Using a pneumatic drill to make multiple holes in a concrete structure
Construction and repair tasks in concrete retaining walls, foundations, and dams often require holding and controlling a heavy vibrating tool for prolonged periods of time. Risk factors include high force grips, exposure to hand-arm vibration, and awkward postures of the back and upper extremities. Using a personnel lift does not eliminate these risk factors.
A tool support was assembled from easily available lumber and secured to the guardrails of the lift with C-clamps. A guide for the bit was fabricated from steel pipe welded to a bracket that could be easily attached to the rails of the lift.
An in-line remote actuator was installed so that the worker would not have to bend forward to operate the trigger.
$100 in parts
Evaluation of Intervention
- Significant improvement in back, wrist and shoulder posture
- Virtually eliminates prolonged grip of tool and hand-arm vibration exposure.
- Productivity significantly increased for large jobs.
- Easy to assemble, can be used on rented lift equipment
- Some areas inaccessible to the personnel lift.
- Workers have to disassemble and reassemble tool support and bit guide for each job.
- Some exposure to whole-body vibration remains.
Semi-Quantitative Evaluation of Intervention
- Reduction of Identified Risk Factor
- No New Risk Factors Introduced
- Productivity not Reduced
- Low Cost
Other Possible Interventions
- Mount tool on articulating overhead support or "machine gun" mount.
Submitted by Ira Janowitz, PT, CPE, UC Ergonomics Program