“Plant Operatives Most at Risk from HAVS and Vibration White Finger” Warns Asons Solicitors

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According to the Construction Skills Network (CSN) nearly 659,000 British construction workers could be at risk of developing hand-arm vibration syndrome (HAVS) and vibration white finger, according to new estimates. (1)

The CSN continuously provide market intelligence on industry, this information has been analysed by vibration management specialist Reactec. Reactec have divided the figures into specific occupations that are considered to be at the greatest risk of contracting HAVS or Vibration White Finger because of their continuous use of vibration equipment. (2)

According to Reactec the total number of people affected per industry is as follows:

  •     Plant operatives: 42,210 people
  •     Plant mechanics: 40,280
  •     Steel erectors/structural: 28,640
  •     Civil engineering operatives: 63,020
  •     Wood trade/interior fitters; 262,020
  •     Floorers: 39,260
  •     Electric trades and installation: 183,440

The Medical Research Council has estimated that around 300,000 employees already have advanced symptoms of HAVS or Vibration White Finger. Although well over one million users of hand-held or hand-guided power tools are at increased risk of these diseases, because despite strict guidelines set by the Health and Safety Executive they are exposed to vibration levels above these action levels. Those that are exposed to high levels of vibration for prolonged periods of time may be entitled to make a HAVS or Vibration White Finger Claim. (1)

Suzanne Yates, Legal executive at Asons Solicitors stated that:

“Reactec have identified plant operative and mechanic roles as the occupations potentially most at risk of HAVS and Vibration White Finger, it is vital that employers ensure that the guidelines created by the HSE are followed closely in order to reduce the risk of employees suffering from these preventable diseases.”

Stewart McNaughton, health and safety consultant at Reactec, said:

"The number of construction operatives using vibration tools could pose a real problem to both employers and employees if not managed effectively. It is vital that employers ensure they are effectively monitoring and managing exposure to vibration to avoid the costly consequences of over-exposure, such as claims and employee absences, and also to avoid unnecessary health and safety and tool expenditure commonly associated with paper-based HAVS monitoring." (1)

Asons Solicitors suggest that if someone would like to learn more about the HAVS or the Vibration White Finger Claim process, or if they would like to better understand HAVS and Vibration White Finger , that information is available at http://www.asons.co.uk, or via an expert helpline on 01204 521 133

(1)    Plant operatives top hand-arm vibration syndrome risk list - http://www.personneltoday.com/articles/05/06/2013/59443/plant-operatives-top-hand-arm-vibration-syndrome-risk-list.htm#.Ub7Ea_k3vUM – June 2013
(2)    Construction Skills Network - http://www.citb.co.uk/en-GB/Research/construction-skills-network/ - June 2013

Asons Solicitors is a Bolton-based law practice that specialises in personal injury and industrial disease claims. Founded by brothers Imran Akram and Kamran Akram, Asons Solicitors has developed to become a young and dynamic law firm that delivers practical solutions to clients in times of difficulty. Their continued focus on their staff has seen them awarded with the Investors in People “Gold Award”; which is reflected in the professional and personable approach they take in working with clients. They strive to grow and to develop, and their supportiveness and attention to detail ensures that their clients use them time and again.

For further information contact:
Email: info (at) asons (dot) co.uk
Website: http://www.asons.co.uk

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