Occupational Vibration Exposure

What is occupational vibration exposure?

Occupational vibration exposure is exposure to the vibrating effects of a wide range of tools. Examples include dirt packing devices, woodworking tools, and any other power tools that can cause hand, arm or whole body vibration.

What hazards are associated with occupational vibration?

1. “White Fingers”, also known as Raynaud’s Syndrome; which is a disease of the hands in which the blood vessels in the fingers collapse due to repeated exposure to vibration
2. “Hand and Arm Vibration Syndrome”, also known as “HAVS”; which causes infrequent feelings of numbness and / or tingling in the fingers, hands, or arms
3. Flying debris hazards which break away from vibrating tools

What controls may be used to protect yourself from occupational vibration injuries and illnesses?

1. Select the correct tool for the task you are performing
2. Use tools and equipment only as recommended by the manufacturer
3. Ensure tool parts and extensions are not dull, unbalanced or defective
4. Ensure the material you are using the tool on does not cause excessive vibration
5. Always wear proper personal protective equipment while using power tools
6. Arrange tasks so that vibrating tools and non-vibrating tools can be used alternatively
7. Restrict the number of hours per day you use vibrating tools
8. Use gloves with gripping features that enable your hands to control vibrations better

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