Indicator for urgency assessment in ergonomic intervention of wood harvesting machines

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Many studies on ergonomics in forestry operations are punctual and assess ergonomic variables in isolation, with each result being obtained on a specific scale. Thus, the objective of this study was to improve an ergonomic indicator through a classification according to the urgency of the ergonomic intervention, to improve its practicality of application in forest harvesting machines. This research was carried out in planted forests of a company in Southern Brazil, and based on ergonomic evaluations of a feller buncher, a skidder, a forest processor, harvesters, and forwarder machines during the day and night shifts. Vibration, noise, heat, illumination, repeatability, postures, and visibility angles were measured. The results of the ergonomic assessments were standardized by adapting the ergonomic Degree of Compliance (V) method calculated with the legislation norms, having a value between 0 and 1, and the higher the value, the greater the compliance with effective norms and guidelines. It was proposed to classify the degree of ergonomic urgency in different colors. The skidder showed the worst degrees of compliance, requiring emergency corrective measures, with an emphasis on vibrations (V 0.0 and 0.1), noise (V 0.2) and visibility in the lateral plane (V 0.0) in both shifts worked due to shocks and bumps in the machine’s movements and visibility difficulty in the operation, in addition to illumination (V 0.6) at night and heat (V 0.8) in the daytime. The forestry processor showed the best ergonomic performance without any urgencies but emphasizing care with noise (V 0.7 and 0.8) and the daily dose of vibration (V 0.8 and 0.7) in both shifts. The classification by a color scale made it possible to better interpret the indicators and facilitate the practical application of corrective ergonomic interventions.




de Oliveira, F. M., Lopes, E. da S., Fiedler, N. C., & Koehler, H. S. (2020). Indicator for urgency assessment in ergonomic intervention of wood harvesting machines. Revista Arvore, 44, 1–10.

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