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RR1164 - The effectiveness of British Standard BS EN ISO 28927-10:2011 concerning the vibration emission of percussive drills, hammers and breakers

Hand-Arm Vibration Syndrome (HAVS) is a painful and disabling disorder of the blood vessels, nerves and joints, caused by exposure to hand transmitted vibration, often from use of power tools. HAVS is preventable, but once damage is done, it is irreversible.

The Supply of Machinery (Safety) Regulations 2008 require manufacturers to minimise machinery vibration risk and declare vibration emission. British standard test codes can be used for this declaration.

This report will be of interest to standards makers and technical specialists dealing with hand arm vibration emission standards. It describes work carried out up until 2013 to investigate BS EN ISO 28927-10:2011, a British Standard that defines a vibration emission test code for percussive drills, hammers and breakers.

For the majority of tool types covered, the test code does not produce vibration magnitudes that represent the in-use vibration; the only exception being some rock drills. Any risk assessment based on emission values generated by this test code would be likely to result in a serious underestimate of the in-use vibration risk.

Use of the dynamic loading device (known as the dynaload) for testing vibration emissions is not suitable for generating values that reflect the upper quartile of in-use vibration magnitudes.

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Updated 2020-11-25