Expert warning- Don’t take endanger your hearing this Bonfire Night

Bonfire Night
(Last Updated On: November 1, 2021)

A hearing expert is advising people in South Devon to stand at least 20 metres away from firework displays to protect their hearing this Bonfire Night.

Sudden and excessively loud noises can damage people’s hearing, but keeping a good distance from the source of the sound can lessen its negative effects.

Gordon Harrison, Specsavers chief audiologist, says: ‘According to UK regulations, the legal limit for fireworks is 120 decibels. That’s a huge 35 decibels above the level of noise where hearing damage occurs.

‘The good news is, if you distance yourself enough from the fireworks – ideally at least 20 metres from where they are lit – then this should diminish the sound to a safe level.’

Mr Harrison also recommends that anyone putting on a display in South Devon invests in hearing protection.

He adds: ‘Professional pyrotechnics are aware of this and will take the necessary precautions, but if you are lighting fireworks yourself make sure that you invest in a pair of ear plugs or ear defenders.

‘It’s so important to protect your ears if you are exposed to high levels of noise. Not only can loud noise cause pain, tinnitus and a temporary loss of hearing, but long-term exposure to noise can also cause permanent, irreparable nerve damage, that may not show up for a number of years.

‘Prevention is always better than cure, so if you notice any changes in your hearing, make sure to get it checked by your audiologist.’

To explore the range of hearing protection, or to book a hearing test, visit

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