Improving Vibration Safety In Hazardous Environments
Wednesday, October 19th, 2011
New safety tech for hazardous industries.
Vibration expert Reactec has officially launched the ATEX HAVmeter, a new version of the highly proven, award-winning HAVmeter device that has been specifically designed for use in potentially dangerous or hazardous environments.
The ATEX-accredited version of the highly successful HAVmeter system – which has been designed to keep workers protected from contracting chronic injuries from vibrating power tools – can now be deployed in the UK offshore oil and gas, nuclear sector and petrochemical industries.
The HAVmeter technology is used to monitor vibration levels in order to prevent workers from contracting Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome (HAVS) – one of the biggest risks associated with using vibrating power tools or equipment. More commonly known as Vibration White Finger, the disease affects the functionality of blood vessels and can result in symptoms such as numbness or tingling of the fingers, loss of strength in the hands and the cold whitening of the fingertips.
By recording the vibration exposure levels and trigger times from vibrating power tools, the HAVmeters help to provide an in-depth and accurate overview of every employee’s vibration exposure so that they do not exceed the levels stipulated by the Health & Safety Executive (HSE).
The ATEX HAVmeters have also been designed specifically to comply with European ATEX and International IECEx directives required for potentially hazardous and explosive atmospheres.
ATR Group, Reactec’s UKCS Oil and Gas partners have successfully rolled out the system across a number of key North Sea Oil and Gas projects and proven its effectiveness as a core part of their clients’ HAV management systems.
HAVmeter solutions for vibration safety
Jim O’Hagan, managing director of Reactec, said: “The standard HAVmeter devices are already seen as the best method for monitoring vibration levels and cutting exposure to HAVS among workers in the construction, ground maintenance and manufacturing sectors.
“The ATEX HAVmeter is a natural development from the standard HAVmeter and satisfies the requirements of the intrinsically safe industry.”
“The ATEX HAVmeter which is a variation on our award-winning design has been fully certified by Baseefa and adheres to the ATEX directives required for workers’ safety. It has a hazardous area classification of Zone 0 which is the highest rating where an explosive atmosphere is present continuously, enabling the benefits of the HAVmeter system to be experienced by more workers in the UK than ever before.
“We envisage the ATEX HAVmeter becoming the accepted tool that the Oil and Gas industry uses to support its commitment to reducing the risk to tool operators of Hand Arm Vibration. We’re delighted to be providing this new technology for our key partner in the oil and gas sector, ATR Group, and look forward to offering the technology to other hazardous sectors in the future.”
Keith Moorhouse, Managing Director of ATR Group said, “Working with Reactec to develop the Intrinsically Safe HAVmeter allowed us to close a gap in our offering.
Minimising vibration injuries in the workplace
“We’ve traditionally excelled in delivering specialist tool and equipment to our sector and in managing our clients’ maintenance and certification schedules.
“Now we’re not just dealing with our clients’ tool assets, we’re dealing with their people – providing outsourced HSE support with respect to HAV monitoring and recording. The fact that HAVmeter empowers employees to manage their exposure in real time, and automatically collects the HAV data, gives ATR Group a strong foundation to support clients in the adoption of best practice in HAV management.”
The HAVmeter is a small, easy to use device that has been designed to help protect workers from contracting Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome by monitoring and recording their exposure to vibration from power tools and other vibrating equipment.
The system provides every employee with a HAVmeter device that is programmed with their individual vibration exposure limits, which they attach to every tool that they use during their shift. The meters collate data about the amount of vibration that workers are exposed to and flash a warning when the limits are reached.
Reactec is the UK leader in providing vibration analysis and validation for the design stage of new and next-generation technology products, and offers a range of services from expert consultancy to full project implementation.