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The estimated national burden of physical ergonomic hazards among US workers.
Am J Ind Med. 2011 May; 54(5):395-404.AJ

Abstract

PURPOSE

To estimate the national burden of physical ergonomic hazards among working adults in the US.

METHODS

We estimated the population prevalence of and the total number of workers who are exposed to physical ergonomic hazards, such as vibration, working in cramped space, kneeling, body bending or twisting, climbing, and repetitive motions using Occupational Information Network (O*NET) data and the Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) stratified by occupation title.

RESULTS

Repetitive motion was the most prevalent of all ergonomic hazards (27% of US workers are estimated to be exposed continually). Bending or twisting of the body more than half their time at work was also common, involving over 32 million US workers (25% of US workforce). Kneeling, crouching, stooping, or crawling was another ergonomic hazard that 14 million US workers perform more than half their time at work. Almost 4 million workers climb ladders, scaffolds, poles, etc. for more than half their time at work. We estimate that over 13 million workers (10% of US workforce) were exposed to cramped workspace that requires getting into awkward positions every day. Finally, about 3.5 million workers (2.7% of US workforce) were estimated to be exposed to whole body vibration every day.

CONCLUSION

A large portion of the US work force is exposed to ergonomic hazards known to be associated with musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs). The occupations with the highest prevalence of each ergonomic hazard may be deserving of prompt efforts toward prevention of MSDs.

Authors+Show Affiliations

National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, Cincinnati, Ohio 45226, USA. stak@cdc.govNo affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article

Language

eng

PubMed ID

20721968

Citation

Tak, Sangwoo, and Geoffrey M. Calvert. "The Estimated National Burden of Physical Ergonomic Hazards Among US Workers." American Journal of Industrial Medicine, vol. 54, no. 5, 2011, pp. 395-404.
Tak S, Calvert GM. The estimated national burden of physical ergonomic hazards among US workers. Am J Ind Med. 2011;54(5):395-404.
Tak, S., & Calvert, G. M. (2011). The estimated national burden of physical ergonomic hazards among US workers. American Journal of Industrial Medicine, 54(5), 395-404. https://doi.org/10.1002/ajim.20883
Tak S, Calvert GM. The Estimated National Burden of Physical Ergonomic Hazards Among US Workers. Am J Ind Med. 2011;54(5):395-404. PubMed PMID: 20721968.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - The estimated national burden of physical ergonomic hazards among US workers. AU - Tak,Sangwoo, AU - Calvert,Geoffrey M, Y1 - 2010/08/18/ PY - 2010/07/01/accepted PY - 2010/8/20/entrez PY - 2010/8/20/pubmed PY - 2011/8/5/medline SP - 395 EP - 404 JF - American journal of industrial medicine JO - Am J Ind Med VL - 54 IS - 5 N2 - PURPOSE: To estimate the national burden of physical ergonomic hazards among working adults in the US. METHODS: We estimated the population prevalence of and the total number of workers who are exposed to physical ergonomic hazards, such as vibration, working in cramped space, kneeling, body bending or twisting, climbing, and repetitive motions using Occupational Information Network (O*NET) data and the Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) stratified by occupation title. RESULTS: Repetitive motion was the most prevalent of all ergonomic hazards (27% of US workers are estimated to be exposed continually). Bending or twisting of the body more than half their time at work was also common, involving over 32 million US workers (25% of US workforce). Kneeling, crouching, stooping, or crawling was another ergonomic hazard that 14 million US workers perform more than half their time at work. Almost 4 million workers climb ladders, scaffolds, poles, etc. for more than half their time at work. We estimate that over 13 million workers (10% of US workforce) were exposed to cramped workspace that requires getting into awkward positions every day. Finally, about 3.5 million workers (2.7% of US workforce) were estimated to be exposed to whole body vibration every day. CONCLUSION: A large portion of the US work force is exposed to ergonomic hazards known to be associated with musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs). The occupations with the highest prevalence of each ergonomic hazard may be deserving of prompt efforts toward prevention of MSDs. SN - 1097-0274 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/20721968/The_estimated_national_burden_of_physical_ergonomic_hazards_among_US_workers_ L2 - https://doi.org/10.1002/ajim.20883 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -