Trials are underway for a “exoskeleton vest” which is aimed to reduce the exertion of lifting and extending working lives for construction workers.
The vest ultimately supports workers arms when lifting above chest height which then transfers the strains usually imposed on the shoulders, back and upper arms to the legs which in turn reduces fatigue and risk of injury.
it was quoted “The vest unit relies on spring loaded links between the arms, back and waist pieces to provide lift assistance but is not powered”. The trial focused on tasks where operatives spend mosdt f their working day with their arms raised such as installation of dry lining or ceiling tiles with one worker stating he could feel a difference within one hour of wearing the vest.
Trials continue… will be interesting to monitor this new invention, definitely a step forward in increasing workers lives 🙂
NOTE: the manual handling guidance limits DO NOT change as a result of this trial becoming industry use.