- Project plans
- Project activities
- Legislation and standards
- Industry context
Last edited 23 Aug 2019
Vibration white finger
Outdoor work can be hazardous - even with appropriate health and safety policies and risk assessments - if employees do not understand the risks and receive appropriate training to manage their own PPE responsibilities, then they may be putting themselves at increased risk.
Vibration White Finger (also known as Raynaud’s disease) affects around 600 people per year with only 635 documented disability cases in 2012. Mostly due to tougher regulations and awareness, which mandates limited exposure to vibrating equipment for workers VWF is on the decline; however, it still affects 20% of the population worldwide.
When working in the cold, those who operate vibrating hand-held machinery are at increased risk for VWF, which is triggered by overexposure to vibrating machinery. The symptoms include the tops of the fingers turning white because of abnormal spasms in the blood vessels, limiting blood supply to local tissues. The primary condition is an autoimmune disease of the connective tissues, but VWF is a secondary characteristic.
VWF can be treated, alleviated, or prevented by wearing gloves in the cold to increase circulation. In serious yet rare cases, VWF can cause ulcers, scarring, or tissue death (also known as gangrene).
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
Featured articles and news
Full of passion and acerbic wit. 1 min book review.
Reminding us what is possible.
Five signs you are at risk.
Biotechnology as it applies to the built environment.
Stopping sound coming through windows.
Government response to the Building a Safer Future consultation.
Energy savings quickly payback any small additional capital investment.
Overbuild and air-space developments.
Airports National Policy Statement and its impact on infrastructure.
Organisations will collaborate on infrastructure initiatives.
Technology informs procurement and planning practices.