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Prolonged and repeated exposure to the high noise levels produced by equipment such as drills, conveyors, crushers, diesel engines, and machinery can have a range of damaging and lasting effects on the human ear. Unprotected exposure during use of explosives or close proximity to air horns can also permanently damage hearing. Where noise levels exceed acceptable standards, MSHA requires that miners wear appropriate hearing protection such as ear plugs and/or ear muffs.