Title: A cross-sectional survey of hand arm vibration symptoms among angle grinder operators employed in sheet metal work in North India

Authors: Siddhartha Saha; Parveen Kalra

Addresses: Department of Mechanical Engineering, Baba Banda Singh Bahadur Engineering College, Fatehgarh Sahib, Punjab, India ' Department of Production Engineering, PEC, University of Technology, Chandigarh, India

Abstract: This study investigates the prevalence of hand arm vibration symptoms and musculoskeletal disorders in the hand and arm of the angle grinder operators of sheet metal industries located in Chandigarh and nearby industrial areas in Northern India. Hand-transmitted vibration was measured in 42 sheet metal industries. A total of 83 workers, who were mainly employed for grinding job, were interviewed and vibration characteristics were measured using tri-axial accelerometer. Hand arm vibration symptoms, musculoskeletal complaints in hands and its correlation with tool weight were investigated. Results shown 84% daily vibration exposure measurements exceeded exposure action value (EAV) and 24% measurements exceeded exposure limit value (ELV). Hand arm vibration symptoms were finger numbness (40%), tingling (29%) and vibration white finger (VWF) (13%). Hand arm vibration symptoms in the workers were not significantly associated with tool weight. However, tool weight was significantly associated with musculoskeletal complaints in wrist, forearm and elbow of the workers. Preventive measures to reduce musculoskeletal complaints are proposed.

Keywords: angle grinders; HAVS; hand arm vibration syndrome; musculoskeletal disorders; power hand tools; sheet metal work; India; human factors; ergonomics; finger numbness; tingling; vibration white finger; VWF; tool weight; wrist; forearm; elbow.

DOI: 10.1504/IJHFE.2016.082240

International Journal of Human Factors and Ergonomics, 2016 Vol.4 No.2, pp.112 - 125

Available online: 13 Feb 2017 *

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