Workplace Ergonomics and Caster Technology Blog

Healthcare Ergonomics - Caring Enough to Prevent Injury to Those Who Care for Us

Healthcare Ergonomics – Caring Enough to Prevent Injury to Those Who Care for Us

Healthcare workers are dedicated providers of care for people in need around the globe. Unfortunately, in the course of their jobs, they are exposed to a variety of risks and hazards ranging from hazardous materials to work-related musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs). According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, healthcare worker injuries are a serious issue to be addressed. …employees in nursing and personal care facilities suffer over 200,000 work-related injuries and illnesses a year. Many of these are serious injuries. More than half require time away from work. Worker's compensation costs for the industry now amount to nearly $1 billion per year. Workers in nursing homes are 2x as likely as other workers to be injured on the job. United States Department of Labor – Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) Given their commitment to the well-being of their patients, it’s all that more important that they are provided with protection from injuries. While not all injuries are unavoidable, there are methods of reducing risk of injury to these valuable healthcare providers. Read on for Healthcare Ergonomics Best Practices and Resources...
Industrial Ergonomic Best Practices in Cart Design

Industrial Ergonomic Best Practices in Cart Design

When designing industrial carts for manual material handling (MMH), a primary goal of an industrial ergonomist is to reduce the risk of musculoskeletal injuries by keeping the forces required to start, stop and maneuver the cart within recommended safe limits. There are many facets of industrial cart design to consider to keeping cart operating forces within recommended limits – we’ll focus on the two many aspects. Industrial cart handle placement and caster selection/placement are crucial to support industrial ergonomics and reduce workplace injuries.
Current MMH Evaluations may Underestimate Risk from Push and Pull Forces

Current MMH Evaluations may Underestimate Risk from Push and Pull Forces

Current methods of assessing push pull forces in industrial ergonomics are useful, but they need further development as they likely overestimate the safety of push and pull task forces. Back injuries remain one of the most-costly of all occupational injuries. It is estimated that about 10 percent of adults experience back pain severe enough to limit their productivity 25 days or more per year and that workplace lost-time back injuries cost businesses about $460 per employee per year. The physical stresses created by Manual Materials Handling (MMH) are known to play a causal role in back pain and injury, and studies by Snook and Marras et al have shown that using ergonomic analyses of MMH stresses to design reduced-stress MMH jobs reduces the number of injuries that occur. MMH tasks such as manually moving carts are composites of multiple elements: starting movement, sustaining movement, turning, and stopping. Each element applies stress to the individual who exerts forces to perform the task. Risk analysis of MMH such as cart handling must consider the stress created by all the elements of a task, not just starting and sustaining movement. When all MMH elements of a task are considered, the safe forces are likely lower than current assessment techniques suggest.
MHI Solutions Recent Issue Focuses on Ergonomic Industrial Cart and Caster Solutions

MHI Solutions Recent Issue Focuses on Ergonomic Industrial Cart and Caster Solutions

MHI Solutions Magazine recently published an article written by Jean Feingold which focused on ergonomic industrial cart and caster solutions. The article highlights some often overlooked cart and caster ergonomic considerations in the manual material handling industry. Feingold interviewed some leaders in the field of industrial ergonomics including Terry Parmelee of Kinetic Technologies and Lui Dilauro of Darcor Limited, Read on to check out the highlights and read the complete article.
New Methods for Assessing Risks Needed in Industrial Ergonomics

New Methods for Assessing Risks Needed in Industrial Ergonomics

Identifying musculoskeletal injury risk factors associated with MMH is an important component of any industrial ergonomics program that targets the reduction of workplace injuries. MMH tasks are often compound tasks or aggregates of several different tasks. For example, an MMH task might consist of loading boxes onto a cart, pushing the cart to a first location, maneuvering the cart around corners, unloading a few boxes, pushing the cart to a second location, and unloading or loading boxes there. Compound MMH patterns of this type are routinely seen in industrial workplaces. Currently, separate tools are used to individually evaluate each simple component of MMH tasks, such as each instance of lifting, carrying, pushing, and pulling. Applying the tools to a compound task yields several separate risk assessments, e.g. one for the lifting component and another for the pushing component. How should the combination of these individual analyses be evaluated to estimate the risk of injury for the compound task which includes multiple tasks, e.g. both lifting and pushing?
Trending at AEC 2018: Proactive Ergonomics and Leveraging Technologies for Better Workplace Ergonomics

Trending at AEC 2018: Proactive Ergonomics and Leveraging Technologies for Better Workplace Ergonomics

AEC 2018 Highlights Include the ROI of Ergonomics, Creative Improvements to Support Workplace Ergonomics and a Closer Look at Push Pull Guidelines The team from Darcor recently returned from the 2018 Applied Ergo Conference (AEC) in late March in Atlanta. As always, the AEC brought together the greatest minds in the field of ergonomics. These ergonomists and engineers attend the AEC to get the opportunity to cross-pollinate ideas, policies, technologies, advancements in the field of ergonomics. The 2018 AEC was no exception with booths, presentations, exhibits, success stories and the Ergo Cup® Awards all serving the purpose of advancing ergonomics to support reduction in injuries. Read on to find out about ergonomic trends, Ergo Cup awards, and presentation highlights from AEC 2018
Get Ready for AEC 2018!

Get Ready for AEC 2018!

The 2018 Applied Ergo Conference (AEC) is set to run March 26 – 29, 2018 at the Hilton in Atlanta, Georgia. As always, the Darcor team is ready to be inspired by the exciting keynote speakers and workshops. For more than a decade, the Global Organization of Ergonomics (GOErgo) has been bringing ergonomic considerations to the forefront for businesses. More than ever, organizations have become more focused on injury prevention and reducing workplace related fatigue. AEC continues to lead the charge on proactive ergonomics assessment and solutions. Darcor has been proud to be part of the ergonomics progression and has developed the Economics of Ergonomics Guide which will help organizations truly understand the financial risks associated with workplace overexertion injuries and how to assess and reduce that risk by implementing proactive ergonomics programs. As AEC 2018 approaches, the Darcor team has compiled a list of the workshops and speakers we’re most looking forward to see:
Economics of Ergonomics Guide Now Available to Support Cost Justification for Crucial Ergonomic Solutions

Economics of Ergonomics Guide Now Available to Support Cost Justification for Crucial Ergonomic Solutions

Workplace ergonomics thought leader, Darcor Casters and Wheels, is pleased to introduce the Economics of Ergonomics Guide. The free 14-page download will help organizations truly understand the financial risks associated with workplace overexertion injuries and how to assess and reduce that risk by implementing proactive ergonomics programs. Overexertion injuries, including those related to pushing and pulling, are the costliest of workplace injuries. It is critical to manage the financial risk of workplace overexertion injuries in the manual material handling industry. It is estimated that organizations can expect to save $460 USD a year per worker by ensuring that push pull peak forces are consistently at an acceptable level. The Economics of Ergonomics Guide covers a variety of crucial areas that all organizations involved in manual material handling should be well-versed on to ensure reduced risk of workplace overexertion injuries and related costs. Download the guide now!
Lean Manufacturing: Creating the Conversation for Change

Lean Manufacturing: Creating the Conversation for Change

By Scott Smith | Continuous Improvement | February 20th, 2018 | Comments (0)
A lean management system creates alignment to a common purpose, creates transparency on what the organization’s problems are, and engages all employees through active involvement in solving the organization’s roadblocks to achieve their purpose. Lean manufacturing and continuous improvement go hand-in-hand. To start their lean journey, Darcor established both production planning and performance control boards in primary production areas. The performance control boards provide teams with measures that support the organization’s strategic direction and a method to solve problems. To be effective, the lean management system needs an operating rhythm that creates conversations and transparency on what is important and encourages accountability and action. Darcor’s team is better aligned to move at the speed that is required to maintain high levels of customer satisfaction. The climate for the organization has improved and the culture has transformed to recognize and encourage active problem solvers in the operations environment.
Industrial Ergonomics: Best Practices for Cart Management

Industrial Ergonomics: Best Practices for Cart Management

Manual material handling using carts is a prime example of an occupational push and pull task. Managing the risk associated with pushing, pulling and maneuvering carts in the workplace is a critical component of an industrial ergonomics program. As most facilities or organizations have fleets of carts, a systematic approach is useful in managing and reducing the risks associated with cart handling. While such a system will vary to suit the idiosyncrasies of different operations, there are some common components to these ergonomics cart management programs. So, what are some best practices for cart ergonomics?
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