RR894 - Hand-arm vibration of horticultural machinery Part 2

In recent years there have been many cases of HAVS being reported for people who work in agriculture, horticulture and landscape gardening. HSE/HSL does not currently hold much information on vibration exposures in these areas of work.

The work described in this report assesses the standard test for hedge trimmers defined in BS EN ISO 10517:2009 for repeatability and ease of use and where possible for reproducibility (by comparing machine manufacturers' declared vibration against HSL measurements to the same standardised procedures). It also assesses the validity of the measurement techniques adopted in the vibration emission test, investigates some of the factors which are likely to influence the results of the test and compares the vibration emission values with vibration magnitudes measured under real operating conditions.

The report concludes that for three of the four hedge trimmers the vibration emissions slightly overestimate the upper quartile. For the fourth hedge trimmer the upper quartile is overestimated by approximately 50%. Placing of the vibration emissions during normal intended use of the machinery in satisfactory rank order cannot be assured by comparing the vibration emissions determined according to the test code, BS EN ISO 10517:2009. The test code inconsistently represents workplace vibration.

This report and the work it describes were funded by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). Its contents, including any opinions and/or conclusions expressed, are those of the authors alone and do not necessarily reflect HSE policy.

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Updated 2021-04-23