Nowadays, workers are exposed to all types of risks. It does not matter whether a person works in an office or a kitchen, no one is completely safe from getting hurt. Nonetheless, some sectors are more prone to risks than others and the menaces themselves often vary in nature. Since the advent of industrialisation, especially machinery, there is a risk to which more and more manual workers are being exposed: vibrations. Unfortunately, this problem is often overlooked and some employers do not feel the need to carry out vibration assessments.
What is a vibration assessment?
When doing certain jobs, breadwinners are exposed to heavy vibrations for prolonged periods of time. It might not seem to be much of an ordeal in the first place, but this can lead to serious health issues. To prevent such things from happening, certain proactive measures can be taken. The only way to do this, though, is by executing a vibration assessment. The latter should be undertaken by the management and its objective is to help deciding what course of action to take to make sure that the workforce’s health and safety are not threatened. It is worth noting that it does not only concern companies’ wage-earners, but also people living in the vicinity that may also be affected.
How to evaluate the menace?
For an evaluation to be effective, it has to fulfill some conditions. Those are the following:
It should pinpoint the locations on the premise that are likely to be subject to vibrations
It should take into consideration the situations that might endanger the staff in that regard
It must determine the laws that have to be complied with
It has to single out personnel that may need health surveillance
What are the jobs that require vibration assessments?
It might not seem obvious for people who use trains as their main means of transport but train operators are vulnerable to the quivering generated by the vehicle. This is due to the extended period of time they spend conveying.
Demolition & construction industry
This is particularly the case for people handling drilling machines and those nearby.
It might be mining operations, oil extraction or fracking.
Health problems caused by shaking movements
There are several illnesses that are associated with such quivers. The most recurring one, however, is the Hand-Arm Vibration Syndrome, also known as HAVS or Raynaud’s phenomenon. The symptoms range from episodic numbing of fingertips to loss of grip strength as well as bone cysts. Vibrations affecting the whole body are also responsible for a number of other health problems. Here, the manifestations can be much more significant as they do not affect the hands and arms only. Some examples are:
Dizziness or loss of balance
Problems related to the stomach
Those issues can be avoided, or at the very least minimised, by conducting vibration assessments.