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Health hazard evaluation report: HETA-88-180-1958, John Morrell and Co., Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

Hales T; Habes D; Fine L; Hornung R; Boiano J
Cincinnati, OH: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, HETA 88-180-1958, 1989 Apr; :1-39
In response to a request from OSHA, technical assistance was rendered in evaluating possible harmful working conditions at John Morrell and Company (SIC-2011), Sioux Falls, South Dakota. This facility employed about 2000 workers in the production of beef and pork products, predominantly for wholesale distribution. Cumulative trauma disorders (CTDs) were diagnosed 880 times in a 1 year period, for an upper extremity CTD incidence rate of 41.7 per 100 full time workers per year, which was high when compared to the 6.7 incidence rate reported for the meat packing industry. Videotapes were made of 185 jobs for ergonomic evaluation. Based on these tapes, 14 jobs were considered to be low risk, 114 jobs were intermediate risk, and 57 jobs were high risk for developing upper extremity CTDs. The strongest predictor of hand wrist CTDs was vibration, followed by force as measured by peak effort. A higher than expected incidence of carpal tunnel syndrome was also diagnosed. The authors conclude that an upper extremity CTD hazard existed at the time of the survey. The authors recommend engineering changes to reduce the job demands of high repetition, high force, and extreme postures. Administrative changes were suggested to reduce the hazards including training, job rotation, rest pauses and changes in the temperatures of the work rooms. Other recommended changes included employee education, early detection, slowing the work pace on returning to work, and the institution of a medical reevaluation of the capability of the worker to return to work.
NIOSH-Author; NIOSH-Health-Hazard-Evaluation; NIOSH-Technical-Assistance-Report; HETA-88-180-1958; Region-8; Hazard-Confirmed; Musculoskeletal-system-disorders; Muscle-function; Food-processing-industry; Repetitive-work; Slaughterhouses; Human-factors-engineering; Cumulative-trauma-disorders; Author Keywords: Meatpacking Plants; slaughterhouses; ergonomics; cumulative trauma disorders; carpal tunnel syndrome; trigger finger; tendonitis; tenosynovitis; vibration; force; repetition
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Field Studies; Hazard Evaluation and Technical Assistance
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National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division