Ergonomic Criteria in the Investigation of Indirect Causes of Accidents

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Guidelines on ergonomic deficiencies may be derived from accident reports which commonly name employees as being directly at fault (direct causes of accident). The root causes of accidents found of significance for prevention purposes include the misalignment of workstations with the psychophysical capabilities of workers. Such causes lead to the engagement of ergonomists. Accident analysis tools and detailed specifications of direct accident causes have been used to develop a concept of a method for identifying ergonomic deficiencies. The accident investigation methods and tools used to classify accident causes by means of specified criteria make it possible to identify ergonomic deficiencies at each stage of assessment. The author has additionally described a concept of an expert system which supports the investigation of occupational accidents from the ergonomic standpoint. The accident investigation methods identified in this paper are TOL, Job Safety Analysis (JSA), “What if …”, FMEA, STEP, OARU (Occupational Accident Research Unit), FTA, the Ishikawa Diagram, the energy transfer method, “4xwhy”, MORT, KIK, WAIT (Work Accident Investigation Technique), as well as the ILCI and TRIPOD models. A concept has also been offered for using network methods to establish a hierarchy of ergonomic incompliances.




Dahlke, G. (2015). Ergonomic Criteria in the Investigation of Indirect Causes of Accidents. Procedia Manufacturing, 3, 4868–4875.

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