Workplace Ergonomics and Caster Technology Blog

AEC 2019 Highlights

AEC 2019 Highlights

The Darcor team just returned from AEC 2019 and we wanted to share some highlights. The show seems to be getting bigger every year, with a lot of first-time attendees this year. There were over 60 Exhibitor booths and 48 Ergo cup teams. There was a strong focus as always around the ergonomic benefits of carts and casters with 8 presentations focusing on the topics of push/pulls forces, and carts and casters ergonomics. The Ergo Cup once again demonstrated how simple, cost effective, worker driven solutions can have a significant impact on the ergonomics of a work task while also contributing to production efficiencies and other ROIs. Attendees were very interested in Darcor's display on the debris rejecting capabilities of our Neoprene wheels, as well our capability to design ergonomic systems like the central brake and Zephyr. There was a lot of discussion around the new BWC push/pull tool developed from the research done by OSU (SRI), which allows user to easily determine if their push/pull task is in a acceptable force range. The tool only requires a few input parameters and outputs a simple green, yellow or red indicator to let you know the percent of the population at risk for that task. These limits were determined biomechanically using accurate models of the spine to understand how to prevent damage to the spinal disks before exceeding these thresholds. Read on to find out about the highlights from AEC 2019 Applied Ergonomics Conference including highlights from the keynote speaker, sessions, and trends.
MHI Releases Manual Materials Handling Ergonomics Video and Infographic

MHI Releases Manual Materials Handling Ergonomics Video and Infographic

MHI has just released a video and infographic about manual materials handling ergonomics. MHI is the nation’s largest material handling, logistics and supply chain association. MHI offers education, networking and solution sourcing for members, their customers and the industry as a whole through programming and events. On the infographic, MHI notes: Ergonomics is more than a buzzword today - it is a movement. Nationally, our demographics confirm we are aging and in deteriorating physical shape. This impacts the workplace, and good employers must think of their businesses in terms of ergonomics. EASE is the group within MHI focused solely on making work easier for people by improving the work environment. Get the MHI MMH Ergonomics Infographic Now!
Manufacturing Plant Experiences Up to 62% Decrease in Push/Pull Forces By Implementing Ergonomic Casters

Manufacturing Plant Experiences Up to 62% Decrease in Push/Pull Forces By Implementing Ergonomic Casters

Manufacturing/Distribution Plant Case Study – Increased Productivity & Employee Satisfaction with Ergonomic Casters. The client's overall focus was to improve workplace ergonomics. The management team choose to take steps to implement proactive ergonomics. There was concern over the risk of musculoskeletal injuries. Of particular concern was the assembly facility. They had documented that approximately 40-50% of injuries in the assembly plant resulted from musculoskeletal injuries. In addition, the goal was to also implement ergonomic solutions which would also increase efficiency and productivity.The client tested 3 different casters from 3 different vendors. Darcor's ergonomic casters reduced push pull forces significantly and received tremendous positive feedback from operators. The client tested 3 different casters from 3 different vendors. Darcor's ergonomic casters reduced push pull forces significantly and received tremendous positive feedback from operators. The switch to Darcor ergonomic caster resulted in significantly reductions in push/pull forces across the board.
Ergonomics Best Practices in the Manufacturing Industry

Ergonomics Best Practices in the Manufacturing Industry

Workers in manufacturing environments are prone to injury, especially musculoskeletal disorders. This is known as cumulative trauma disorder (CTD) and is prevalent in the manufacturing industry due to the type of day-to-day tasks completed by employees including: Repetitive actions, Awkward postures, High forces, and Exposure […]
Caster Questions & Answers from the Experts at Darcor

Caster Questions & Answers from the Experts at Darcor

we are often asked many questions about casters. The Darcor team recently presented a ErgoExpo Webinar and we got some great questions. Our team is always happy to respond to questions about casters, and we do on a daily basis. We thought that we’d pull together a list of the best caster questions and answers to share including caster topics like: • Environmental considerations, • Locking functionality, • Caster inspection and maintenance, • Number of casters, • Positioning of casters, • Caster material, • Swivelling casters, and more.
Applied Ergonomics Conference AEC 2019 Just Around the Corner - Get Ready with this Must-See List!

Applied Ergonomics Conference AEC 2019 Just Around the Corner – Get Ready with this Must-See List!

The 2019 Applied Ergo Conference (AEC) is set to run March 25 – 28, 2019 at the Hyatt Regency in New Orleans, Louisiana. This year is the 22nd annual event. As always, the Darcor team is excited to take part. The Applied Ergonomics Society (AES) is a worldwide resource for ergonomics professions dedicated to improving workplace performance, quality, sustainability and employee availability. AES supports the Annual Applied Ergonomics Conference and Expo, a conference where attendees gather from around the world to share best practices with other professionals in ergonomics, healthcare, safety, human resources and risk management. Darcor has been proud to be part of the ergonomics advancement and has developed free downloads for ergonomists and management teams seeking to reduce injuries through implementing workplace ergonomics best practices including the Guide to Workplace Ergonomics, which specifically focuses on overexertion injuries that occur in the workplace, and the Economics of Ergonomics, which helps 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 2019 approaches, we've put together a list of the must-see workshops and speakers - check them out!
Institute of Caster & Wheel Manufacturers (ICWM) & MHI Release Free Casters Snapshot Download

Institute of Caster & Wheel Manufacturers (ICWM) & MHI Release Free Casters Snapshot Download

The Institute of Caster & Wheel Manufacturers (ICWM) and MHI have just released a free download that provides a quick snapshot of casters. The download highlights what a caster is, types of caster wheel materials, caster types, benefits of casters, history of casters, interesting facts about casters, and resources and caster testing and design standards links. Get the ICWM / MHI Casters Download Now!
Push / Pull Injuries Impact the Whole Body, Not Just the Back

Push / Pull Injuries Impact the Whole Body, Not Just the Back

When we talk about pushing and pulling as potential causes of manual material handling (MMH) injuries, we tend to focus on low-back injuries. This is not without good reason; back injuries and back pain are both prevalent and expensive. Shoulders and knees are also at risk of workplace injuries due to poorly designed carts. Although less frequent, shoulder and knee workplace injuries can cost companies the same or more than back injuries.
ErgoExpo Webinar: Effective Ergonomic Design of Manual Material Handling Carts

ErgoExpo Webinar: Effective Ergonomic Design of Manual Material Handling Carts

An increasing portion of manual material handling involves pushing and pulling. Yohann Printer and Tom Albin will discuss designing carts to keep manual operating forces within safe, recommended limits to reduce risk of injury and to facilitate operational efficiency. They will also cover a new clarification of the ISO 11228-2 force measurement protocol, which is intended to facilitate direct comparison of cart design factors’ effect on operating forces. Cart design factors to be covered will include visibility, handle height, operating forces, caster selection and caster placement. Finally, you’ll hear case studies of the effectiveness of employing good ergonomics in cart design. Webinar takeaways • Illustrate how cart design impacts back and shoulder injury risk during MMH tasks • Use task analysis to understand MMH task requirements • Optimize cart designs for both the task and the user • Gain practical guidelines for cart design Register now for this free webinar!
Workplace Ergonomics: Cumulative Stress & Back Injuries

Workplace Ergonomics: Cumulative Stress & Back Injuries

Cumulative stress to the spine plays a key role in assessing risk of occupational back injuries. Back pain and back injuries cost companies in the US more than 100 billion US dollars per year, in terms of both treatment costs and in lower productivity. An effective ergonomics program that identifies and reduces all Manual Materials Handling (MMH) risk factors is a key component of any effort targeted at reducing the cost of injuries. Recently experts have suggested that, as employers recognize and reduce the risks associated with lifting, attention in MMH work has shifted towards reducing the risk associated with pushing and pulling activities. Key to the analysis of push and pull forces has been the determination of maximum acceptable forces, which have been determined by either psychophysical methods or biomechanical methods.
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