile Transducer accommodates regular environmental noises as well. MSRP $377.