Truck Ergonomics

ErgonomicsErgonomicsErgonomics June 27, 2012

Today we have another question from a former student of Ron’s, this time regarding Truck Ergonomics:

“As a 2012 “grad” of your CEAS Course, I have been given the task of researching Truck Ergonomics for our company fleet department.  More specifically, the use of running boards/Nerf bars and steps and the benefits on 1/2 ton and 3/4 ton trucks. 

The Director of Fleet is looking to ways to save costs.  Previously, they would just automatically add these bars/boards to any larger service truck such as the 4×4 1/2 ton and 3/4 ton trucks.  However, they are looking to save costs on the newer fleet in transition and not to automatically add these.  However, they realize that there is an ergonomic advantage to having them for an employee to enter the truck in a more safe manner – especially if the employee is height challenged (shorter than 5’4″ so to speak). They are wanting to create a “standard” or protocol on what the appropriate height is of the employee in relationship to the height of the truck for the employee to “need” a step/running board or bar to safely enter the truck.”

and here is what Ron had to say:

My response to them would be that height is not the only issue that would affect the ability of an individual to safely get into and out of a truck. Physical condition, weight of worker and age will also be of some concern for entering and leaving a truck safely. From an ergonomics point of view, placing the step on all trucks will allow ALL employees (SHORT OR TALL)  to have a step for exiting the truck.  This will decrease the impact that would occur if they jump out of the truck without a step and decrese risk of foot, ankle, knee, hip and back injuries. Also, you may take a look to the American National Standards Institue for the type of guideline you are seeking.

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