2012-09-01 12:00 - Messages

Implementation and Effectiveness of the European Directive Relating to Vibration in the Workplace

Safe Work Australia is currently examining the development of guidance and the feasibility of a model code of practice on controlling the risks of vibration at work. This report examines the requirements and effectiveness of the European Machinery Directive (2006/42/EC) and the Directive on Vibration (2002/44/EC) as implemented in the United Kingdom. It considers whether adoption of similar regulatory framework could be appropriate for Australia. It also provides a summary of the evidence for the health effects resulting from exposure to vibration and the  identified gaps in vibration health effects knowledge.
This report was commissioned from the UNSW, Canberra/ Foster OHS to address a recommendation made in  the 2010 Safe Work Australia publication  National Hazard Exposure Worker Surveillance: Vibration exposure and the provision of vibration control measures in Australian Workplace which recommended the European Union directives related to vibration be investigated when considering future work health and safety regulatory policy development for vibration.

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A combination of parameters is necessary for the characterization of the acoustical conditions of open-plan offices

In the new international standard ISO 3382-3 the measurement procedure for open-plan offices is described and a number of new room acoustical parameters for the objective evaluation are defined. Among the new parameters are the privacy distance and the distraction distance, both derived from the STI (speech transmission index). With room acoustic simulation software these measurements can be simulated, thus providing a tool for the acoustical design of open-plan offices. The paper presents an example office with a range of alternative acoustical solutions that include different amount of absorption, screens of different height, and different levels of background noise. Also the influence of dynamic background noise from people talking can be taken into account, leading to a significantly reduced privacy distance. The computer simulations provide a background for evaluating the efficiency of various acoustical measures in open-plan office design.
PACS no. 43.55. Ka, 43.55.Dt

Source : Jens Holger Rindel and Claus Lynge Christensen. Acoustical simulation of open-plan offices according to ISO 3382-3. EURONOISE, 10–13 June, Prague 2012. http://www.odeon.dk/pdf/Paper_Euronoise_2012_Rindel_Christensen.pdf


Mise à jour du répertoire des silencieux, soufflettes et pistolets aspirateurs

Souvent bruyants, les appareils alimentés à l'air comprimé peuvent cependant être munis de silencieux, cependant l'efficacité de ces derniers varie beaucoup. C'est aussi le cas, d'ailleurs, des soufflettes et des pistolets à air comprimé. Ce document présente les résultats de mesures obtenues sur des appareils déjà testés en 1995 et encore offerts sur le marché ainsi que ceux obtenus sur 91 nouvelles soufflettes, 22 nouveaux silencieux et 6 pistolets aspirateurs. Le rapport contient un guide d'utilisation pour chaque classe d'appareils, rédigé à partir de ces résultats.

Ceux-ci abordent les risques potentiels liés à l'utilisation des appareils et donnent les modèles de soufflettes les moins bruyants selon les tâches à effectuer.

Source : http://www.irsst.qc.ca/media/documents/PubIRSST/R-612.pdf


Assessment of the cardiovascular system and blood pressure should be done as well as the auditory system for noise exposed shift workers

This study aimed to assess the relationship between shift working and occupational exposure to noise with blood pressure (BP). The study was carried out in a rubber manufacturing company in 2010. The highest rate of hypertension (HTN) and mean systolic and diastolic BP were observed among shift workers who were exposed to noise higher than permissible limit; there was a significant relationship between simultaneous exposures to noise more than the permitted limit and shift work with HTN. The results of our study showed that shift working and simultaneous exposure to noise have an additive effect on occurrence of HTN. It is recommended that during periodic physical examinations of noise exposed shift workers, assessment of the cardiovascular system and BP should be done as well as the auditory system.

Source: Attarchi, M. et al. Effect of Exposure to Occupational Noise and Shift Working on Blood Pressure in Rubber Manufacturing Company Workers. Industrial Health, 2012, vol. 50, no 3, p. 205-213

Driving : The effects of WBV on cerebral oxygenation oscillations and the development of central fatigue

The objective of this study was to assess the effects of WBV on cerebral oxygenation oscillations of the pre-frontal cortex region in healthy men based on the wavelet transform of near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) signals. . This study demonstrates that WBV at 4.5 Hz induce highest cerebral oscillation responses. The enhancement of the cerebral spontaneous oscillation activity indicates an activation of the pre-frontal cortex region and an increased demand for oxygen. At prolonged regional neuronal activity due to vibration exposure, energy demand might exceed energy supply, and an imbalance might occur in brain regions activated. This might contribute to the development of fatigue in occupations exposed to WBV.Relevance to industryOccupations exposed to WBV while driving are at increased risk of accidents. This study examined cerebral oxygenation oscillations in response to WBV at 3, 4.5 and 6 Hz to assess if the activation of the pre-frontal cortex region was a potential contributor to the development of central fatigue.

Source : Zengyong Li, Ming Zhang, Jianyong Li, Qing Xin | Guoqiang Chen , Jianping Li ,  Feifei Liu. Spectral analysis of cerebral oxygenation responses to seated whole-body vibration in healthy men.  International Journal of Industrial Ergonomics; Vol. 42, no 4, July 2012, p. 341–346.


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