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NIOSH Program Portfolio

 

Manufacturing

NORA Manufacturing Sector Strategic Goals

927ZGGE - Safety Intervention Evaluation in a Helicopter Plant

Start Date: 10/1/2008
End Date: 9/30/2012

Principal Investigator (PI)
Name: Harlan Amandus
Phone: 304-285-5913
E-mail: hea1@cdc.gov
Organization: NIOSH
Sub-Unit: DSR
Funded By: CDC Foundation

Primary Goal Addressed
3.0

Secondary Goals Addressed
1.0 , 2.0


Attributed to Manufacturing
100%

Project Description

Short Summary

The purpose of this project is to develop and document a safety program in a helicopter manufacturing plant which effectively reduces injuries, and to transfer knowledge gained from this program to other companies and industries. The objectives are to:

1) Assess the risk of traumatic and musculoskeletal injuries associated with jobs and tasks among 3,500 employees at Sikorsky Aircraft's Stratford, CT helicopter plant,

2) work with Sikorsky helicopter safety staff, occupational health physician and ergonomics consultant(s) to develop and implement an injury prevention program that targets the highest risk injury problems identified through risk assessment and historical analysis of incurred injuries,

3) evaluate the effectiveness of the Safety program interventions to reduce the number, rate, severity, duration of lost workdays, and number of restricted workdays of injuries,

4) estimate the return on investment of the safety program, and

5) develop guidelines from documentation of the process and effectiveness of the program, and transfer the methodology to other aircraft manufacturing companies and industries.



Description

PS&B for this project will be covered from DSR base funds. Discretionary Funding for this project will come from Sikorski Aircraft through FY 2012.

Purpose:

This study proposes to evaluate the effectiveness of Sikorsky Aircraft's safety program interventions which will be implemented to reduce the most prevalent musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) and traumatic injuries which are occurring in the Stratford, CT plant. In order to do this, rates of injury and MS pain will be evaluated before intervention implementation, and again 1 and 2 years following intervention implementation.

Objectives:

The objectives of this study are described below. NIOSH's role in this project is to address objectives 1 and 3 and Sikorsky's role is to complete objective 2, and both NIOSH and Sikorsky will collaborate in addressing objective 4.

Objective 1. Rank job-task groups at Sikorsky Aircraft's Stratford, CT plant with respect to their rate of documented record of traumatic injuries and musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs), and their rate of symptoms of musculoskeletal (MS) pain reported by the employees in a company survey.

Objective 2: Develop and implement a safety program of interventions to prevent traumatic and MSD injuries.

Objective 3: Evaluate the effectiveness of Sikorsky's safety intervention program to reduce injuries.

Objective 4: Develop and disseminate guidelines related to the effectiveness of this safety program to other aircraft companies and industries.

Methodology:
PS&B for this project will be covered from DSR base funds. Discretionary Funding for this project will come from Sikorski Aircraft through FY 2012.

Purpose:

This study proposes to evaluate the effectiveness of Sikorsky Aircraft's safety program interventions which will be implemented to reduce the most prevalent musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) and traumatic injuries which are occurring in the Stratford, CT plant. In order to do this, rates of injury and MS pain will be evaluated before intervention implementation, and again 1 and 2 years following intervention implementation.

Objectives:

The objectives of this study are described below. NIOSH's role in this project is to address objectives 1 and 3 and Sikorsky's role is to complete objective 2, and both NIOSH and Sikorsky will collaborate in addressing objective 4.

Objective 1. Rank job-task groups at Sikorsky Aircraft's Stratford, CT plant with respect to their rate of documented record of traumatic injuries and musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs), and their rate of symptoms of musculoskeletal (MS) pain reported by the employees in a company survey.

Objective 2: Develop and implement a safety program of interventions to prevent traumatic and MSD injuries.

Objective 3: Evaluate the effectiveness of Sikorsky's safety intervention program to reduce injuries.

Objective 4: Develop and disseminate guidelines related to the effectiveness of this safety program to other aircraft companies and industries.

Methodology:

1. NIOSH will analyze existing company records (first report of injury and workers compensation records, human resources payroll data, and company collected MS symptom survey data) and will rank job-task groups by their rate of traumatic injuries, MSDs, and MS pain. Baseline analyses will be complete by December, 2008.

2. Sikorsky will develop and implement an intervention plan during 2008-2009.

3. NIOSH will evaluate the effectiveness of Sikorsky's safety program through an analysis of traumatic injury and MSD rates from company records before, during and after interventions, and through an analysis of company collected survey data to estimate rates of reported musculoskeletal pain before, during an after intervention from 2008-2010.

4. NIOSH will develop guidelines describing successful components from the Sikorsky program, distribute these guidelines to other aircraft companies, publish findings in peer-reviewed scientific journals, and present findings in scientific and safety forums. Analyses and reports for the one-year follow-up will be completed in 2010 and for the two year follow-up in 2011-2012.



Objectives

Evaluation can be measured by counting the number of documents distributed and follow-up with companies to determine if they have implemented the guidelines in their facilities.



Mission Relevance

PS&B for this project will be covered from DSR base funds. Discretionary Funding for this project will come from Sikorski Aircraft through FY 2012.



The purpose of this study is to evaluate and document the effectiveness of an injury prevention program and to transfer this technology to other industries. The objectives are to document the process, effectiveness, and return on investment of safety program interventions to reduce musculoskeletal and traumatic injuries at Sikorsky Aircraft's Stratford, CT helicopter manufacturing plant. This project will focus on 3,500 machinist, assembly, and warehouse workers at the Stratford, CT plant.



During 2006, Sikorsky Aircraft reported approximately 381 workers' compensation cases of occupational injuries among employees at their Stratford, CT helicopter manufacturing plant. Of these injury cases, 147 (39%) were overexertion, 74 (19%) were repetitive trauma, 67 (18%) were struck by events, and 39 (10%) were falls. Lost workday injury rates among the 3,500 workers (excluding engineers) was approximately 21.7/100 FTE compared to the aircraft industry average of 4.7 in 2002 (BLS, 2004).



This study proposes to evaluate the effectiveness of Sikorsky Aircraft's safety program interventions which will be implemented to reduce the most prevalent musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) and traumatic injuries occurring in the Stratford, CT plant. In order to do this, NIOSH will evaluate rates of injury and MS pain before the intervention, and again 1 and 2 years following intervention implementation. In the past, Sikorsky Aircraft has had an active safety program addressing many material handling activities. This includes installation of overhead lifts to assist in moving heavy parts from material bins and carts to work stations, special portable lifts to transfer parts from pins to machines, special carts for transfer of parts and removal of parts to reduce exposures, and redesign of some work stations to reduce awkward postures. However, there are over 80 sites in the plant that are in need of further attention. Given the large number of injuries still occurring, Sikorsky has committed substantial resources to implement solutions. This study will document Sikorsky's process and the impact of a comprehensive program of interventions. Documentation of the process with accompanying business case results and impact on injury reduction will be disseminated to other industries.



This project addresses the following goals and intermediate goals:

- Manufacturing strategic goal 1: reduce the number of injuries and fatalities due to contact with objects and equipment among workers in the manufacturing sector.

- Manufacturing strategic goal 2: reduce the number of injuries and fatalities resulting from falls among workers in the manufacturing sector.

- Manufacturing sector goal 3: reduce the number of musculoskeletal disorders among manufacturing sector workers

- Traumatic injury cross-sector goal 1: reduce fall injuries in the workplace. (No intermediate goals for traumatic injury cross-sector for falls in manufacturing.)

- Traumatic injury cross-sector goal 4: reduce occupational injuries and deaths due to machines and industrial vehicles. Intermediate goal: reduce occupational injuries and deaths due to machines and industrial vehicles in the manufacturing industry.

- Musculoskeletal Disorders cross-sector strategic goal 4: prevention and reduction of musculoskeletal disorders and related consequences. Intermediate goal 4.2 (Effectiveness): Proven methods for measuring the impact and cost-effectiveness of interventions for preventing or reducing MSDs.



Activity/outputs: This project will contribute publications and presentations for dissemination to other industries to transfer the lessons learned on a 'best practices' safety program which will contribute towards reducing musculoskeletal and traumatic injuries among manufacturing workers.



Page last updated: June 3, 2011
Page last reviewed: May 23, 2011
Content Source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Office of the Director

 

NIOSH Program:

Manufacturing