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Method for quantitatively assessing physical risk factors during variable noncyclic work.

Authors
Anton-D; Cook-TM; Rosecrance-JC; Merlino-LA
Source
Scand J Work, Environ & Health 2003 Oct; 29(5):354-362
NIOSHTIC No.
20035159
Abstract
Objectives: Assessing exposure to physical risk factors during variable noncyclic work can be problematic. The purpose of this study was to modify an existing data reduction method for directly quantifying physical exposures during variable noncyclic work. Methods: Myoelectric activity of the finger flexors of two groups of workers, heavy equipment operators (N=25) and mechanics (N=25), was sampled to determine the intensity and duration of forceful exertions during normal tasks. Data were reduced with a modification of the exposure variation analysis (EVA), called clustered EVA (CEVA), using three intensity and two duration categories. A two-way, mixed-effects, repeated-measures analysis of variance evaluated the percentage of sampled work time in each CEVA category. Results: CEVA was able to quantify variable noncyclic work, and it contrasted the work of the two groups, with simple effects significantly different for all the exposure categories. The mechanics performed high-intensity short-duration contractions 9.1% of the time, whereas the operators had similar contractions only 1.8% of the time. Conversely, the operators used low-intensity contractions of prolonged duration over 81% of the time, compared with only 43% for the mechanics. Conclusions: CEVA is a useful modification of EVA for contrasting the noncyclic work typical of understudied industries like construction. A simplification of electromyography with summary measures such as CEVA provides a comprehensible, yet accurate measure of forceful exertions during worktasks.
Keywords
Construction; Construction-equipment; Construction-industry; Construction-materials; Construction-workers; Exposure-assessment; Exposure-levels; Exposure-limits; Exposure-methods; Injuries; Injury-prevention; Risk-analysis; Risk-factors; Safety-climate; Safety-education; Safety-equipment; Safety-measures; Safety-monitoring; Safety-personnel; Safety-practices; Safety-programs; Muscle-function; Muscle-stress; Muscular-disorders; Musculoskeletal-system-disorders; Occupational-accidents; Occupational-exposure; Occupational-hazards; Occupational-health; Occupational-safety-programs; Occupational-sociology; Occupations; Author Keywords: construction work; electromyography; exposure assessment; force; musculoskeletal disorder; noncyclic work; physical risk factor; quantitative assessment
Contact
D. Anton, Department of Occupational and Environmental Health, College of Public Health, The University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA 52242-5000
CODEN
SWEHDO
Publication Date
20031001
Document Type
Journal Article
Email Address
dan-anton@uiowa.edu
Funding Amount
6544463
Funding Type
Cooperative Agreement; Construction; Grant
Fiscal Year
2004
NTIS Accession No.
NTIS Price
Identifying No.
Cooperative-Agreement-Number-U60-CCU-317202; Grant-Number-T42-CCT-717547; Grant-Number-T42-OH-008491
Issue of Publication
5
ISSN
0355-3140
Priority Area
Construction
Source Name
Scandinavian Journal of Work, Environment and Health
State
MD; CO; IA
Performing Organization
The Center to Protect Workers' Rights
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