2013-09-01 12:00 - Messages

Model of safety inspection

Safety inspection is a common element of safety management systems but has been subject to little scholarly research. A naturalistic study conducted in the amusement ride inspection domain identified key features of the task and derived a model fitting the inspection process independent of experience. A survey extended to two additional safety inspection domains supported the central features of the task description including generalist assignment of safety inspectors, high complexity, consecutive use of checklists, risk-informed decision making, and lack of performance feedback. Inspectors adapted to differences in knowledge and familiarity by using strategies to resolve uncertainty, including search for permissive sources and distributed cognition. The model provides a framework for development of strategies to support inspectors and to aid novice knowledge acquisition.

Source : Kathryn Woodcock. Safety Science, Vol. 62, February 2014, p. 145-156. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ssci.2013.08.021.

IWH 2012 Annual Report focuses on vulnerable workers

September 10—The Institute for Work & Health's 2012 Annual Report is now available. It profiles our continued commitment to research on the prevention of work injury and disability among vulnerable workers.

Source : http://www.iwh.on.ca/annual-report

Reproductive hazards literature search: Summary - RR979

The aim of this work was to establish a current picture of the main documented factors that may be associated with reproductive health, relevant to UK workers. The approach taken was to assess published reviews of literature on reproductive health and gender for workers in the UK, including chemical hazards and risks, as well as other factors. A limited number of papers were identified in this literature search. From these, a number of occupational exposures or risks were found to have been well-documented as being an issue to both male and female reproductive outcomes. These include exposure to chemicals, exposure to radiation, heavy workload, heat, awkward/ sedentary postures, irregular work schedules, and psychosocial work stress. The reviews also acknowledge there are probably a variety of other substances or risks where the impact of exposure on reproductive health is currently unknown, and are therefore not well-documented in the literature. This is due to the changing nature of workplaces and new technologies. The evidence for some of the risks is also not conclusive in the literature e.g. stress, heat and posture, as it is sometimes not possible to directly link occupational exposures to reproductive outcomes without removing other factors such as lifestyle and genetics.

Source : http://www.hse.gov.uk/research/rrpdf/rr979.pdf

A review of risk factors of accidental slips, trips, and falls among firefighters

This review covers the incidence and financial cost of slips, trips and falls among firefighters. The physical factors that may be related to slip, trip, or fall-related accidents are summarized by their intrinsic (balance, age, experience, muscular strength and fitness, body mass, fatigue) and extrinsic (equipment, reduced vision, surface condition, heat) nature. Much of the evidence relating risk factors to accidental falls in the fire service is weak or anecdotal. There is a need to reduce occupational risk factors leading to slips, trips, and physical injury during firefighting operations given the serious consequences of falls in the fire service. Further study is required to identify critical factors that cause these accidents, develop screening tests, and plan appropriate interventions.

Source : Pui W. Kong, Joe Suyama, David Hostler. Safety Science, Vol. 60, December 2013, p. 203-209. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ssci.2013.07.016.

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