By introducing newly developed low-vibration tools in production the risk of vibration injuries are reduced without adversely affecting efficiency. The new technology is now being tested at Volvo Construction Equipment.
Vibration damage from handheld machines is today the most common cause of occupational illness and gives rise to injuries, often chronic, to nerves, blood vessels, muscles and bones. In the Volvo Construction Equipment assembly, many handheld machines are used, above all a wrench with counterhold (which holds the nut on the back). These emit a lot of high frequency vibrations in the form of shock.
In the project “Zero Vibration Injuries” financed by Vinnova, RISE has developed several different machine designs with dramatically reduced vibration levels. A counterhold for a wrench has been developed where the vibrations have been reduced by 98 per cent. The new counterhold has been tested in production for a year and been received very positively. The earlier counterholds caused significant vibrations in the fitters’ hands.
“The counterhold is highly appreciated by users,” says Tomas Myrman, head safety officer at Volvo Construction Equipment.
In the next step, the intention is to introduce new low vibration machines into an entire production section. This will constitute a demonstration environment, which should serve as an example and demonstrate in practice that machines do not need to vibrate and harm people.