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MCA Launch Whole Body Vibration Guidance

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13.10.2011

UK MCA Launches New MGN 436 Whole Body Vibration Guidance

MGN 436 - Guidance on Mitigating Against the Effects of Shocks and Impacts on Small Vessels.

UK MCA Marine Guidance Notes (MGN) are official notices to all builders, owners, managers and operators of all small vessels.

Launched October 2011 MGN 436 is titled ‘Whole-Body Vibration: Guidance on Mitigating Against the Effects of Shocks and Impacts on Small Vessels’.

This MGN 436 provides guidance on mitigating, where there is a risk of injury, the effects of whole body vibration on small vessels, and in particular severe shocks as a result of impacts.

Guidance is provided to assist in improving the design of vessels to reduce the severity of the impact and to provide a suitable postural position for those onboard to enable them to brace effectively.

There is also guidance for operators on reducing the impact through training, pre-departure briefing and ensuring that the vessel is operated considering the demographic and medical history of those onboard. Advice is provided on the correct posture to take when you are likely to be exposed to shocks as a result of impacts.

Events that have led to MGN 436 include a number of incidents over the past few years involving small craft, travelling at a wide range of speeds, which have received a predominantly vertical shock impact when coming off a wave, resulting in injury to one or more persons on board. Incidents have occurred on inland waters, as well as at sea, and to a wide demographic of the population.

Injuries sustained range from spinal compression injuries, broken bones in the leg and pelvic area and serious damage to joints. When such injuries occur they can be life-changing for those injured.

MGN 436 Guidance on Mitigating Against the Effects of Shocks and Impacts on Small Vessels states that consideration should be given to the vessel moving not just vertically, but in a wide range of planes. Persons onboard will experience not only vertical and horizontal movement but also torsion and a combination of all three.

For more information see Marine Guidance Notes MGN 436

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