Up to 70% of the 700 occupational-related illness cases reported in Johor Baru, Malaysia, since early this year were related to loss of hearing.
This was the finding of the state's Occupational Safety and Health Department, which identified prolonged noise pollution at workplaces as the most prominent cause of the hearing problems among workers.
Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act 1994, Malaysian employers must ensure that they abide by noise regulations.
Johor Occupational Safety and Health Department director Saiful Azhar Mohd Said disclosed that aside from hearing loss, other occupational-related illness cases included bodily injuries and Muscular Skeletal Disorder.
The number of work-related illnesses is also believed to be higher than what has actually been reported.
"“We are certain there were many cases that went unreported and hope that the affected employees would come forward so that we could carry out investigations and take appropriate actions," said Saiful.