Last Gasp — Calculating personal vibration exposure

hand-arm vibration syndrome

The Claimant in a claim for hand-arm vibration syndrome (HAVS) was involved in the changing of tyres and the repair of punctures on cars, vans, and lorries from a mobile van.

A Finch acoustic engineering expert was instructed by the Defendant to advise the Court on the likely vibration exposure, the case eventually went to Court. The Claimant’s main area of complaint was the use of a 1-inch impact wrench to remove the wheel nuts of lorries and their trailers, which he said could take more than a minute to remove each nut if they were ‘stuck’.

The Finch expert looked at the specifications of the compressor and the air cylinder in the van and was able to deduce that there was only enough air in the cylinder to run the large wrench for a fraction of a minute and that the cylinder would take many minutes to refill. The expert was able to use this information to calculate the Claimant’s daily personal vibration exposure.