Most organisations who work with vibration exposure in some form, know that under the Control of Vibration at Work Regulations 2005, they are required to manage the risk of, and monitor, vibration exposure.
However, the regulations only state the employers need to assess and manage the risk of vibration exposure:
“In conducting the risk assessment, the employer shall assess daily exposure to vibration by means of;
(a) observation of specific working practices;
(b) reference to relevant information on the probable magnitude of the vibration corresponding to the equipment used in the particular working conditions; and
(c) if necessary, measurement of the magnitude of vibration to which his employees are liable to be exposed.
And the employer shall assess whether any employees are likely to be exposed to vibration at or above an exposure action value or above an exposure limit value.”
The next section of the regulations (Part 5) goes on to explain:
“Risk assessment is about identifying sensible and proportionate measures to control the risks in your workplace, not about creating huge amounts of paperwork.”
In 2005, when the regulations were brought into force, risk assessments and managing the risks of vibration levels was a largely paper-based activity, making it time-consuming, labour-intensive and arduous to administer – all distracting from an organisations main focus.
How to continuously monitor vibration levels
So, how can an organisation truly manage the risk vibration exposure poses to employees without continuously monitoring vibration levels?
The answer is simply that you can’t. To be managing the risk of vibration exposure and be 100% protecting your staff, you need to be continuously measuring and monitoring vibration levels.
The range of vibration exposure experienced by uses can vary hugely. An example of this is a brand new drill, which comes with 2 different vibration emissions; one for concrete and one for metal. If we put these numbers into the HSE ready reckoner for comparison, we get very different readings. For one minutes use at 2.5 MS2 gives zero points but at 9MS2 it exposes the user to 3 points. But what happens when it is in use for 37 minutes and that gives 100 HSE points (EAV) or 8 HSE points! The difference in exposure levels is incredible – and really highlights the need for accurate, real-time measurements and continuous monitoring.
Technology has caught up sufficiently to make it easy to continuously measure and monitor vibration levels without reams of paperwork and time-consuming form filling!
The HAVSPRO is an on-tool vibration measuring and monitoring system that provides continuous, real-time, accurate vibration data. With it’s simple, Pick, Click and Go solution, it measures real-time vibration levels on the equipment being used and reports this back to a cloud-based reporting system, accessible from any device.
The real benefit of this system is that it continuously measures and monitors the exact vibration levels each individual is being exposed to. It does this through a tri-axial sensor which is firmly fixed (in line with BS5349, Part 2, point 18.104.22.168) to the vibrating surface and measures accurate vibration levels experienced by that user, on that tool, at that time.
The system also warns users of EAV breaches, 90% ELV breaches and 100% ELV breaches in addition to sending these breach alerts to specified managers and Directors via text and/or email so both employees and employers can create a culture of risk management when it comes to vibration exposure. The system also sends a weekly summary report, via email, to assigned users ensuring all stakeholders are kept informed.
Why continuously monitor vibration levels
So, whilst the Control of Vibration at Work Regulations 2005 don’t specifically state that employers need to continuously monitor vibration levels, the questions remain;
i) how can you 100% comply with the regulations,
ii) and how can you 100% protect your staff and business,
if you aren’t measuring and monitoring vibration levels on a continuous basis?
The evolution of technology in recent years has opened up the technical possibilities of what it is now possible to measure, monitor and report on. HAVSPRO offer a solution that allows you to manage the risk of over-exposure right down, ensuring your staff and business are protected and that you are HSE and regulation compliant.
Continued over exposure to vibration levels causes irrevocable health issues, can lead to substantial fines for non-compliance and expensive compensation claims – Don’t jeopardise your staff’s health, your reputation or your bottom line for the sake of continuous monitoring and measuring vibration levels, especially if it costs less than a paper system.
Eliminate the risk of vibration over exposure with continuous vibration measuring, monitoring and reporting with HAVSPRO.
Download our brochure today and start the journey to effectively managing the risk of vibration exposure.