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Vibration White Finger » Hand arm vibration chart

A means of monitoring vibration levels was introduced in the EU in order to help prevent Vibration White Finger (VWF), a personal injury often found in employees of the construction industry who are using vibratory tools.

The EU Hand-Arm Vibration Chart

The EU Hand-Arm Vibration Chart was created by the Hire Association Europe and the Construction Confederation (with Health and Safety Executive approval) to monitor vibration levels and help reduce the number of people suffering from work-related illnesses like Vibration White Finger.

It is essential that an employer maintains equipment, ensures that they are not worn or faulty, and that they give employees regular breaks when using vibratory tools. Using an old or faulty piece of equipment can create extra pressure and movement that aggravates and accelerates conditions like Vibration White Finger.

The chart classifies vibration level figures by placing them in three sections escalating in terms of severity. The colour red on the chart means high (over 10 m/s2: carrying the warning that it is necessary to assess the situation), amber indicates medium (5 to 10 m/s2: two hours maximum use daily) and green indicates low (below 5 m/s2: eight hours maximum use daily).

Vibrations in m/s2 Maximum daily usage in hours
Below 5 Low 8 hours
5 to 10 Medium 2 hours
Over 10 High Assess risk

Different types of equipment are also classified in a similar way according to their vibrations. They fall into categories like sanders; sawing, cutting and grinding equipment; equipment for surface preparation,air tools, metal cutting and garden machinery.

For example, a floor sander or a vibrating poker will achieve 2.5 on the vibration chart (green). For means of comparison, a needle gun would achieve a high 12.2 (red) and a chainsaw 9 (amber).

If you wish to view a full list of equipment and where they stand on the vibratory chart, please go to

Claiming Vibration White Finger compensation

Suffering excessive amounts of vibration over a prolonged period of time causes the body a large amount of stress. Eventually, the body may find that it can not recover quickly enough compared to the amount of stress it has had to endure and conditions like Vibration White Finger develop.

If you have Vibration White Finger as the result of using vibratory tools, and you feel that your employer has not adequately maintained equipment that you had to use, you are likely to be eligible for personal injury compensation.

Our personal injury solicitors have specialist knowledge of industrial injury cases and have an excellent success rate, so you can really have confidence that you have the best possible representation.

To find out more about our UK-leading service or to simply receive some obligation-free and confidential legal advice, complete an online claim form or call us on 01582 635096.