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Evaluation of the Relationship between Workload and Work Capacity in Petrochemical and Tannery Workers - A Pilot Study

Author(s): DV Siva Priya

Journal: Life Sciences and Medicine Research
ISSN 1948-7886

Volume: 2010;
Start page: LSMR-19;
Date: 2010;
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Keywords: Musculoskeletal disorders | Work related musculoskeletal disorders | Workload | Work capacity | Manual workers | Petrochemical industry | Tannery industry

Industrial accidents and musculoskeletal disorders are one of the common health risks seen among workers. They constitute the most important cause of absence due to illness and occupational disabilities. Daily occurrences of such accidents can be attributed to human error. The cause is often a poor and inadequate relationship between operators and their tasks. The probability of accidents can be reduced by taking better account of human capabilities and limitations when designing and assigning work. Individuals should be accomplished to their tasks without undue fatigue so that at the end of the working day they are left with sufficient vigor to enjoy their leisure time. The results of this research should enhance the ability to design jobs by considering the actual capacity of the employee and result in maximizing performance (quantity and quality). This study was designed to assess the work capacity of manual workers in two different occupational sectors and compare it with their workload. The workers were recruited from petrochemical and tannery industries. The results of this study showed a high prevalence of MSD among the workers in petrochemical and tannery industries. Workload of all the subjects studied was heavy and work capacity of more than half of the workers were below that was required for the job. The low endurance time of majority of workers indicates that they were easily prone for fatigability. As injuries are largely preventable by improvements to make work safer and healthier, proper recruitment of workers, administrative policies, health and safety information and education to promote safety-conscious attitudes and behavior are needed. Hence, surveillance data must be developed to provide the basis for targeting preventive measures towards high-risk groups of workers. The identification of this burden has allowed the developed countries to focus on preventive actions at work. Our study can definitely pave way for comprehending and controlling the situation as a whole, and the change in the work structure and selection of appropriate workers can become a fruitful challenge in enterprises and societies in our country.

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