Ergonomics is about designing or planning work tasks in such a way as to improve human health, comfort and performance. Ergonomics in practice involves a study of work activities and the work environment in order to understand how people carry out the work activities. Human performance is affected by:

  • Physical ergonomics: the physical requirements of an activity
  • Cognitive ergonomics: the way information in relation to the task is presented to the person
  • Organisational ergonomics: how work is organised, for example shift patterns

The musculoskeletal system is a combination of the muscular and skeletal systems, which work together to allow the body to move and perform activities. It consists of muscles, tendons, ligaments, nerves, blood vessels and supporting tissues. Evidence-based information is used to study a work activity in order to assess both human comfort and physical capability to complete the task. Musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) are injuries or disorders that affect any part of the musculoskeletal system. MSDs are associated with ergonomic risk factors such as excessive force, awkward posture and repetition. Symptoms of MSDs can include aches and pains, swelling, numbness and weakness.

Service Breakdown

Current medical and scientific evidence highlights the importance of an ergonomic approach to avoid or reduce the risk of musculoskeletal injury and the risk assessment process is central to effective ergonomic risk management.
Corribview Safety Services Ltd can assist with your companies Ergonomic Risk Assessments and the following three relevant risk assessment tools are used by our qualified ergonomic assessors.

  • Manual handling assessment charts (the MAC tool)
  • Risk assessment of pushing and pulling (RAPP) tool
  • Assessment of repetitive tasks of the upper limbs (the ART tool)

It is important when carrying our ergonomic assessments that staff who carry out assessments (assessors) are familiar with the operations in question and have competency in using the relevant risk assessment tools.

Advantages of conducting ergonomic assessments

  • The protection of human health, improving worker performance and requirements under Irish law.
  • Reduction in MSDs (Musculoskeletal disorders) and RSI (Repetitive Strain Injury)
  • Employers have a legal duty to manage ergonomic risk in the workplace and to put appropriate measures in place to avoid or reduce risk of musculoskeletal injury.
  • Accident and ill health statistics for the Irish workplace also highlight the need for more effective management of ergonomic risk in the workplace.
    • For example: 8,381 non-fatal injuries were reported to the Health and Safety Authority in 2016 and one in every three of those injuries involved workers carrying out a manual handling task in the workplace that resulted in a musculoskeletal injury.