2014-09-01 12:00 - Messages

Duration of slip-resistant shoe usage and the rate of slipping in limited-service restaurants

Results from a prospective and crossover study
Several studies have indicated that slip-resistant shoes may have a positive effect on reducing the risk of slips and falls, a leading cause of injury at work. Few studies, however, have examined how duration of shoe usage affects their slip-resistance properties. This study examined the association between the duration of slip-resistant shoes usage and the self-reported rate of slipping in limited-service restaurant workers. A total of 475 workers from 36 limited-service restaurants in the USA were recruited to participate in a 12-week prospective study of workplace slipping. Of the 475 participants, 83 reported changing to a new pair of shoes at least once during the 12-week follow-up. The results show that slip-resistant shoes worn for less than six months were moderately more effective than those worn for more than six months. Changing to a new pair of shoes among those wearing slip-resistant shoes at baseline was associated with a 55% reduction in the rate of slipping (RR = 0.45, 95% CI = 0.23-0.89). Further research is needed to develop criteria for the replacement of slip-resistant shoes. Practitioner Summary: The duration of usage impacts the slip-resistance properties of slip-resistant shoes. Slip-resistant shoes worn for less than six months were moderately more effective in reducing slips than slip-resistant shoes worn for more than six months. Shoe use policies should not only encourage or require their use but also include guidance on replacing slip-resistant shoes at regular intervals.

Source: Verma SK, Zhao Z, Courtney TK, Chang WR, Lombardi DA, Huang YH, Brennan MJ, Perry MJ. Ergonomics, 2014.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00140139.2014.952348
 

Norme CSA Z195 – Chaussures de protection

Nouvelle édition
Partout au Canada, les travailleurs sont tenus de protéger leurs pieds des dangers présents sur les lieux de travail en sélectionnant des chaussures de protection certifiées par Groupe CSA et en les utilisant adéquatement. La marque CSA indique aux consommateurs que leurs chaussures ont été certifiées en fonction des normes de performance en vigueur en matière de protection.
La nouvelle édition de la norme CSA Z195 énonce les exigences relatives aux chaussures antidérapantes, dotées ou non d'autres caractéristiques de sécurité. En outre, une nouvelle catégorie en matière de protection antistatique (« super SD ») a été ajoutée à l'intention des personnes qui travaillent avec des appareils électroniques et des instruments sensibles.

Source: http://shop.csa.ca/fr/canada/protective-footwear/z195-14/invt/27015092014

Exploratory breath analyses for assessing toxic dermal exposures of firefighters during suppression of structural burns

Firefighters wear fireproof clothing and self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA) during rescue and fire suppression activities to protect against acute effects from heat and toxic chemicals. Fire services are also concerned about long-term health outcomes from chemical exposures over a working lifetime, in particular about low-level exposures that might serve as initiating events for adverse outcome pathways (AOP) leading to cancer. As part of a larger US National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) study of dermal exposure protection from safety gear used by the City of Chicago firefighters, we collected pre- and post-fire fighting breath samples and analyzed for single-ring and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons as bioindicators of occupational exposure to gas-phase toxicants. Under the assumption that SCBA protects completely against inhalation exposures, any changes in the exhaled profile of combustion products were attributed to dermal exposures from gas and particle penetration through the protective clothing. Two separate rounds of firefighting activity were performed each with 15 firefighters per round. Exhaled breath samples were collected onto adsorbent tubes and analyzed with gas-chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS) with a targeted approach using selective ion monitoring. We found that single ring aromatics and some PAHs were statistically elevated in post-firefighting samples of some individuals, suggesting that fire protective gear may allow for dermal exposures to airborne contaminants. However, in comparison to a previous occupational study of Air Force maintenance personnel where similar compounds were measured, these exposures are much lower suggesting that firefighters' gear is very effective. This study suggests that exhaled breath sampling and analysis for specific targeted compounds is a suitable method for assessing systemic dermal exposure in a simple and non-invasive manner.

Source: Pleil JD, Stiegel MA, Fent KW. J. Breath Res. 2014.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1088/1752-7155/8/3/037107

Graphical fault tree analysis for fatal falls in the construction industry

The current study applied a fault tree analysis to represent the causal relationships among events and causes that contributed to fatal falls in the construction industry. Four hundred and eleven work-related fatalities in the Taiwanese construction industry were analyzed in terms of age, gender, experience, falling site, falling height, company size, and the causes for each fatality. Given that most fatal accidents involve multiple events, the current study coded up to a maximum of three causes for each fall fatality. After the Boolean algebra and minimal cut set analyses, accident causes associated with each falling site can be presented as a fault tree to provide an overview of the basic causes, which could trigger fall fatalities in the construction industry. Graphical icons were designed for each falling site along with the associated accident causes to illustrate the fault tree in a graphical manner. A graphical fault tree can improve inter-disciplinary discussion of risk management and the communication of accident causation to first line supervisors.

Source: Chi CF, Lin SZ, Dewi RS. Accid. Anal. Prev. 2014; 72C: 359-369.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.aap.2014.07.019

Effects of foot placement, hand positioning, age and climbing biodynamics on ladder slip outcomes

Ladder falls frequently cause severe injuries; yet the factors that influence ladder slips/falls are not well understood. This study aimed to quantify (1) the effects of restricted foot placement, hand positioning, climbing direction and age on slip outcomes, and (2) differences in climbing styles leading to slips versus styles leading to non-slips. Thirty-two occupational ladder users from three age groups (18-24, 25-44 and 45-64 years) were unexpectedly slipped climbing a vertical ladder, while being assigned to different foot placement conditions (unrestricted vs. restricted toe clearance) and different hand positions (rails vs. rungs). Constraining foot placement increased the climber's likelihood of slipping (p < 0.01), while younger and older participants slipped more than the middle-aged group (p < 0.01). Longer double stance time, dissimilar and more variable foot and body positioning were found in styles leading to a slip. Maintaining sufficient toe clearance and targeting ladder safety training to younger and older workers may reduce ladder falls. Practitioner Summary: Ladder falls frequently cause severe occupational fall injuries. This study aims to identify safer ladder climbing techniques and individuals at risk of falling. The results suggest that ladders with unrestricted toe clearance and ladder climbing training programmes, particularly for younger and older workers, may reduce ladder slipping risk.

Source: Pliner EM, Campbell-Kyureghyan NH, Beschorner KE. Ergonomics, 2014.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00140139.2014.943681

Contribution of gait parameters and available coefficient of friction to perceptions of slipperiness

Perceived slipperiness rating (PSR) has been widely used to assess walkway safety. In this experiment, 29 participants were exposed to 5 floor types under dry, wet and glycerol conditions. The relationship between their PSR and objective measurements, including utilized coefficient of friction (UCOF), gait kinematics and available coefficient of friction (ACOF), was explored with a regression analysis using step-wise backward elimination. The results showed that UCOF and ACOF, as well as their difference, were the major predictors of the PSR under wet and glycerol conditions. Under wet conditions, the participants appeared to rely on the potential for foot slip to form their PSR. Under glycerol conditions, some kinematic variables also became major predictors of PSR. The results show how different proprioceptive responses and ACOF contributed to the prediction of PSR under different surface conditions.

Source: Chang WR, Lesch MF, Chang CC, Matz S. Gait Posture, 2014.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.gaitpost.2014.08.010

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