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  1. ITV Report

Cardiff construction workers trial new robotic support vest

Credit: ITV Cymru Wales

Construction workers in Cardiff are trialling a new robotic vest designed to help them lift heavier weights for longer.

The Ekso-vest gives workers extra support on the back and shoulders when lifting objects overhead. It works using a spring loaded mechanism.

The designers say it could help prevent injuries.

The springs kick in when arms are lifted to about chest height and all the weight that ordinarily sits on the shoulders into his back is picked up by the springs through the frame, down through the spine which can be adjusted.

The vest carries all that load, takes the strain away from them, so at the end of the day they go home feeling less strained and less fatigued.

– Chris Townsend, EksoVest project lead

In California, it's widely used in car manufacturing. But it is said to be the first of it's kind to appear in the UK.

It was trialled at Wilmott Dixon, a construction company in Cardiff, where workers said helped prevent strain on their body.

It's been great, it's been effortless, it takes all the strain away from my shoulders and my neck.

– Geraint Rees, construction worker