Lifting and carrying heavy loads occur frequently among ironworkers and result in high prevalence and incidence rates of low back complaints, injuries and work-disability. From a health perspective, little information is available on the effect of team lifting on work demands and workload. Therefore, the objective of this study was to compare the effects of team lifting of maximally 50 kg by two ironworkers (T50) with team lifting of maximally 100 kg by four ironworkers (T100). This study combined a field and laboratory study with the following outcome measures: duration and frequency of tasks and activities, energetic workload, perceived discomfort and maximal compression forces (Fc peak) on the low back. The physical work demands and workload of an individual iron worker during manual handling of rebar materials of 100 kg with four workers did not differ from the manual handling of rebar materials of 50 kg with two workers, with the exception of low back discomfort and Fc peak. The biomechanical workload of the low back exceeded for both T50 and T100 the NIOSH threshold limit of 3400N. Therefore, mechanical transport or other effective design solutions should be considered to reduce the biomechanical workload of the low back and the accompanying health risks among iron workers. © 2012 - IOS Press and the authors. All rights reserved.
|Journal||Work: A Journal of Prevention, Assessment and Rehabilitation|
|Publication status||Published - 2012|