Unnatural working postures usually cause musculoskeletal problems for workers in work field, especially in traditional industry. Many analysis and survey methodologies have been developed to identify unnatural postures and disorder risks in workplaces. The Ovako Working Posture Analyzing System (OWAS) and Nordic Musculoskeletal Questionnaire (NMQ) are the representative methods and applied widely. This study applied the both tools to investigate the work field of a manufacturing factory of the water heater’s case. We divided the manufacturing process into nine workshops, took the pictures of working motions by DV camera and analyzed the postures on OWAS. From the OWAS results, we could identify the risks level of musculoskeletal symptoms as four Action Categories (AC). And from the comparison of OWAS and NMQ results, we could provide the suggestions to improve the working methods and environment. From the results of OWAS, we found that the operators) head/neck and back were above AC3 in some workshops. If the situation continued in long period, the operators might have the risk to get musculoskeletal symptoms. From the investigation of NMQ, we also found that the percentage of aches on neck, shoulders and lower back were higher than other parts of body. The correlation between aches and jobs was more than 75 per cent. So we provided some suggestions to improve: work rotation and adjustment of work surface/height to fit in with Ergonomics. Then the risks of musculoskeletal symptoms would be reduced.
Asian Journal on Quality – Emerald Publishing
Published: Apr 17, 2008
Keywords: Musculoskeletal symptoms; Job analysis; Risk evaluation; OWAS; NMQ
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