Hand Arm Vibration (HAV)

What is Hand Arm Vibration?

Hand-arm vibration is vibration transmitted into your hands and arms when you use hand-held powered work equipment. Too much exposure to hand-arm vibration can cause hand-arm vibration syndrome (HAVS) and carpel tunnel syndrome.

What is Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome?

  • HAVS affects the nerves, blood vessels, muscles and joints of the hand, wrist and arm

  • It can become severely disabling if ignored

  • It includes vibration white finger, which can cause severe pain in the affected fingers

When Am I at Risk?

You are at risk if you regularly use hand-held or hand-guided power tools and machines such as:

  • Concrete breakers, concrete pokers

  • Sanders, grinders, disc cutters

  • Hammer drills

  • Chipping hammers

  • Chain saws, brush cutters, hedge trimmers, powered mowers

  • Scabblers or needle guns

You are also at risk if you hold workpieces which vibrate while being processed by powered machinery such as pedestal grinders.

Hirebase Policy

  • We are committed to assisting and advising all our customers on the impact of vibration in their businesses.

  • We are working closely with our tool suppliers to provide the best power tool package in the hire industry.

  • We aim to supply machines that are ‘best in class’ where possible and practical to do so, with the best combination of reduced vibration and performance and taking into account the age of our hire stock. This will ensure that the operator is exposed to the lowest level and duration of vibration as possible.

  • We will continually work with our suppliers to improve the performance and safety of our hire fleet.

  • We will ensure that our staff are trained in HAV issues so that we can advise our customers on vibration.

  • We will supply written instructions with all machines on the correct and safe operation of tools and offer verbal instruction and demonstrations at the point of hire. Leaflets on HAVS are available to all customers at all our Hirebase branches.

For more information on hand-arm vibration visit HSE’s vibration website at www.hse.gov.uk/vibration.

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