Satisfied Clients
Contact Us

Noise & vibration at work assessment | Environmental noise projects | Sound insulation testing |Clay target shooting | Sound surveys | Road and rail noise and vibration | Outdoor music consultant | Planning applications | Pub and club noise | CE marking. - "LET THERE BE SOUND - BUT NOT NOISE"
Welcome to SNV Consultants.co.uk

News Flash                                                     Napierlogo.jpg           RMPlogo.jpg

SNV Consultants are proud to announce their merger with Edinburgh Napier University

SNV consultants have joined forces with Edinburgh Napier University's existing Noise, Vibration & Energy consulting division - Robin Mackenzie Partnership. Ian Watson continues to work with RMP providing an enhanced portfolio of services including: sound insulation and air tightness testing, infra-red thermography and dust monitoring.

Full scope of RMP services can be reviewed on www.rmp.biz

Email: snvconsultants@btconnect.com and rmp@napier.ac.uk
Phone for a discussion and quotation - 01360 770840 or 0845 062 0011

Fax: 0131 455 2563
Principal consultant - Ian Watson BSc CEng FIMechE FIOA


For more than fifteen years we have tackled a wide range of noise and vibration projects. We are proud of our record in resolving all the investigations and assessments at minimum costs to our clients. Ian Watson has acquired engineering, acoustic and vibration experience and knowledge by having over twenty five years involvement in leading a team of engineers, physicists, acousticians and technicians. Ian has consulted on noise and vibration projects designing  circulators for Advanced Gas Cooled Nuclear Reactors, centrifugal, axial and mixed flow fans, large wind turbines, vertical and horizontal shaft preheaters, electrostatic precipitators for power stations, gas scrubbers, tunnels, etc.

If you think that you may be exposing your staff to high levels of noise or vibration call us to discuss your concerns. We can advise on the most practicable approach for compliance with the new Noise and Vibration at Work Regulations recently ratified by the European Union and UK Governments. We always endeavour to successfully complete all investigations and assessments at minimum costs.

The following is a very brief description of some of the services which we provide:


The best way for us to serve our clients is to prevent their workers from Noise Induced Hearing Loss {NIHL}. That also serves the best interests of their employees. No amount of compensation can make up for noise induced hearing damage which makes it very difficult to follow and understand speech.

We carryout overall weighted and linear octave band sound measurements at workstations and compile a comprehensive report which we discuss with those nominated by the Manager. A relatively small effort and investment in noise safety could prevent high compensation claims in the future and protect workers from NIHL which is a common and serious industrial injury. The quality of life of the victims could be gravely affected by inadequate protection to high noise level exposure. It is an insidious process because hearing damage is so gradual and frequency selective that those affected do not realize that their hearing has been permanently damaged until it is too late. Inability to follow and comprehend speech could deprive them of the things which give them the greatest happiness and enjoyment in life. It could also affect their ability to do their work properly. Our hearing and speech intelligibility are immensely important faculties. This wonderful process should be protected by all reasonable means.

We will help you to comply with the current legislation and explain the EU new noise legislation which was ratified in May 2006. The main reason for having two Action Levels is the fact that hearing defenders could prevent personnel from hearing warnings of danger and approaching vehicles. Hence, the Lower Action Level does not force employees to wear hearing defenders. The Lower and Upper Action Levels have both been reduced by five decibels to a noise exposure in one day by one person of 80 and 85 dB(A) respectively. By measuring octave band sound levels we make sure that the selected hearing defenders reduce the calculated ear sound level to below 80 dB(A).

After the site tests or after you have read our report we arrange a discussion meeting to explain the new legislation.We can also show, at no extra cost, a twenty minute DVD noise safety film to your staff and/or supervisors as part of their training in reducing the risk of noise induced hearing loss [NIHL}. We can bring a TV and DVD player at no extra charge.


The current legislation – “Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations {1999}” make employers responsible for monitoring the health of their employees if there is a risk and taking all reasonable and practicable steps to reduce the risk. This Regulation applies to all sources of injury to personnel, including noise and vibration.

Hand/Arm Vibration.

The new EU Hand/Arm vibration legislation came into force in 2005. Compliance with this legislation will reduce the risk of the very painful and debilitating diseases such as vibration white finger {VWF}, and reduce the risk of high financial compensation claims and increasing insurance premiums for employers. The Action and Limit Levels for hand/arm vibration exposure are 2.5 and 5.0 m/s2 rms respectively. These relatively low values could pose serious difficulties for employers who are responsible for workers who use – angle and straight grinders, hammer drills, impact wrenches, pencil grinders, wire brushes, polishers, jack hammers, sand rammers, chain saws, hedge cutters, strimmers, hover mowers, pedestrian mowers and spikers, turf cutters, wacker plates, needle guns, vibrating pokers, etc. It is very important that employers do not allow any of their workers to be exposed to the 5.0 m/s2 Limit Level in one day.

Whole-body Vibration.

We have directly helped the quarry, coal and potash industries, and indirectly many other industries and recreational activities such as those who are responsible for golf courses, to make EU legislation for whole-body vibration a better balance for personnel safety, company viability and national interests by making a case for increasing the proposed seat exposure Limit Level from 0.8 to 1.15 m/s2 rms. This has approximately doubled the time that operators can work before reaching the Limit Level.

We have campaigned for years to improve the whole-body vibration legislation by discarding the irrational, confusing, unreliable and excessively complicated VDV method for measuring and assessing seat vibration exposure. The VDV method is based on a fourth power relationship of exposure time and “vibration” which results in a unit of m/s1.75 which is not even a vibration unit. Hence, no more time or money should be wasted on this irrational and flawed procedure. HSE have recently decided to stop using the VDV method and only use the more rational A(8) method. They should be congratulated for their moral courage and wisdom. More site work is needed to establish safe action levels for workers without unnecessarily threatening jobs and well run businesses. We are now trying to get BSI/ISO to remove all reference to the VDV method from their standards. That would give greater protection to workers and employers and make the vibration assessments cheaper.


There are more complaints about noise than for the sum total of all other forms of environmental pollution. It is a major issue for many companies. Road traffic and plane noise are becoming increasingly dominant. Some Local Authorities give preference to housing development at the expense of our shrinking manufacturing industries. We need both. We have helped to obtain planning permission for housing development, factories, quarries, recreational facilities, restaurants, pubs, etc. We have helped to resolve noise disputes without expensive court proceedings. We have helped to cancel arranged court proceedings when a Local Authority was unjustly sued for hearing damage by a school janitor. This saved taxpayers a lot of money. We have successfully upheld our clients best interests when an attempt was made to use the fundamentally flawed and unethical “inaudibility” criterion. A hotel owner, a family run public bar and those responsible for a church hall are indebted to our services.

We try to encourage tolerance and reasonable discussions. A balanced approach is the best way to expedite planning applications and to resolve noise disputes.


We can carryout wall sound transmission tests and floor airborne sound tapping tests to current standards to assist in planning applications for new and refurbished houses and buildings.

CE MARKING. ^ Back to Top ^

In order to sell in the EU market it is mandatory for the product to have a CE mark which can only be used when there is compliance with EU safety Regulations. This includes all EU regulations to protect personnel from excessive exposure to noise and vibration. Telephone 020 7215 2913 or 020 7215 1339 for a copy of the dti document on “Machinery – Guidance Notes on UK Regulations”. SNV could help you to comply with noise and vibration legislation for CE marking.

SNV consultants is a consulting division of Edinburgh Napier University

Head office: Edinburgh Napier University, 42 Colinton Road, Edinburgh, EH10 5BT. Tel: 0845 062 0011. Email: rmp@napier.ac.uk
SNV Consultants, 4 Kirkland Avenue, Blanefield, By Glasgow, G63 9BZ. Tel: 01360 770840 Email: snvconsultants@btconnect.com