AN ACOUSTICS company from Cawood has sent a letter offering free advice to licensed premises of all kinds in York and Harrogate about strict new noise laws that came into affect last April.

But by way of answer has come… deafening silence.

Chris Chittock, managing director of Dragonfly Acoustics, said: “I cannot understand it. A lot of pubs, bars, restaurants, nightclubs and live music venues are now affected for the first time by these regulations which are designed to prevent hearing damage to staff from excessive noise.

“Research by the Royal National Institute for The Deaf shows that 68 per cent of companies are unaware of their legal obligations to comply with the The Control Of Noise at Work Regulations.

“These were enacted in 2006 but only lately have been extended to the entertainment sector.

“Noise levels in a busy pub or bar mean that within an hour the noise exposure of bar staff can easily reach the point at which the regulations require some action by the employer.

“Nightclubs and pubs etc that don’t react to this are risking action by the Health and Safety Executive and legal claims from employees alleging damaged hearing. Often this can result in compensation claims of up to £30,000.”

Mr Chittock, who was a finalist in the Young Entrepreneur of the Year category in The Press Business Awards 2008, said that he sent out 50 letters to those organisations he thought would be affected.

“I am not chastising them for their lack of reaction. I am genuinely worried for them. All I was doing was offering free advice without obligation and that offer still stands.”

Meanwhile, he offers this guide to staff and employers: “If they need to raise their voice to have a conversation with a person standing two metres away, then noise levels exceed the point at which an assessment of staff noise exposure would be prudent.”

Dragonfly Acoustics was started by Chris in 2007 and offers expertise in all aspects of noise management and control. He has a degree in audio technology and worked for eight years with massive acoustic consultancies like the RPS Group and SLR Consulting.