Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome
An employer has a duty to provide health surveillance for all their employees who, despite actions to control the risk, are likely to be regularly exposed above the exposure action value or are considered to be at risk for any other reason. The Health and Safety Executive Guidance (HSG88) recommends a preventative approach to control the risk of injury. HAVS is preventable, but once the damage is done, it is permanent.
The Control of Vibration at Work Regulations 2005 ensures that employers have to take notice, as the legislation puts risk management at the forefront of dealing with the problem. As with many liability issues, it is a difficult area but one where the reduction and even prevention of risk is a realistic goal. This sets out explicit duties that are only implicit under current provisions.