The risks vibration can cause in the Forestry industry
It is estimated that 35% of land within the European Union is covered in wooded land area, which means that working in forestry and woodwork is a lucrative industry.
Although a valuable resource, forests can be a dangerous place to work with incidents of fatal accidents and injuries higher than many other sectors of work particularly with the use of chainsaws and the risks that falling trees can hold.
Heavy workloads, exposures to noise, vibration and biological hazards can also put workers in the forest at risk with the dangers of hand-arm vibration conditions and vibration induced ‘white-finger’ syndrome being relatively high.
With this in mind, as forestry worker who works with these types of equipment it is imperative to place close attention to rules, guidance and regulations on health and safety.
According to expert views it is estimated that the majority of vibration related conditions come as a result of mobile machines, hand tools and stationary machines used in cultivating and producing wood.
Hand-arm Vibration and ‘white finger’ conditions affect blood circulation and can cause damage to nerves and muscles and can be generated as a result of long term exposure to powered hand-held and hand guided machines which include stump grinders and chainsaws.
In order to prevent such eventualities, employers and employees should follow guidance contained within The Control of Vibration at Work Regulations 2005which has the main aim of controlling risk.
The regulations require three main actions
- Risk identification as a result of the hand held device
- Information and training must be provide for all workers and employers
- Health Surveillance must be implemented
If any risks are established, alternative methods should always be found to performing the job and lower vibration technologies should be sourced. You may find some of these on our website at PS Marsden.
For information on any of our forestry equipment, or for guidance on how to get the best out of the equipment you purchase please contact us.