Human Vibration Exposure – Protecting workers from the effects of vibration
Analogical to the impact of hazardous noise levels, excessive vibration exposure can put your workers well-being and health at risk. To ensure a safe work environment for your workers and protect your business against future claims, all sorts of hazardous exposures have to be considered. We are your competent partner when it comes to assessing the vibration exposure of your workers and assist you mitigating hazardous levels. Our solutions are tailored to suit your business, taking into account cost-benefit ratios and minimum downtime.
Whole-body vibration (WBV) is vibration transmitted to the whole body by the surface supporting it, for example through a seat or the floor. It is commonly experienced by drivers, operators and passengers in mobile plant when travelling over uneven surfaces. WBV may also be experienced while standing, for example standing on platforms attached to concrete crushing plant. WBV includes sharp impact-like shocks and jolts.
Hand-arm vibration (HAV) is vibration transmitted to a person’s hand and arm when using hand-held power tools. HAV can occur when using hand-guided plant like powered lawn-mowers and while holding materials being processed by plant. HAV is commonly experienced by people who use jack-hammers, chainsaws, grinders, drills, riveters and impact wrenches.
Measurement of vibration can be difficult and complex. If workers report uncomfortable vibrations, or symptoms like tingling and numbness, it is likely their exposure to vibration is reaching levels which could affect their health. This may also be used as an indicator of a vibration problem requiring controls to be put in place to eliminate or minimise exposure, so far as is reasonably practicable.
While there is no Australian workplace exposure standard for vibration it is useful to make a comparison to an accepted standard in order to work out how much vibration exposure is likely to cause a risk. This can be done using daily vibration exposure A(8) or vibration dose value (VDV).
JTA Noise provides comprehensive Vibration Testing and Assessment
JTA Noise staff have conducted numerous measurements and assessments of occupational vibration exposure. Our experience further includes comprehensive Vibration Testing on buildings, machinery and plants. We believe it is essential to identify and understand the root-causes of excessive noise and vibrations to be able to find the most effective and efficient solutions for our clients to create a safe work environment, reduce downtime and maintenance effort, and improve productivity and reliability.
If you need help with any of the above issues and would like to use our comprehensive approach, we look forward to assisting you and outlining a strategy for your needs all the way from assessment and analysis to mitigation and compliance testing.
See also Vibration Testing.
Did you know?
There is evidence to suggest that workers who are exposed to both HAV and noise are more likely to suffer hearing loss than workers exposed to the same level of noise alone. (Guide to Managing Risks of Exposure to Hand-Arm Vibration, Safe Work Australia)
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