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Five Things to Know about Ergonomics in the Workplace

- by Christina Hryniuk

What is Ergonomics?

Ergonomics is the science of matching work tasks to the body. Good ergonomics introduces designs or interventions to promote safe posture and less stress on the body to help improve productivity and decrease Musculoskeletal Injury (MSI) and Musculoskeletal Disorders(MSD).

According to the Workers Compensation Board of Manitoba (WCB), almost 71 percent of time loss injuries in 2018 were related to poor ergonomics such as poor working postures, repetitive motions, excessive force etc. A dramatic leap from 2015, which was at 40 percent. According to SAFE Work, that MSI claims cost almost $38 million that year.

Hazards include poor working postures, excessive physical and cognitive demands of the worker, improper height reaching zones, lighting and temperature to name a few. A major factor in MSI and MSD’s is repetition (how long, how often).



So why is knowing about ergonomics important?

Musculoskeletal Disorders (MSDs) are something you should be worried about.

MSD’s slowly develop over time and the soft tissues in your body – nerves, tendons, muscles, ligaments, and joints – are most susceptible to MSD’s. Injuries like carpal tunnel and tendonitis (aka-tennis elbow) are key examples of MSD’s and these injuries become worse over time (repetition).

You may not take it seriously at first, but over time your discomfort will increase in severity if you keep returning to the same, strenuous activities. At some point, your body will not be able to recover. The three main factors involve force (how much you lift, push, and pull), repetition, and your body temperature. Contact stress and vibration are also common hazards that wreak havoc upon the body if left unchecked.


You need to recognise the potential risks associated with MSI hazards in your job duties

It doesn’t matter if you are a professional truck driver, dispatcher, mechanic or office employee in the Trucking industry, all workers need to be aware of the ergonomic hazards

Rotate your job tasks when possible

It helps to reduce repetitiveness and fatigue, so it goes without saying that you should be taking scheduled breaks and paying attention to fatigue levels, as these are contributing factors in how much energy you will exert in performing tasks.

If you are a manager or employer, you can implement an MSI/Ergonomics Program

As an employer you can create job descriptions that can help determine the risk factors associated with MSI/MSD’s and use it to make a decision on changes like: upgrading tools/equipment/furnishings or changing the routine involved with the tasks.

For more information on ergonomics and workplace safety training, contact us today.


 

4 Benefits of Training for CPR-C Certification

- by Christina Hryniuk

Obtaining your first aid cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) Level C certification is a valuable asset. It qualifies you to step in and make a difference in case someone needs serious help and prevent serious injuries to others around them at home, work, and in public.

If you are contemplating on getting Standard First Aid and CPR-Level C and AED certification, learn more about why it’s worth it below.

CPR Saves Lives

Most obviously, being CPR certified is that you can help save someone’s life. Most people don’t know how to react or what to do in emergencies, and that could lead to fatal consequences to those who need immediate assistance before paramedics arrive.

Reacting instantly in a life-threatening situation is vital.

In cases of cardiac arrest, performing CPR quickly is pivotal because it will prevent the situation from becoming critical. By attaining knowledge and hands-on training, people who receive their certification will have the skills and information they need to act.

At home or out in public, training can also save the life of a friend or family member.

CPR intervention:

  • Drowning
  • Trauma
  • Electrocution
  • Drug Overdose

More People Need to Know CPR

Not enough people possess the training necessary to aid others in emergency situations. This means that many bystanders fear they’ll make mistakes or cause harm to the person in need of help. Therefore they don’t intervene. Even those who do try to help don't know the correct procedures to follow to ensure the safety of the person in need of help.

With standard first aid with CPR-Level C and AED certification, you will know exactly what to do if the unexpected occurs.

Knowing CPR Increases Confidence

Many emergencies occur unexpectedly, it’s vital that individuals who intervene have confidence and cognizance to make the correct decisions. With the skills you learn from CPR, you will confidently react in emergency situations. Seeing someone approaching the situation calmly and assuredly also puts bystanders at ease and decreases panic.

CPR-C Certification is Easy to Complete

People are unaware how easy and quickly it is to receive your certification. RPM Trucking Industry Safety offers full day workshops (8 hours). It’s also not limited to specific people or those with medical backgrounds. Anyone can become certified and put their skills to use to save the life of a co-worker, friend, or loved one.

Our first-aid CPR course provides the skills needed to recognize and respond to cardiovascular emergencies and choking for adults, children and infants. It includes training in the use of an Automated External Defibrillator (AED) as well as first-aid (e.g. cuts, scrapes, bleeds, bloody noses, fainting, seizures, how to use an EpiPen). The course is suitable for workplace requirements and certified by the Canadian Red Cross.

RPM's Emergency First Aid with CPR Level C & AED training is a member benefit only.
In order to register your company must be registered with RPM and currently working towards or have achieved SAFE Work Certification.
For more information contact us by phone 204-632-6600 or email info@rpmsafety.ca


 

Flat Deck Safety Tips All Truck Drivers Should Know

- by Christina Hryniuk

Truck drivers are exposed to risks of injury that are often preventable, however workplace injuries do happen and they land you in the hospital. It may seem like common knowledge for the tips below, but some may need a reminder.

Slips, trips, and falls

Last year 97 Manitoba truck drivers fell off a non-moving vehicle. Over 5 years, roughly 500 people in the industry fell as well. In fact, the single biggest cause of falls from a vehicle is driver error and failure to follow the 3-point contact rule.

Here is a refresher on how to stay clear of workplace injuries.

Explain dangers

Be aware of your surroundings, especially when you are working on ramps, gang planks without skid- or slip resistant surfaces, dock boards, dock plates, construction plates, running boards, and ladders.

Remember that metal is slippery because of its lower force of friction and traction. Metal surfaces such as running boards, platforms on equipment and ladders, can become smooth and slippery with wear.


Identify controls

When you are working around a flat deck truck there are some key things to be mindful of. For one, make sure to clean your shoes/boots of any mud, snow, ice, or grease. You will also need to make sure the running boards, treads, steps, footholds, and platforms are clean and dry.

Other things to do:

  • Have a secure grip on the handhold before stepping up.
  • Don’t climb down with something in your free hand. Put it on the floor and reach for it when you are on the ground.
  • Always be aware of your surroundings and any obstacles around you.

When you are mounting and dismounting maintain 3-point contact while getting on and off the equipment until you reach the ground, cab, or stable platform. This means one hand and two feet or two hands and one foot must always be on the equipment.

It may seem obvious, but don’t jump down when getting off the bed of your truck or other part of the equipment. Carefully step down while facing the equipment.


Roadside Safety

You must stay vigilant on the road because its likely that a non-commercial driver will be distracted by either their phone, eating, drinking, or in a rush. So, it’s vital to remember to avoid tarping or re-securing loads on the side of the road. Rest stops and parking lots are more suitable to make sure your load is secured correctly.

When on the road, remember to use your high-visibility outerwear. The more visible you are, the less likely it will be for you to become a victim of distracted drivers.

Securing loads

Making pre-trip inspections may seem tedious but necessary. You shouldn’t just go through the motions when doing a pre-trip inspection because you will overlook something such as a worn tie-down or bungee that’s about to break. This will harm you or people around you.

Secure your load with a heavy tarp, tie down straps, and/or bungee cords. If you use bungee cords, be sure to hook them facing away from the tarp.

Safety is important to RPM. This post wasn’t to have you make any ground breaking revelations but bring these simple guidelines forward for you to be mindful on the road.

For more tips, information, or to register to one of our courses, or inquire about safety certification for you or your company, contact us today.


 

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