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External L5-S1 joint moments when lifting wire mesh screen used to prevent rock falls in underground mines.

Authors
Gallagher-S; Kotowski-S; Davis-KG; Mark-C; Compton-CJ; Huston-RL; Connelly-J
Source
Int J Ind Ergon 2009 Sep; 39(5):828-834
NIOSHTIC No.
20035010
Abstract
Bolting large sheets of wire mesh screen (WMS) to the roof of underground mines prevents injuries due to rock falls. However, WMS can be heavy and awkward to lift and transport, and may result in significant spinal loading. Accordingly, six male subjects (mean age = 45.8 years + 7.5 SD) were recruited to lift WMS in a laboratory investigation of the biomechanical demands. Biomechanical modeling was used to estimate external moments about L5-S1 for sixteen lifting tasks, using two sizes of WMS. Full-size WMS involved a two-person lift, while half-size WMS involved a one-person lift. Lifts were performed under 168 cm and 213 cm vertical space. Restriction in vertical space increased the maximum L5-S1 extensor moment from 254 to 274 Nm and right lateral bending moment from 195 to 251 Nm. Lifting full sheets of screen (as opposed to half sheets) resulted in an average 33 Nm increase in L5-S1 extensor moment. The L5-S1 extensor moment was increased by an average of 44 Nm (18%) when lifting screens positioned flat on the floor compared to an upright position. Relevance to industry: Large flexible materials are commonly lifted in industrial work environments, and may involve the efforts of two or more workers. The current study examines the low back loading associated with lifting large flexible screens and presents recommendations to reduce spine loading.
Keywords
Musculoskeletal-system; Muscle-stress; Skeletal-stress; Skeletal-system; Laboratory-testing; Spinal-shock; Biomechanical-engineering; Biomechanics; Author Keywords: Low back disorders; Underground mining; Wire mesh screen; Restricted workspace; Manual materials handling; Biomechanical modeling
Contact
Sean Gallagher, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, PO Box 18070, Pittsburgh, PA 15236
Publication Date
20090901
Document Type
Journal Article
Email Address
sfg9@cdc.gov
Fiscal Year
2009
NTIS Accession No.
NTIS Price
ISSN
0169-8141
NIOSH Division
PRL
Priority Area
Mining
Source Name
International Journal of Industrial Ergonomics
State
PA; OH
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