Vibration

Topics:

The Control of Vibration at Work Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2005 came into force in October 2005.

Hand-arm vibration comes from the use of hand-held power tools and can be the cause of significant ill health. Whole-body vibration is shaking or jolting of the human body through a supporting surface (usually a seat or the floor).

By law, as an employer, you must assess and identify measures to eliminate or reduce risks from exposure to vibration so that you can protect your employees from risks to their health.

Prevention

Hand-Arm Vibration Syndrome (HAVS) is preventable, but once the damage is done it is permanent.

There are simple and cost-effective ways to eliminate risk of HAVS.

The Control of Vibration at Work Regulations focus on the elimination or control of vibration exposure.

Health surveillance is vital to detect and respond to early signs of damage.

Am I at risk?

You may be at risk if you regularly operate:

  • hammer action tools for more than about 15 minutes per day
  • some rotary and other action tools for more than about one hour per day

Among those most likely to experience high whole body vibration exposures are regular operators and drivers of off-road machinery.

Resources

Key legislation