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Assessment of perceived traumatic injury hazards during drywall hanging.

Pan CS; Chiou SS; Hsiao H; Wassell JT; Keane PR
Int J Ind Ergon 1999 Jan; 25(1):29-37
Workers who handle massive and bulky drywall sheets are at a high risk of traumatic injuries. The objective of this study is to identify the drywall handling tasks and activities which are directly perceived as hazardous by workers. A questionnaire survey was conducted for the study. In the questionnaire, three hanging tasks were included: (1) hanging drywall on the ceiling; (2) hanging drywall on the upper half of the wall; and (3) hanging drywall on the lower half of the wall. Each of the three tasks was divided into 10 to 12 constituent activities. Supportive elevated equipment was also evaluated. Workers were instructed to rate the drywall-hanging tasks/activities and elevated equipment in regard to fall potential, perceived physical stress, and risk of being struck by or against objects, using a seven-point scale (1=hardly at all to 7=a great deal). Results from this study indicate that all the ratings of fall potential, perceived physical stress, and risk of being struck by or against objects while hanging drywall on the ceiling were greater than while performing the other two tasks. Activities involving lifting/carrying/holding drywall sheets were rated as most physically stressful. Workers perceived greatest physical stress and fall potential when wearing stilts as compared to using ladders or scaffolds. The findings of this study provide detailed information directly from the workers about the hazards associated with drywall hanging. Results from this study will assist in focusing future research efforts on the most hazardous tasks and activities of drywall hanging.
Traumatic-injuries; Physical-stress; Physical-properties; Physical-capacity; Occupational-exposure; Occupational-hazards; Occupational-accidents; Injury-prevention; Injuries; Accident-prevention; Accidents; Manual-lifting; Manual-materials-handling; Materials-handling; Author Keywords: Drywall installation; Traumatic injuries; Physical stress; Fall injury; Struck by and against objects
Division of Safety Research, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, 1095 Willowdale Road, Morgantown, WV 26505, USA
Publication Date
Document Type
Journal Article
Funding Type
Fiscal Year
Identifying No.
Issue of Publication
NIOSH Division
Priority Area
Research Tools and Approaches: Exposure Assessment Methods
Source Name
International Journal of Industrial Ergonomics
Performing Organization
West Virginia University, Morgantown, West Virginia
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division