ERGONOMIC SURVIVAL GUIDE FOR
This SURVIVAL GUIDE is designed to promote awareness of safe work practices for ELECTRICIANS. To order this guide and other trade-specific publications, please call 1-800-963-9424 or download a pdf or html version from the Web site http://www.dir.ca.gov/dosh/puborder.asp
What will happen to your family and your lifestyle if you get injured and can't work? What will you lose if you get injured?
� Your salary
|Most common injuries:
There are certain things in your job that can lead to fatigue, discomfort, or pain when you do them
repeatedly or for long periods of time. These include:
Stretch the Lower Back and Hips
Stretch each Arm and Shoulders
Stretch each Leg
While you are off work, keep yourself physically ready for returning to work whether it's the next day or later.
If you experience symptoms, you must change the way you work or the tools you use. If you don't change, your symptoms may get worse and keep you from working at all.
You may have a problem if you have any of these symptoms:
� Constant fatigue
� Cold hands
� Lack of energy
� Changes in skin color
� Loss of sensation
� Aching, burning, or shooting pain
If you develop any symptoms:
� Talk with your supervisor about your symptoms right away.
� Work with your foreman or supervisor to identify the cause of the problem.
� Follow your company's ergonomics program and its Injury and Illness Prevention Program.
� Always look for better ways to do your job.
THE WRONG WAY
THE SAFER WAY
Repetitious hand work may cause pain and result in permanent injury, limiting your ability to use your hands in any kind of work.
� Use hand tools or power tools whenever possible.
Lifting, pulling, pushing or carrying heavy loads may cause serious back injury
3 Point Lift
� Use a three-point lift when handling heavy material by youself.
The force and awkward posture required to pull wire by hands is hard and tiring.
� Avoid manual wire pulling and use a tugger or a handtool whenever possible
LIGHTEN YOUR LOAD. Plan what you are going to do. Carry only the tools or equipment you will need. Wear a tool belt that fits and distribute the tools and materials evenly.
PROTECT YOURSELF. Wear safety gear that fits. Protect your knees from hard, sharp surfaces by wearing knee pads. Wear appropriate eye protection to protect your eyes from debris and flying particles. Protect your hands from friction and sharp edges by wearing gloves.
SELECT THE RIGHT TOOL. Choose tools that fit your hand comfortably and have soft grips. A good handle grip prevents your hand from slipping while using the tool. Consider using tools that reduce the amount of force or movements you use. Keep tools well maintained.
PRACTICE GOOD HOUSEKEEPING. Pick up debris and scrap material to prevent trips, slips, and falls. Good housekeeping allows you and your equipment to get closer to your work.
CHANGE BODY POSITIONS. Working overhead, at floor level, or in cramped spaces forces the body into awkward postures. To relieve muscle tension and improve circulation, change body positions, alternate tasks, and stretch throughout the day.
KEEP THE LOAD OR TOOL CLOSE TO YOUR BODY
Carrying a 10 lb. object that is 25" from your spine is equal to 250 lbs. of force on your lower back.
LIFT SMART: Keep loads and tools close to your body. The farther the load or tool is from your spine, the greater the force on your lower back.
Carrying a 10 lb. object that is 10" from your spine is equal to 100 lbs. of force on your lower back.
AVOID HEAT ILLNESS:
� Start work early in the day. Avoid extreme heat.
� Wear light-colored and loose-fitting clothing.
� Take frequent breaks in the shade.
� Drink water frequently before, during, and even after work. Drink water even if you are not thirsty.
Heat illness can cause fatigue, dizziness and painful muscle cramps.
REMEMBER: HEAT ILLNESS CAN KILL IN LESS THAN ONE HOUR OF EXPOSURE TO EXTREME HEAT!
Cal/OSHA Consultation Service
Research and Education Unit
Writers and Editors
Page Layout and Design
We thank the following people for their support and assistance in the research and development of this guide:
Jim Albers - NIOSH
Joanette Alpert - Woodward, Alpert & Associates
Liz Arioto - Wentz Group
Dave C. Bare - Cal/OSHA Consultation Service
RJ Banks - State Compensation Insurance Fund
Mario Feletto - Cal/OSHA Research and Education Unit
John Howard - NIOSH
Ira Janowitz - UC Berkeley/ San Francisco
Cay Cay Lawrence - Electrician
Patty Dickey May - Joe Dickey Electric
Bert Mazeau - Rosendin Electric
Ed Murphy - Electrical Joint Apprenticeship and and Training Committee of Santa Clara County
IBEW/NECA - Sacramento Area Electrical Apprenticeship
Jeff Silva - Frank Electric
Scott Schneider - Laborers' Health & Safety Fund of N. America
Dave Strickler - Cal/OSHA Consultation Service
Marti Stroup - AGC California
Randi Voss - Rex Moore
Tom Waters - NIOSH
Cal/OSHA Consultation Programs
Toll Free - 1-800-963-9424
Internet - http://www.dir.ca.gov/dosh
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