Last Updated: 02/28/2018
The purpose of the Injury Illness Prevention Program (IIPP) is to outline Cal Maritime's environmental health and safety requirements, expectations, and responsibilities in order to achieve effective campus safety performance through Integrated Safety Management (ISM). The Ergonomic Assessment Plan is a subject specific component the supports the overall University IIPP.
Note: Training Ship Golden Bear (TSGB) is regulated under MARAD. For operations pertaining to the TSGB - Refer to Shoreside Administration Manual (SAM) and Vessel Operations Manual (VOM).
The following guidelines are intended to help computer users understand and reduce health risks associated with computer workstations. Since no two bodies are identical, different styles, models and sizes of furniture and accessories may be needed.
During the workstation assessment, equipment adjustments (monitor height, keyboard, chair, etc.) with the employee will be made at that time. SRM will provide guides and review proper workstation set up during the assessment. Any recommendations following the assessment will be forwarded to employee's supervisor and/or manager for further corrective actions.
General guidelines for setting up a workstation are listed below.
Prevention is the key to reduce or eliminate the risk of developing a cumulative trauma disorder. Prevention includes the use of good body mechanics, good ergonomic design (engineering controls), and the use of administrative controls. Early intervention makes a difference for employees who experience symptoms such as pain, numbness, tingling, or tenderness in the fingers, hands, arms, or muscle pain in the back, shoulders, or other parts of the body from lifting or other body motions. It is important for employees to report early signs and symptoms of work-related CTDs to their manager and/or supervisor and to follow up with SRM for evaluation.
Using good body posture is important for minimizing the risk of developing a CTD. Equipment, tools, and furniture are an important part of the work environment. Since frequent use of these items does have a significant impact on job performance and overall health, good body posture is essential when equipment, tools, and furniture are used.
Engineering control measures should be addressed as the first line of defense to eliminate or reduce ergonomic hazards that employees are exposed to. It is important to design out the problem when this approach is feasible.
Although not recognized as an effective means of controlling hazards and do not take the place of engineering or administrative controls, there are acceptable forms of PPE, which include kneepads and various types of gloves including anti-vibration.
Training provides information for mitigating ergonomic hazards, strategies to improve a workstation layout, and stress reduction exercises.
The purpose of the workstation assessment is to ensure computer users are using proper ergonomic practices at their workstation or when a computer user is experiencing some type of biomechanical stress. The assessment can help management and SRM determine which workstations and individuals should be targeted for further evaluation or additional ergonomic needs. Workstation assessments can be requested at any time, but the assessment must be authorized by the employee's supervisor/manager.
The placement zone is the area in which an employee performs most routine tasks, whether repetitive movements (e.g., typing at a keyboard) or less frequent movements (e.g., lifting). Work should be arranged to be within easy reach and usual work located within 12 inches of the employee. Frequently used materials should be located within arm's distance from the operator employee (18 inches at the maximum). Such an arrangement reduces potential stress to the back, shoulders, and arms by avoiding awkward postures and positions.
Some of the key items to consider in an ergonomic chair are:
A footrest may be necessary if the operator cannot rest his/her feet comfortably on the floor.
When ergonomics is applied at an industrial work area (e.g., workshops, labs, and equipment repair areas) it is referred to as "Industrial Ergonomics." It can encompass all other workstations except a general office workstation. The CTD risk factors are still relevant, only the setting is different. As mentioned previously, good body posture should always be employed to minimize muscle tension and body strain.
Manual material handling involves sitting, lifting, lowering, and carrying objects; it may also involve getting up and down from a standing position. All of these movements involve using the back. To avoid the risk of developing back problems, ergonomic principles should be applied while using the back. If ergonomics is ignored, daily stresses on the muscles, joints, and disks in the back can eventually cause a CTD in the back. For objects that are too heavy or bulky for safe manual handling by employees, mechanical lifting devices must be used for lifting and moving.
To minimize the risk of developing a CTD in the back, employees should follow these guidelines:
The maximum weight of the load that can be handled will vary for each employee.
Improper hand tool selection or improper use of tools can cause CTDs. Hand tools should fit the employee's hand; employees with small hands or who are left-handed may need tools designed specifically for these situations. Hand and wrist posture are important because they affect how much force the muscles must produce to hold objects. When selecting and purchasing hand tools, these guidelines should be followed:
Ergonomic equipment recommended as a result of an ergonomic assessment conducted by SRM department will be approved and purchased by the employee's department. Ergonomic equipment purchased will be the property of the department that purchased the equipment.
As part of the ergonomic workstation evaluation procedure, SRM will initially evaluate the employee's current equipment including, but not limited to chair, keyboard, articulating keyboard tray, headset and/or ancillary equipment. In some cases, the employee may have been issued ergonomic or adjustable equipment that may need to be properly adjusted for fit and function and not replaced.
Ergonomic equipment, both industrial and clerical, inherently due to technical advancements and engineering costs, is more often than not, expensive. It is for this reason that this type of equipment will not be purchased without management review and approval and after an ergonomic workstation assessment has been conducted. Ergonomic equipment will not be recommended for replacement or purchase for any of the following rationales:
All work related injuries or symptoms are managed through the Workers' Compensation Manager in Human Resources. Human Resources can provide guidance to supervisors who have an employee who is under doctor care in order to ensure employees do not aggravate the medical condition. Managers will also ensure corrective actions at the workstation have been implemented to prevent such injuries or symptoms from reoccurring.
Cal Maritime and its subcontractors shall comply with the following requirements.
In case of conflict or overlap of the below references, the most stringent provision shall apply.
Training Modules & Resources
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