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OFFICE ERGONOMICS o o o UNC - Charlotte Safety and Environmental Health Department King Building – 1 st Floor
COURSE OBJECTIVES o o o Understand the definition of ergonomics Understand Primary Causes of Cumulative Trauma Disorders (CTDs). Understand ways to prevent CTDs Learn about PC workstation accessories to reduce computer work stress Basic exercises to reduce / relieve ergostress.
DEFINITION o ERGONOMICS is a way of working smarter--not harder by designing tools, equipment, work stations and tasks that allow a job to fit the worker and NOT by fitting the worker to the job: n n n Layout / type of controls & displays Lighting & Temperature Process (Heights, reaches, weights)
WHY WORRY ? o o Work Related Musculoskeletal Disorders (WMSDs) are fastest-growing injury/illness category (accounting for over 1. 8 million annual lost workday cases in 1997 BLS stats). Up 600% over last 11 years $13 to 20 billion total injury cost / year & average $29 K / case compensation claim cost More lost workdays for Repetitive Stress Injuries (RSI’s) (avg = 30 days for a Carpal Tunnel injury)
MSD INJURY DATA o o 600, 000 MSDs require time off from work. Women suffer more ergonomic injuries due to: n jobs requiring more heavy lifting, repetitive movement while completing tasks and awkward postures and as a result account for: o o 70% of Carpal Tunnel 62% of Tendonitis
CAR COST IS (PARTIALLY)--A PAIN IN THE BACK !! o According to Dr. E. W. Simmons, president of the American Back Society, medical costs related to back injuries can add up to $1, 800 to the price of every car made in Detroit!
CTD INJURY FACTORS o o CTD Injuries cause Lesions to tendons of the neck, back, shoulders, arms, wrists or hands Primary causes: n Repetitive movements over long periods of time n Awkward postures n Use of excessive forces
CTD RISK CONTROL: POSTURE o NEUTRAL & COMFORTABLE: n Wrists straight n Shoulders relaxed with elbows close to body n head / shoulders & back in vertical alignment n Feet flat on floor n Frequent breaks when bent postures can’t be avoided
ERGONOMIC ALIGNMENT o Proper tool alignment illustrated – note wrist and elbow positioning
CARPAL TUNNEL SYNDROME o o Up to 15% occurrence rate in certain industries. A natural occurrence with repetitive motion of hands & wrists -- especially with high force levels and awkward wrist positioning. Proper keyboard positioning and good wrist support can help most PC users avoid problems GOOD NEWS: rates have dropped about 30% since 1990 -- which most attribute to strong workplace ergonomics programs
CTD RISK CONTROL: REPETITION o o Use automatic tools for repetitive tasks (screw and bolt tightening) Eliminate unnecessary tasks / movements by redesigning maintenance procedures and workstations Take short, frequent breaks Alternate tasks and processes to use different muscle groups
ERGONOMICS SUMMARY o o o Good ergonomic design of tools, processes and furniture can markedly improve personnel comfort, health, morale, and productivity. Individual effort as part of a departmental workshop team is the greatest means of identifying / improving workplace ergonomic issues. It’s critical to seek prompt medical aid for symptoms of ergonomic stress / CTDs.
Computer Ergonomics o o Routine PC user is defined as a person spending 20 hours or more per week working at a computer. Studies of PC users have not shown a risk of eye damage. . . although fatigue is quite possible during extended usage. NIOSH studies have not indicated a radiation hazard nor pregnancy risk from PC usage. Workers using bi/tri-focal glasses that use a PC may need special purpose glasses for computer work that keep eyes/head on level plane.
ERGONOMIC KEYBOARDS o o Three types: Fixed split, Adjustable split & “Sculptured” Awkward wrist postures minimized with 15 to 25 horizontal degree key split AND 8 to 66 degree vertical incline. Key Layout Design Changes Have: n increased comfort (81% of users) n improved postures n reduced muscle activity n lowered carpal tunnel pressure in lab settings Obtained primarily to alleviate an injury
WRIST RESTS o o o No medical evidence that they reduce RSI injuries. They work for some, but not for others Usage Guidelines: n Buy rest that is even with top of keyboard n Material should be “medium-soft” (foam--gel mix) so foam doesn’t break down. AVOID hard plastic types n DON’T leave wrists on rest. . . which compresses carpal tunnel. Palm rest instead. n Changing typing habits more critical than wrist support n MOST APPROPRIATELY USED TO REST HANDS DURING PAUSE IN TYPING LEARN TO TYPE CORRECTLY WITH “FLOATING WRISTS” FIRST!!!
Ergonomic chairs o o Adjustable back height Adjustable arm rests Adjustable Seat Pan Tilt and Height to accommodate user body type Note: Chair on left is NOT ergonomically designed – it is equipped with fixed arm rests and nonadjustable back and seat pan height
Alternative Pointing Devices o o Track-balls “Scrolling” Mouse
Other Ergonomic PC Accessories o o Height-adjustable articulating keyboard tray – controls height and tilt adjustments, allows proper keyboard positioning for many different body types. 3 M model AKT 100 shown above is a good example of a well made keyboard tray.
Ergonomically Incorrect PC Station Design
Ergonomically Correct PC Station Design
Model Computer Workstation o Keyboard trays WITH wrist support. o Split "Natural" keyboards to facilitate neutral wrist angle o Fully adjustable ergonomic chair o Document holder to minimize head / eye & neck movements o Corner desk units to position monitor directly in front of employee o Foot rest where requested. o Re-organization of working materials within employee arm reach. o Alternative pointing devices (e. g. , scrolling mouse or trackball devices
Questions ? ? . . . Contact S & EH o o o Workplace ergonomic assessments will be provided by Safety and Environmental Health Dept upon request. S, & EH phone extension – 4279 HAVE A SAFE AND HEALTHY DAY