Communications industry - 139 entries found
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Technological stress: Psychophysiological aspects of working with modern information technology
In a study of the bodily, mental and psychophysiological reactions of employees involved in the design of advanced telecommunications systems and of office employees using regular video display technology, several stress-related psychosomatic disorders were identified. They include sleep disturbances, psychophysiological stress and somatic complaints. Controlled intervention programmes aimed at enhancing organizational structures and individual coping strategies have proved effective in counteracting the negative effects of working with information technology. The two-way interaction between the external information technology environment and bodily and mental reactions needs to be taken into account in the design and use of modern information technology. Topics: biological effects; computers; CRT display terminals; human factors; mental health; neuropsychic stress; new technologies; office work; programme evaluation; psychological and psychiatric services; psychological effects; psychosomatic disorders; questionnaire survey; sleep disturbances; social aspects; telecommunications.
Scandinavian Journal of Work, Environment and Health, 1997, Vol.23, Suppl.3, p.97-103. Illus. 43 ref.
Polanyi M.F.D., Cole D.C., Beaton D.E., Chung J., Wells R., Abdolell M., Beech-Hawley L., Ferrier S.E., Mondloch M.V., Shields S.A., Smith J.M., Shannon H.S.
Upper limb work-related musculoskeletal disorders among newspaper employees: Cross-sectional survey results
Topics: Canada; computer terminals; cross-sectional study; elbow; ergonomics; hand; human factors; journalism; keyboard operations; musculoskeletal diseases; neck disorders; repetitive strain injury; risk factors; shoulder; social aspects; speed of work; upper extremity disorders; work organization; work posture; wrist.
American Journal of Industrial Medicine, Dec. 1997, Vol.32, No.6, p.620-628. 49 ref.
Wahlstedt K.G.I., Edling C.
Organizational changes at a postal sorting terminal - Their effects upon work satisfaction, psychosomatic complaints and sick leave
Topics: human relations; job dissatisfaction; mental stress; postal services; psychosomatic disorders; questionnaire survey; shift work; sickness absenteeism; social aspects; Sweden; work organization.
Work and Stress, July-Sep. 1997, Vol.11, No.3, p.279-291. 15 ref.
Health and Safety Executive, Broadcasting and Performing Arts Joint Advisory Committee
Camera operations on location: Guidance for managers and camera crews
This booklet provides guidance on safety during camera work carried out on location. Part I covers managing health and safety: responsibility for risk assessment; decision making during the assignment of camera crews to work schedules; risk assessment guidelines. Part II provides guidelines on: safe systems of work in potentially hazardous locations (areas of public disorder, chemical incidents, diving operations, filming from the air, filming violent incidents, work at height); safety of mains lighting; manual handling of equipment; personal protective equipment; avoiding stress; electrical safety. In appendices: summary of relevant legislation; use of contractors; hazard assessment checklist.
HSE Books, P.O. Box 1999, Sudbury, Suffolk CO10 6FS, United Kingdom, 1997. iv, 38p. Illus. 17 ref. Price: GBP 11.75.
Wilhardt P., Breum N.O., Hansen Å.M., Knudsen L.E.
Exposure to air pollution in the transport sector
Eksponering for luftforurening i transportsektoren [in Danish]
Topics: aromatic hydrocarbons; atmospheric pollution; nitrogen dioxide; determination in air; determination in urine; drivers; exposure evaluation; mathematical models; postal services; respirable dust; road transport.
Arbejdsmiljøinstituttet, Lersø Parkallé 105, 2100 København Ø, Denmark, 1996. 76p. Illus. 36 ref.
Dempsey P.G., Ayoub M.M., Bernard T.M., Endsley M.R., Karwowski W., Lin C.J., Smith J.L.
Ergonomic investigation of letter-carrier satchels: Part I - Field Study. Part II - Biomechanical laboratory study
Four satchels designed for manually carrying and delivering mail were evaluated by 306 letter carriers. The satchels differed primarily in the presence or absence of a waist belt, the number and design of the shoulder straps and the number of pouches. The satchel with two shoulder straps and two pouches, resulting in more symmetric loading, was the most desirable of the satchels tested. Biomechanical investigations indicated that this satchel resulted in lower postural deviation, lower compressive forces at the L5/S1 joint, lower pressure on the shoulders, and more balanced force distribution between the feet.
Applied Ergonomics, Oct. 1996, Vol.27, No.5, p.303-320. Illus. 15 ref.
Ryan J., Zwerling C., Jones M.
Cigarette smoking at hire as a predictor of employment outcome
A one-year follow-up study of a cohort of 2,537 U.S. postal service workers showed that cigarette smoking at the time of hire was associated with increased risk of accidents, injuries, disciplinary measures and involuntary turnover. In a follow-up study one year later, smokers' elevated risks for accidents, injuries and discipline had decreased, while the risk for involuntary turnover was slightly higher. Absence rates for smokers were higher in both periods. Employees who are known to smoke at the time of hire are at increased risk of adverse employment outcomes.
Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Sep. 1996, Vol.38, No.9, p.928-933. 27 ref.
Postal service tries to reverse violent image through employee assistance and team approach
The problem of violence among U.S. postal workers is discussed and the development of an employee assistance programme is described. The programme includes the establishment of incident response and assessment teams in each postal district and an alcohol recovery programme. Work climates are assessed for potentially dangerous situations and counselling is offered to employees. Preventive measures include establishing a policy for dealing with harassment, threats and violence, and providing nonpunitive access to medical and mental health resources.
Journal of the American Medical Association, 12 June 1996, Vol.275, No.22, p.1710-1711.
Stephens C., Smith M.
Occupational overuse syndrome and the effects of psychosocial stressors on keyboard users in the newspaper industry
In a survey of 550 keyboard users working in different offices of the same newspaper company, 29.3% of workers reported experiencing neck, shoulder or arm pain. Differences between high- and low-pain reporting office groups were significantly related to perceptions of the quality of the work environment. Factors associated with low-pain reporting environments included higher peer cohesion, higher staff support, higher control, less work pressure, less stress, greater autonomy and more physical comfort. Consideration should be given to psychosocial factors in the design of work and workplaces.
Work and Stress, Apr.-June 1996, Vol.10, No.2, p.141-153. 29 ref.
Techno-stress: A prospective psychophysiological study of the impact of a controlled stress-reduction program in advanced telecommunication systems design work
A group of advanced telecommunication systems design workers participated in one of three stress-reduction training programmes based on relaxation techniques. Psychophysiological assessments were carried out before and after the programme. Compared to a reference group, the intervention group showed a significant improvement with regard to circulating levels of the stress-sensitive hormone prolactin, an attenuation in mental strain, improvement in cardiovascular risk factors and a decrease in circulating thrombocytes. The type of programme chosen did not affect the results. While the programmes alleviated some of the stress in these workers, more attention should be paid to the design of healthy work environments.
Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Jan. 1996, Vol.38, No.1, p.53-65. Illus. 43 ref.
Westlander G., Viitasara E., Johansson A., Shahnavaz H.
Evaluation of an ergonomics intervention programme in VDT workplaces
Surveys of work conditions, work loads and job-related health issues were carried out among VDT operators engaged in routine data-entry and data-dialogue tasks in two Swedish companies. On the basis of these surveys, an intervention programme was developed, implemented and evaluated. Evaluation criteria covered the opinions of personnel on the programme, efforts made to implement suggested measures and recommendations, and the impact of organizational conditions on the implementation of the programme. Particular emphasis was placed on the research interest of the study. The role of the organizational context in the effective implementation of an intervention plan is discussed.
Applied Ergonomics, Apr. 1995, Vol.26, No.2, p.83-92. 16 ref.
Kopardekar P., Mital A.
The effect of different work-rest schedules on fatigue and performance of a simulated directory assistance operator's task
The directory assistance operator's task with a visual display terminal was simulated to determine the preferable work-rest schedule from among three different schedules: 30min of work followed by a 5min break (30-5); 60min of work followed by a 10min break (60-10); and 120min of work without any break (120-0). The total working duration was 2h. Errors made during the work and subjective responses before and after the working period (2h) were recorded and analyzed. Results showed that the first two work-rest schedules were preferable to the third as significantly fewer errors were made (p ≥ 0.01) when a short break was provided. There was no significant difference (p ≥ 0.10) in errors between the (30-5) and (60-10) schemes. Fewer before and after subjective responses differed significantly for the (30-5) and (60-10) schemes than for the (120-0) scheme. The overall effect of the schemes on subjective responses, however, was not statistically significant at the 5% level. Since both the (30-5) and (60-10) schemes were found acceptable, the (60-10) scheme is recommended since it is easy to implement, causes fewer breaks and therefore fewer work interruptions, and leads to fewer total minutes of break.
Ergonomics, Oct. 1994, Vol.37, No.10, Special Issue, p.1697-1707. Illus. 16 ref.
The impact of ergonomic intervention on individual health and corporate prosperity in a telecommunications environment
Summary of several papers published in different journals and conference proceedings. Changes in workload due to improved workplace design and their effect on the incidence of musculoskeletal illness in female workers were evaluated. Sick-leave due to musculoskeletal illness was reduced from 5.3% to 3.1% and turnover from 30.1% to 7.6%. The cost and benefits of this ergonomic intervention were analyzed. Electromyography revealed a quantitative relationship between static load on the trapezius muscle and musculoskeletal sick-leave, related to length of employment. A study of the relationship between postural load and musculoskeletal injury in comparable groups of female workers with respect to age, working hours per day and time of employment showed that the static trapezius load must be kept to a minimum; median arm flexion should be less than 15° and a median arm abduction less than 10°; a forward median flexion of the back of less than 20° did not seem to lead to a higher rate of low back pain for workers with long periods of employment.
Ergonomics, Oct. 1994, Vol.37, No.10, Special Issue, p.1679-1696. Illus. 27 ref.
Hales T.R., Sauter S.L., Peterson M.R., Fine L.J., Putz-Anderson V., Schleifer L.R., Ochs T.T., Bernard B.P.
Musculoskeletal disorders among visual display terminal users in a telecommunications company
The relationship between workplace factors and work-related upper extremity musculoskeletal disorders (UE disorders) was assessed in a cross-sectional study of 533 telecommunication employees utilizing video display terminals (VDTs). Cases of UE disorders were defined using symptom questionnaires and physical examinations. Data on demographics, individual factors, work organization and practices, and psychosocial aspects of work, were obtained by questionnaire. Associations between workplace factors and UE disorders were assessed by multiple logistic models generated for each of the four UE areas (neck, shoulder, elbow, hand/wrists). One-hundred and eleven (22%) participants met the case definition for UE disorders: probable tendon-related disorders were the most common (15% of participants), and probable nerve entrapment syndromes was found in 4%. The hand/wrist was the area most affected (12% of participants). The results indicate that work-related UE musculoskeletal disorders are relatively common among telecommunication workers who use VDTs and that the psychosocial work environment is related to the occurrence of these disorders.
Ergonomics, Oct. 1994, Vol.37, No.10, Special Issue, p.1603-1621. 79 ref.
Mital A., Ghahramani B.
The injury profile of a large telecommunication company: A statistical summary
Over the years, over-exertion injuries have continued to increase despite ergonomic interventions to control their frequency of occurrence. Occupational injury and illness data from a large US telecommunications company (297,548 employees), collected over a seven-year period, suggest that: (1) better record-keeping may be a reason behind the reported increase in injuries; workday losses decline as a result of improved ergonomic and occupational health interventions; (2) serious injuries are not just limited to heavy manufacturing industries; and (3) reduction in workday losses may not translate in injury cost savings.
Ergonomics, Oct. 1994, Vol.37, No.10, Special Issue, p.1591-1601. 8 ref.
Bloswick D.S., Gerber A., Sebesta D., Johnson S., Mecham W.
Effect of mailbag design on musculoskeletal fatigue and metabolic load
Based on the results of a pilot study, two types of mailbag were developed as alternatives to the conventional US postal mailbag, which hangs over one shoulder. Both included waist supports and one split the load into two parts. Tests indicated that use of the alternative mailbags resulted in no significant change in metabolic load compared with the conventional mailbag, but did result in significantly less lateral trunk muscle fatigue. It is proposed that this reduction in fatigue would result in reduced musculoskeletal stress and reduced potential for back injury.
Human Factors, June 1994, Vol.36, No.2, p.210-218. Illus. 13 ref.
Derksen J.C.M., Van Riel M.P.J.M., Van Wingerden J.P., Snijders C.J.
A comparison of working postures of parcel sorters using three different working methods
The postures of eight parcel sorters were measured while using three different working methods: two different sorting tables and a hydraulic lifting platform. The methods were compared with respect to the posture of the trunk and consequent load on the lumbar spine. While using the lifting platform, the subjects stood 8-11% more erect compared to working at the sorting tables, thereby reducing the load on the lumbar spine. Use of the lifting platform is therefore the preferred method of working, although it is stressed that the way in which the sorters use the platform is important.
Ergonomics, Feb. 1994, Vol.37, No.2, p.299-309. Illus. 16 ref.
Saldaña N., Herrin G.D., Armstrong T.J., Franzblau A.
A computerized method for assessment of musculoskeletal discomfort in the workforce: A tool for surveillance
Perceived musculoskeletal discomfort data were collected directly from 15 rural mail carriers by means of a computerized discomfort assessment system. Most participants in the study found the system easy to learn and to use. The neck, midline back, lower back, back and shoulders and hands were reported as locations of regular discomfort by almost half of the participants; the site of discomfort was related to the tasks. Temporal patterns of discomfort seem to be potentially useful to assess the short term effects of ergonomic and medical interventions in the workforce.
Ergonomics, June 1994, Vol.37, No.6, p.1097-1112. Illus. 40 ref.
Zwerling C., Sprince N.L., Ryan J., Jones M.P.
Occupational injuries - Comparing the rates of male and female postal workers
To compare the injury rates of male and female postal workers, data on a cohort of 2,337 new postal employees hired between 1986 and 1989 were reanalyzed. The analysis controlled for potential confounding by age, race, smoking status, and drug use. Compared with men, women had an increased relative risk for occupational injuries in each of the three largest job classifications: letter carrier, letter-sorting machine clerk, and mail handler. The relative risks were not constant over time. For letter carriers and letter-sorting machine clerks, the increased risks for women were noted only during the first year of employment (relative risk (RR)=1.93, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.40-2.67 and RR=2.60, 95% CI 1.31-5.15, respectively). For mail handlers, the increased risks for women were noted only after the first year of employment (RR=2.13, 95% CI 1.09-4.15).
American Journal of Epidemiology, 1 July 1993, Vol.138, No.1, p.46-55. Illus. 19 ref.
Attacks on postmen in Northern Ireland. What features of the attacks are associated with prolonged absence from work?
The sickness absence records of 228 postmen who had been attacked on duty in Northern Ireland between 1985 and 1989 were examined. The pattern of absences due to psychological causes in the six months after the attack was recorded. The presence of relevant sickness absence and the amount was correlated to three specific features of the attacks, i.e. use of arms, use of violence and abduction. Armed attacks produced a significantly more frequent and larger amount of sickness absence. The proportion of victims taking any sickness absence after violent attacks was not significantly greater but those who did so were off work for much longer. Abduction of victims from the scene produced much more frequent absence from work but there was no significant difference in the duration of the absence. The 20 employees who were attacked for a second time during the study period showed a five-fold increase in the length of sickness absence taken.
Occupational Medicine, Feb. 1993, Vol.43, No.1, p.39-42. 10 ref.
Smith M.J., Carayon P., Sanders K.J., Lim S.Y., LeGrande D.
Employee stress and health complaints in jobs with and without electronic performance monitoring
A questionnaire survey of 745 employees in U.S. telecommunications companies examined job stress among directory-assistance operators, service representatives and clerks. Employees who had their performance electronically monitored perceived their working conditions as more stressful, and reported higher levels of job boredom, psychological tension, anxiety, depression, anger, health complaints and fatigue. Because of the low response rate (25%), results should be interpreted with caution.
Applied Ergonomics, Feb. 1992, Vol.23, No.1, p.17-27. 25 ref.
Acoustic trauma in a telephone operator
This case report describes an incident where a telephone operator suffered acoustic trauma from a subscriber blowing a whistle down a telephone mouthpiece, the sound being transmitted into the ear of the operator. Evidence of hearing loss persisted for several months before complete recovery was achieved. Comparison is made with hearing loss associated with the use of cordless telephones.
Occupational Medicine, Nov. 1992, Vol.42, No.4, p.215-216. 7 ref.
Zwerling C., Ryan J.
Preemployment drug screening - The epidemiologic issues
The paper reviews recent studies of postal workers which suggest an association between positive pre-employment drug screens and turnover, absenteeism, accidents, injuries, and discipline. It is argued that these associations are weaker than had been assumed; cost-benefit analyses show that whether drug screening saves money depends both on the costs associated with adverse outcomes such as accidents and on the prevalence of drug use in the population screened. Finally, it is argued that the predictive value of a positive drug screen also depends crucially on the prevalence of drug use; in populations with low prevalence of drug use, a large proportion of the positives may be false positives.
Journal of Occupational Medicine, June 1992, Vol.34, No.6, p.595-599. 24 ref.
Stålhammar H.R., Louhevaara V.
Anthropometric, muscle strength and spinal mobility characteristics as predictors in the rating of acceptable loads in parcel sorting
The rating of acceptable load attained with a standard test and a work-simulating test for postal parcel sorting was related to anthropometric, muscle strength, and spinal mobility characteristics of 18 male sorters. The dynamic endurance of hand-grip muscles, trunk strength, and spinal flexibility seemed to be the most powerful predictors for the psychophysically assessed acceptable loads in experienced workers performing manual materials handling tasks.
Ergonomics, Sep. 1992, Vol.35, No.9, p.1033-1044. 37 ref.
Zwerling C., Ryan J., Orav E.J.
Costs and benefits of preemployment drug screening
In a study to estimate the benefits of drug testing, a cohort of 2,533 Boston postal workers were screened for drugs. Benefits to the Postal Service of such screening were estimated using average cost data for the Postal Service in Boston and nationwide. Results showed that drug screening would have saved the Postal Service USD 162 per applicant hired. However, this analysis is very sensitive to the assumptions made, and it is concluded that any company considering pre-employment drug screening should carefully weigh the costs and benefits in its own industry.
Journal of the American Medical Association, 1 Jan. 1992, Vol.267, No.1, p.91-93. 14 ref.
Daltroy L.H., Larson M.G., Wright E.A., Malspeis S., Fossel A.H., Ryan J., Zwerling C., Liang M.H.
A case-control study of risk factors for industrial back injury: Implications for primary and secondary prevention programs
Data were collected on 228 consecutive back injuries in Boston's General Mail Facility and 228 non-injured controls drawn randomly from each case's work unit, matching on craft (clerk, mailhandler, maintenance), shift, and general supervisor. Data were collected on age, sex, duration of employment, 3 year history of injury claims, overtime work in the past 2 weeks, job change in the past 60 days, and machine vs. manual job. Risk factors for back injury were examined. They included history of back injury claim, younger age, shorter duration of employment, recent job change, and history of non-back injury claim. Among heavy lifters (vs. clerks) overtime and being female increased the risk of injury.
American Journal of Industrial Medicine, Oct. 1991, Vol.20, No.4, p.505-515. 26 ref.
Matanoski G.M., Breysse P.N., Elliott E.A.
Electromagnetic field exposure and male breast cancer
Recent reports have identified an association between male breast cancer and potential exposure to very low frequency electric or magnetic fields. In this study, 2 cases of male breast cancer were identified in telephone workers employed in the central office switching environment, which produced a different pattern of EMF exposure from that for other workers. It is suggested that the excesses of male breast cancer which have been observed in workers potentially exposed to EMF may fit theories that EMF exposures can change melatonin diurnal rhythms and thus lead to changes in the incidence of specific cancers.
Lancet, 23 Mar. 1991, Vol.337, No.8743, p.737. 7 ref.
Knave B., Paulsson H., Floderus B., Grönkvist L., Häggström T., Jungeteg G., Nilsson H., Voss M., Wennberg A.
Incidence of work-related disorders and absenteeism as tools in the implementation of work environment improvements: the Sweden Post strategy
This paper describes a comprehensive, five-year work environment project, Postal Work Environment (PWE) 2000, launched in 1989 by Sweden Post (SP) with the aim of identifying jobs and employees with the most exposed work environments and to initiate remedial programmes. Employee interviews and statistical and epidemiological evaluation of illness absenteeism and occupational injuries served as input data for devising different measuring factors of work-related ill health. The results provided an incentive to regional action programmes in which risk areas and risk occupations were correlated with the load factors, primarily in ergonomic and work organisation areas, cited in interview replies.
Ergonomics, June 1991, Vol.34, No.6, p.841-848.
Amick B.C., Celentano D.D.
Structural determinants of the psychosocial work environment: Introducing technology in the work stress framework
An analysis is made of data from a 1978 national survey of the working conditions in post offices in order to demonstrate how technology can influence worker health. The study considers the health of postal clerks engaged in sorting mail. The use of machine-paced technological systems is seen to structure the job such that a combination of conditions is created (high job demands, low autonomy and low social support) which places the worker at greater risk for the development of stress-related diseases. The research suggests that there are organisational characteristics to be considered in discussions of workplace psychosocial stress.
Ergonomics, May 1991, Vol.34, No.5, p.625-646. Illus. 45 ref.
Hocking B., Borland R., Owen N., Kemp G.
A total ban on workplace smoking is acceptable and effective
The acceptability and effectiveness of a total workplace smoking ban by Telecom Australia was evaluated. Staff were surveyed before and after the ban. Sixty-six percent of staff reported that a total ban was operative, and 31% reported that a total ban except for a smoking room, leaving only 3% reporting lesser restriction. Smokers were smoking between three and four less cigarettes per work day, and the numbers of smokers had decreased by about double the community rate. The policy had little perceived effect on productivity but resulted in some tension between staff that progressively decreased and now is limited to the few areas where there were problems with compliance. A subsample of managers and staff were interviewed and factors relevant to successful implementation of the policy were identified. These included a clear statement of policy, strong managerial support via equipping managers with leadership and negotiating skills, and reliance on occupational health nurses. It is important to provide assistance to affected staff to help them adjust to the ban both before and after implementation.
Journal of Occupational Medicine, Feb. 1991, Vol.33, No.2, p.163-167. 17 ref.
Working time in posts and telecommunications - Report III
La durée du travail dans les postes et télécommunications - Rapport III [in French]
Working paper and report prepared by the ILO for its Joint Committee for Postal and Telecommunications Services (Geneva, 1991). Chapter 1 of this report outlines the specific context of working time in the postal and telecommunications services, focusing on the special needs of this sector, the implications of recent innovations and the characteristics of its labour force. Chapter 2 examines the regulation of several important aspects of working time such as normal hours of work, overtime, rest periods, annual leave, public holidays, maternity leave, and it highlights differences in regulations between postal and telecommunications services. Chapter 3 deals with the organisation of working time. It examines night and shift work, part-time work and temporary and casual work. Special attention is paid to innovative experiences such as flexible working time, modular working time systems, job sharing, compressed work-weeks and telework. The report ends with a summary of the main points made in each chapter and a list of suggested points for discussion.
ILO Publications, International Labour Office, 1211 Genève 22, Switzerland, 1991. iii, 58p. Price: CHF 15.00.
Beerman B., Kylian H., Schmidt K.H., Klimmer F., Kramer H., Runtenfranz J.
Stress and strain of letter sorting in an air mail head office
Belastung und Beanspruchung bei der Briefverteilung in einer Luftpostleitstelle [in German]
Mail sorting requires rapid and accurate information processing. This was revealed by a job study of female postal employees in Germany. Questionnaires, time-and-motion study and physiological measurements were used. Heart rate, oral temperature and musculoskeletal complaints were slightly higher during night shifts than during day shifts. No differences existed in the excretion of the catecholamines (adrenaline and noradrenaline) between day and night shifts. Higher amounts of mail did not affect any of these physiological parameters.
Arbeitsmedizin - Sozialmedizin - Präventivmedizin, 1990, Vol.25, No.5, p.202-204. 213-219. Illus. 16 ref.
Conditions of employment and work of journalists
Conditions d'emploi et de travail des journalistes [in French]
This report prepared by the ILO to serve as a basis for the Tripartite Meeting's discussions held in Geneva, Switzerland, 21-29 November 1990 is based mainly on information received from governments, employers' organisations and trade unions. Main topics covered: entry into the profession and employment status, labour relations, the determination of conditions of employment, working time and pay, technological and structural change, special risks facing journalists, social security and training facilities.
ILO Publications, International Labour Office, 1211 Geneva 22, Switzerland, 1990. 114p. Price: CHF 20.00.
AIDS: a rehabilitation perspective
A questionnaire survey carried out among British post office employees showed that despite extensive publicity on AIDS, fears, prejudices and myths still exist about this major public health problem. Recommendations to remove possible adverse effects on industrial relations in connection with AIDS are given to management, unions and employees.
Occupational Health, July-Aug. 1988, Vol.40, No.7/8, p.618-623. Illus.
Dog bite prevention program: Letter carriers/mail service courier's training workbook
This training manual teaches the letter carrier or mail service courier how to deal effectively with aggressive dogs.
Canada Post, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, 1987. 22p. Illus.
Dog bite prevention program: Instructor's manual
This manual provides programme instructors with guidance in training current letter carriers, mail service couriers, and new employees in the prevention of dog bites. Practical information on how to prevent dog bites forms the core of the programme. Theory is provided to explain the underlying causes which lead to dog attacks. The Canada Post dog bite prevention programme is also explained.
Canada Post, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, 1987. 90p.
Vassileva-Todorova L., Točeva V.
Microclimatic and air ionization problems in electronic telecommunication centres
Mikroklimatični i aerojonizacionni problemi v elektronni telekomunikacionni centrali [in Bulgarian]
Electronic automatic telegraph stations are up-to-date telecommunications installations. There is no information in the literature on working conditions in these electronic telecommunication centres. A survey showed that the basic problems are related to the microclimate and the air ionization of the working areas. Air conditioning creates an extremely static microclimate during all the periods of the year and a systematic insufficiency of air ions. Possibilities for regulating the air conditioning are discussed with a view to establishing physiologically sound microclimatic and ionic conditions.
Problemi na higienata, Aug. 1987, Vol.12, p.75-82. 7 ref.
De Groot J.P.
Electromyographic analysis of a postal sorting task
In the Dutch postal system, letters are sorted by means of a sorting frame, consisting of a two-dimensional array of pigeon-holes. By means of electromyography, the load on three shoulder muscles (trapezius, and anterior and lateral parts of the deltoid muscles) was measured as a function of the location of pigeon-holes. The vertical position of the pigeon-hole appeared to be the most significant factor for the load on the three muscles. The eccentricity along a horizontal axis also contributed; this is interpreted as indicating the distance to the shoulder joint. The top row of pigeon-holes required much more muscular activity than the other pigeon-holes. The relevance of these findings to the occurence of occupational arm-shoulder syndromes is discussed, and consequences for the redesign of the sorting frame are indicated.
Ergonomics, July 1987, Vol.30, No.7, p.1079-1088. Illus. 18 ref.
Occhipinti E., Colombini D., Menoni O., Molteni G., Grieco A.
Work postures and spinal changes in telephone operators who use visual display units
Posture di lavoro ed alterazioni del rachide in operatori telefonici addetti a videoterminale [in Italian]
A study of 213 telephone operators (working on VDUs) revealed incorrect sitting postures for most of them (due to the fact that they have to sit for long periods with the arms raised and unsupported) and a significantly higher than normal prevalence of degenerative alterations of the cervical, thoracic and lumbo-sacral regions of the spine. These results support the hypothesis that prolonged sitting postures at work constitute a risk factor for the spine.
Medicina del lavoro, Jan.-Feb. 1987, Vol.78, No.1, p.59-67. Illus. 21 ref.
Weed D.L., Tyroler H.A., Shy C.
The healthy worker effect in actively working communications workers
The healthy worker effect is examined in a large population of actively working communications workers. The mortality experience of 338,306 white male workers at the American Telephone and Telegraph Company grouped by age, duration of service, and general cause categories is compared with the mortality experience of US white males in 1976. Observed were statistically significant and often substantial deficits in mortality among these active workers in almost all categories. For cancers and cardiovascular diseases, mortality ratios tended to decrease across age in the subgroups with longer service durations; these ratios consistently increased across duration of service in older ages. In subgroups with long service durations, the secondary selection of the healthy worker effect in this active worker population appears to increase with advancing age.
Journal of Occupational Medicine, Apr. 1987, Vol.29, No.4, p.335-339. 18 ref.
Some notes on safety, health and ergonomics in offices and service occupations
Algumas notas sobre segurança, higiene e ergonomia nos escritórios e serviços [in Portuguese]
Safety and health training guide aimed at workers in the Portuguese national postal and telecommunications authority. Main topics covered: lighting; thermal environment; noise; harmful substances; working posture; carrying of loads; importance of physical exercise.
Serviços de Saúde Ocupacional; Serviços de Segurança, Higiene e Ergonomia; Correios e Telecomunicações de Portugal, Lisboa, Portugal, 1986. 23p.
Hallot R., Jortay A., De Jonghe C.
Psychological, medical and social consequences of hold-ups in post offices
Conséquences psycho-médico-sociales des hold-up contre la régie des postes [in French]
This survey is an attempt at evaluating the human cost of armed robberies committed against workers in the Belgian Post Office. The results of medical examinations, of a questionnaire survey and of an analysis of sickness leave records were used to evaluate 381 hold-ups involving 1,108 victims. Save for a few exceptional cases, health complaints by the victims are of a psychological origin, with psychosomatic symptoms. Persistence of these symptoms, and a tendency for the development of phobia of being attacked, were noted among the victims. Therapeutic and prophylactic measures are suggested. The questionnaires used are given in the appendix.
Cahiers de médecine du travail - Cahiers voor arbeidsgeneeskunde, 1986, Vol.23, No.1, p.57-69.
Alexander R.W., Fedorule M.J.
Epidemic psychogenic illness in a telephone operator's building
Epidemic psychogenic illness or mass hysteria occurred following a pronouncement by an operator of toxic fume exposure. Two outbreaks occurred within 2 days, resulting in mass evacuation and closure of the building. Extensive environmental studies failed to identify a causative substance. 81 employees were treated in emergency medical facilities for clinical and laboratory findings compatible with anxiety and hyperventilation. Characteristics of this workgroup were similar to those described in other epidemics, suggesting a pattern for susceptibility. Failure of early recognition and overreaction by supervisors and various outside groups and agencies contributed to escalation of the epidemic.
Journal of Occupational Medicine, Jan. 1986, Vol.28, No.1, p.43-45. 11 ref.
Germain C., Martin C.
Stress and new technology - Postal and telecommunications sectors - (Case studies of postal code and sorting) - France
Le stress et les technologies nouvelles - Les secteurs des postes et télécommunications - (Etudes de cas sur le code postal et le triage) - France [in French]
Report of a case study organised by the European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions on the effects of new technology on stress at work with postal sorting in France. Coverage: postal services in France; the introduction of new technology in this sector; current research on human factors as they apply in the introduction of new technology; principles of the work study carried out at two mail sorting offices; general results of the case studies; processing of the results and discussion; conclusions. Also included are the evaluation reports drawn up by representatives of governments, employers and trade unions from the Colloquium on Physical and Psychological Stress in the Introduction of New Technology in Certain Postal and Telecommunications Sectors, held in Dublin 21-22 Feb. 1985. The French-language version also contains a bibliography and additional materials from the case study.
European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions, Loughlinstown House, Shankill, Co. Dublin, Ireland, 1985. English-language version: 101p. Illus. French-language version: 252p. Illus. 44 ref.
Brasselle C., Crommen T., De Keyser V.
Stress and new technology - Postal and telecommunications sectors - (Case studies of postal code and sorting) - Belgium
Le stress et les technologies nouvelles - Les secteurs des postes et télécommunications - (Etude de cas sur le code postal et le triage) - Belgique [in French]
Report of a case study organised by the European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions on the effects of new technology on stress at work with postal sorting in Belgium. Coverage: the mechanisation of postal sorting in Belgium; reflections on the mechanisation and remarks on the organisation of the postal code in Belgium; description of the work and equipment of a mail sorting centre; theoretical evaluation of stress at work; analysis of a mechanised provincial sorting centre (research methodology, objective, results); conclusions. Also included are the evaluation reports drawn up by representatives of governments, employers and trade unions from the Colloquium on Physical and Psychological Stress in the Introduction of New Technology in Certain Postal and Telecommunications Sectors, held in Dublin 21-22 Feb. 1985. A summary report in English of about 50p is given in the appendix.
European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions, Loughlinstown House, Shankill, Co. Dublin, Ireland, 1985. 152p. Illus. 41 ref.
Jones D.M., Chamberlain A.G.
Stress and new technology - Postal and telecommunications sectors - (Case studies of postal code and sorting) - United Kingdom
Report of a case study organised by the European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions on the effects of new technology on stress at work with postal sorting in the United Kingdom. Coverage: overview of the human factor considerations involved in the introduction of new technology in this sector; account of a cross-sectional study of satisfactions and stresses among the employees in three mechanised letter sorting offices based on 222 questionnaire respondents; conclusions; suggestions and recommendations for future research. Also included are the evaluation reports drawn up by representatives of governments, employers and trade unions from the Colloquium on Physical and Psychological Stress in the Introduction of New Technology in Certain Postal and Telecommunication Sectors, held in Dublin 21-22 Feb. 1985.
European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions, Loughlinstown House, Shankill, Co. Dublin, Ireland, 1985. 166p. Illus. 21 ref.
Mayer H., Adler U., Büntgen W., Pfeil D.
Stress and new technology - Postal and telecommunications sectors - (Case studies of postal code and sorting) - Federal Republic of Germany
Stress und neue Technologie - Post- und Fernmeldesektor (Fallstudien über Postcodierung und -Sortierung) - Bundesrepublik Deutschland [in German]
Report of a case study organised by the European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions on the effects of new technology on stress connected with postal sorting work in the Federal Republic of Germany. Coverage: structure and organisation of the German Federal Postal Administration; new technologies in posts and telecommunications; letter sorting and coding; offices included in the case study and investigations carried out; forecast of future developments regarding letter-sorting centres; concluding remarks. Also included are the evaluation reports drawn up by representatives of governments, employers and trade unions at the Colloquium on Physical and Psychological Stress in the Introduction of New Technology in Certain Postal and Telecommunications Sectors, held in Dublin 21-22 Feb. 1985. The German-language version also contains a bibliography and some additional material from the case study.
European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions, Loughlinstown House, Shankill, Co. Dublin, Ireland, 1985. 115p. (English), 179p. (German). Illus. ca. 300 ref. (German-lang. version only).
Silva O., Joaquim A.J.
Serviço de Formação de Correios - Serviços Saúde Ocupacional
Safety rules in the work of postmen
Regras de segurança no trabalho para carteiros [in Portuguese]
Booklet aimed at the safety training of postmen (mailmen): wearing of proper shoes; taking care on sidewalks and stairs; paying attention to dogs; avoidance of traffic accidents when crossing streets and driving two- and four-wheel vehicles; prohibition of drinking alcoholic beverages; proper lifting of loads; working in railway stations. Some statistics on accidents involving postmen in Portugal.
Edição SSO, Correios e Telecomunicações de Portugal, Lisboa, Portugal, 1985. 23p. Illus.
Manual on safety, health and ergonomics - Compilation of texts to accompany training activities
Manual - Segurança, higiene e ergonomia. Compilação de textos de apoio às acções de formação [in Portuguese]
A 4-volume training manual to be used as part of training activities offered by the Portuguese postal and telecommunication authority to its own workers. Coverage: Vol.1 - The accident record of the authority; accidents and their prevention; reporting of accidents; occupational health services. Vol.2 - Electrical hazards; welding; explosions; warning signs; machine safety; portable tools and ladders; highway safety. Vol.3 - Accident case studies; principal safety rules. Vol.4 - The thermal environment; illumination; noise; vibrations; radiations; chemical substances; toxicology; working postures; carrying of loads.
Edição SSO, Correios e Telecomunicações de Portugal, Lisboa, Portugal, 1985. 4 vols. (29p.+83p.+49p.+47p.) Illus. 8 ref.
Working conditions at video monitors
Warunki pracy przy monitorach ekranowych [in Polish]
A review of the physical and psychological hazards faced by workers at cathode-ray-tube (CRT) display units is followed by the results of observations made at CRT workstations in a billing office of the Polish postal and telecommunications authority. Although radiofrequency electric and magnetic fields above allowable levels were measured around the monitors (which had been installed in 1977), the workers were positioned far enough from the screens to be outside the danger zone. In ergonomic terms, the full 8h working day with only 2 breaks did not conform to the Central Institute of Labour Protection's 1982 recommendation of an effective 5h day with a 10min break every hour and a gymnastics break once per shift. Modification of the work schedule in accordance with the recommendations improved worker performance.
Bezpieczeństwo pracy, Jan. 1985, No.1, p.10-15. Illus. 6 ref.
Sautkin V.S., Šaptala A.A., Brjuhanova S.T.
State of the cardiovascular system in operators of the telephone information service during work
Sostojanie serdečno-sosudistoj sistemy telefonistok spravočno-informacionnoj služby v processe truda [in Russian]
Heart rate, blood pressure, minute volume and electrocardiogram were recorded at intervals during a 6.5hr daytime shift for 58 female telephone telephone operators in the information services of 2 cities. Heart rate, blood pressure and minute volume all increased over the shift, systolic and pulse pressure became more variable, and the shape of the electrocardiogram changed. Apparently the heart, and not the blood vessels, responds to the stress of the job; this produces a desynchronisation of cardiac and vasomotor regulation of the circulatory system. Because the stress is due to the combination of heavy information input and limited physical mobility, it is recommended that the work of telephone operators be broken up by workbreaks with active and passive means of relaxation.
Gigiena truda i professional'nye zabolevanija, Jan. 1985, No.1, p.11-14. Illus. 6 ref.
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