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H.A.V.S - Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome

Vibration Exposure

Minimising, Managing and Monitoring your risk.

Hand Arm Vibration, or HAV’s, is a painful and disabling condition caused by power tools and machinery. If you regularly work with power tools, compactor plates, road saws and breakers, brush cutters, lawn mowers and hedge trimmers, or any other power tools, you could be at risk.

Here at Hire Station, we always try to supply you with low-vibration tools that are well maintained, along with expert advice and guidance. There are some simple measures you can take to protect yourself -

  • Make sure you buy or hire low-vibration tools and look after them
  • Always use sharp points, chisels and blades
  • Keep warm and keep your blood circulating by flexing your fingers and hands during breaks
  • Make sure you always use the right tool for the job

If you’re an employer, our nationwide team of HAV specialists can help you assess risk, then minimise or even prevent it, tailor-making guidance and solutions to your particular circumstances. And we have the largest database of independent field data, as well as the latest in HAV management systems, including -

  • Reactec HAV meter
  • The HAVi and HAVi Manager Compliance system
  • Toolminde

Managing Arm Vibrations

Successfully managing Hand Arm Vibration requires the support of a toll and equipment hirer who understands the way you work and is able to provide a range of practicable, common sense and innovative solutions. We meet this challenge through our combinations of a 'Buy-Smoot' procurement policy, our independently tested exposure data based on real working applications that enable accurate risks assessments, a nationwide network of highly trained HAV champions and the latest technology in HAV's management including the Havi and Reactec systems.

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Hand Arm Vibrations

Exposure Points System And Ready-Reckoner

The Ready-Reckoner table will help you calculate daily vibration exposure. All you need is the vibration magnitude (level) and exposure time. The ready-reckoner covers a range of vibration magnitudes up to 40 m/s2 and a range of exposure times up to 10 hours.

The exposures for different combinations of vibration magnitude and exposure time are given in exposure points instead of values in m/s2 A(8). You may find the exposure points easier to work with than the A(8) values:

  • exposure points change simply with time: twice the exposure time, twice the number of points;
  • exposure points can be added together, for example where a worker is exposed to two or more different sources of vibration in a day;
  • the exposure action value (2.5 m/s2 A(8)) is equal to 100 points;
  • the exposure limit value (5 m/s2 A(8)) is equal to 400 points.

HAVS - Basic Symptoms

To safeguard yourself or your workforce make sure everybody is on the lookout for the basic symptoms which could indicate HAVS.

Symptoms are:

  • Tingling (medically known as 'paraesthesia or commonly known as ‘pins & needles’)
  • Numbness in the arms and hands - particularly in your finger tips and around your knuckles
  • Struggling to use your hands to pick up or hold items such as buttons or coins etc

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