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World Health Day 2019

(April 5, 2019)

This Sunday marks World Health Day, an annual day set up by the World Health Organisation. The occasion is dedicated to ensuring that everyone has access to the healthcare that they need and deserve. And this year’s World Health Day message is simple, “health for all” which is something we strongly believe in here at Geobear.

Your health is important. At Geobear we recognise this, and we understand we have a duty to recognise any occupational hazards for all our employees.

In line with the control of vibration at work regulations (2005), we have a duty to reduce or eliminate exposure to vibration. Prolonged exposure, if unchecked, can lead to conditions such as Hand Arm Vibration Syndrome (HAVS) and this is something which can be both painful and debilitating. Advanced symptoms cannot be reversed and are likely to become a significant blight on someone’s life.

In order to combat this, last year, we trialled the Havwear system. This involved each tool operator wearing a small wrist monitor, similar in size to a modern Fitbit watch. The monitor is programmed to match the tool and record the level of vibration exposure for each user. A traffic light system signals how close the user is to the Action Level (the level at which the user must stop and take a break), and at how close they are to the Limit Value (the level at which the user has to stop operating the tool for the rest of the shift).

TThe trial of 2018 was considered a great success and we are now in the process of rolling this out across all Geobear employees who are exposed to this occupational risk.

Our SHEQ Manager, Bruno D’Arcy, comments

“As part of our commitment to managing the health and safety of our workforce Geobear has, as of April 2019, issued the Havwear personal vibration monitoring system to all site operatives. Made by Reactec, the Havwear system enables each operative to monitor the vibration exposure from the tools they are using, and therefore to take breaks, or stop, when Action or Limit values have been reached. In addition, the Havwear system allows management, via a web-based portal, to view the vibration data collected from the operatives. Management is then able to use this to adjust exposure, analyse trends, and report on specific projects. Geobear’s strategy is that by accumulating quantitative information about vibration exposure we are much better placed to control it to within safe levels.”

Innovation is at the forefront of everything we do at Geobear and health is no exception. The introduction of the Havwear system will allow us to keep accurate records, control employees’ exposure to health risks. This move demonstrates our commitment to the health and safety of all of our employees.

As we progress with the implementation of the Havwear system throughout our processes, we will continue to closely monitor the results. This will also us to continue to develop new ways in which we can improve the health of our employees. We will continue to monitor the results, and will continue to seek ways in which we can improve the health & safety of our employees, as developments in technology occur.



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