Safety in design: a proactive approach to construction worker safety and health.
Appl Occup Environ Hyg 2003 May; 18(5):339-342
Safety through design is a familiar concept to occupational hygienists. Indeed, the primacy of engineering controls in the hierarchy of controls that is fundamental to the discipline derives from the principle of safety through design. The use of ergonomic redesign to reduce risk factors for work-related musculoskeletal disorders is another prominent example of the application of this concept. Unfortunately, construction workers comprise one group of employees that has previously received limited benefit from safety through design. While architects and engineers clearly consider safety in their designs, the target of their efforts has traditionally been the end user of the facility rather than those who will construct it. This is slowly beginning to change. This article describes the current state of activity in safety through design for construction, including barriers and the efforts to overcome them. Also presented are preliminary findings from a case study of a safety-in-design effort on a large industrial construction project in which the authors are involved.
Safety-engineering; Equipment-design; Ergonomics; Human-factors-engineering; Engineering-controls; Construction; Construction-equipment; Construction-industry; Construction-workers; Control-equipment; Control-technology; Training
Steven Hecker, Labor Education and Research Center, 1289 University of Oregon, Eugene, OR 97403
Cooperative Agreement; Construction
Applied Occupational and Environmental Hygiene
The Center to Protect Workers' Rights