Shaking up metal fabrication health & safety

Posted on 5 Jan 2015 by Jonny Williamson

Diversified technology company, 3M, has launched ‘A Safer Future in Metal Fabrication’, the first in a series of sector-specific events to get beneath the surface of health and safety issues.

Theo Simon, technical specialist at 3M Abrasive Systems Division showed best practices in the proper use of grinding machines, tips on reducing vibration exposure and examples of vibration measurement systems.

Operations managers, managing directors, health and safety specialists and others involved in the personal security processes in their metalworking companies joined 3M at the Heritage Motor Centre in Gaydon, Warwickshire.

Hand-arm vibration (HAV) can cause a range of conditions collectively known as hand-arm vibration syndrome (HAVS) and consists of three components; vascular damage to blood vessels known as Vibration White Finger; neurological damage to nerve endings leading to numbness in fingers; and musculoskeletal reduction in ability to manipulate objects known as Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.

Five million people in the UK, out of a population of 60m , are exposed to HAV and up to 2m of these are at a potentially dangerous level of risk.

Expert advice was also given by 3M Personal Safety Division on how to implement an effective respiratory protection programme and a step-by-step guide to hearing conservation.

The series of metal-processing events is set to continue throughout 2015 and will discuss the importance of having respiratory, hand-arm vibration and hearing protection programmes in place in order to comply with all relevant legislation.