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Poultry Processing Industry eTool

Tasks Evisceration

evisceration workers

The receiving and killing operation is a largely automated process in most poultry plants and includes receiving live birds, killing, scalding, defeathering, and removing feet. This operation includes the following tasks:

Task 1: Rehang

rehang

After the carcass has been removed from the kill line by cutting off the feet, it is lifted from a conveyor or shelf and rehung on shackles on the evisceration line for further processing.

Hazards of this task may include:

Hazardous Situation:

Employees bend and reach to lift chickens from supply conveyor and then reach out and away, sometimes above shoulder height, to place them on a shackle conveyor. Injuries to the shoulder, back, and neck are common due to awkward postures and high repetition. Employees at the beginning of the line often work faster than those near the end of the line because there is always a full supply of birds and all shackle positions are open.

Possible Solutions:

  • Minimize forward reaches by moving shackle conveyor towards employee.
  • Minimize vertical distance between shackles and belt conveyor to minimize bending to reach down to supply conveyor and elevated reaches to reach up to shackle conveyor.
  • Rotate employees up and down hanging line.
  • Install height-adjustable stands so employees can properly position themselves.

Hazardous Situation:

Standing for a long time reduces blood flow to the legs, forces isolated muscles to work for an extended time, and increases the risk of fatigue and varicose veins.

Possible Solutions:

  • Install sit/stand stools, which allow employees to lean and have their weight supported while still remaining in an upright posture.
  • Rotate to tasks that do not require prolonged standing.
  • Provide shoe insoles that cushion the feet and spread foot pressure over a larger surface.
  • Provide a foot rest in front of employees so they can shift their posture.

Task 2: Opener (Vent Opener)

vent opener

The opener uses scissors to manually cut open the bird. Most companies have eliminated this position by installing an automatic vent opener machine. Employees that serve as backup to the machine monitor the birds coming out of the machine and manually open any birds that may have been missed.

Hazards of this task may include:

Hazardous Situation:

Workers often use manual scissors that can cause ergonomic stress on the arms, hands, and fingers. Repeated opening of the jaws can irritate and inflame the tendons and sheaths of the hand. This is especially a problem if employees are positioned either too high or low in relation to the bird, such that the wrist is bent while finger force is exerted. The tendon and sheath can experience contact damage as they are pulled across the bones and ligaments of the wrist. Contact between the loop handles of the scissors and the sides of the fingers can damage nerves and blood vessels.

Possible Solutions:

Hazardous Situation:

Workers are required to repeatedly reach to the shackles to access the bird so that various tasks can be performed. Reaching creates stress on the arms, shoulders, neck, and back because the weight of the arm and scissors must be supported./p>

Possible Solutions:

  • Lower shackles and/or move them closer to employees so they can perform task with elbows in close to body.
  • Install height-adjustable stands so employees can properly position themselves.
  • Install automatic machines and make sure they are working properly.
  • Rotate workers to tasks that use different parts of the body or that work at a slower pace.

Hazardous Situation:

Standing for a long time reduces blood flow to the legs, forces isolated muscles to work for an extended time, and increases risk of fatigue and varicose veins.

Possible Solutions:

  • Install sit/stand stools, which allow employees to lean and have their weight supported while still remaining in an upright posture.
  • Rotate to tasks that do not require prolonged standing.
  • Provide shoe insoles that cushion the feet and spread foot pressure over a larger surface.
  • Provide a foot rest in front of employees so they can shift their posture.

Task 3: Neck Breaker

The neck breaker uses a knife to cut the neck of the bird. Most companies have eliminated this position by installing an automatic neck breaking machine. Employees serve as backup to this machine.

Hazards of this task may include:

Hazardous Situation:

Standing for a long time reduces blood flow to the legs, forces isolated muscles to work for an extended time, and increases risk of fatigue and varicose veins.

Possible Solutions:

  • Install sit/stand stools, which allow employees to lean and have their weight supported while still remaining in an upright posture.
  • Rotate to tasks that do not require prolonged standing. 
  • Provide shoe insoles that cushion the feet and spread foot pressure over a larger surface.
  • Provide a foot rest in front of employees so they can shift their posture.

Hazardous Situation:

Neck Breakers perform various tasks by reaching repeatedly to the shackles. Reaching creates stress on the arms, shoulders, neck, and back.

Possible Solutions:

  • Lower shackles and/or move them closer to employees so they can perform the task with elbows in close to body.
  • Install height-adjustable stands so employees can properly position themselves.
  • Install automatic machines and ensure they are working properly.
  • Rotate workers to tasks that use different parts of the body or that work at a slower pace.

Hazardous Situation:

Workers use a knife to cut the neck away from the body. The cutting motion may entail some bending of the wrist. Factors such as poorly fitting gloves, slick handles, inappropriately sized handles, or dull knives increase the force that must be used. Finger force and bending the wrist are recognized risk factors for developing many hand injuries; minimize these factors when performing cutting tasks.

Possible Solutions:

  • Keep knives sharp and in good condition.
  • Remove damaged knives from service.
  • Use knives appropriate for the task.
  • Keep the wrist as straight as possible during the cutting task.
  • Provide properly sized gloves.

Task 4: Oil Sack Cutter

The oil sack cutter cuts the oil sack from the birds. Most companies have eliminated this position by installing an automatic opening machine. Employees that serve as backup to the machine walk back and forth monitoring the procedure.

Hazards of this task may include:

Hazardous Situation:

Standing for a long time reduces blood flow to the legs, forces isolated muscles to work for an extended time, and increases risk of fatigue and varicose veins.

Possible Solutions:

  • Install sit/stand stools, which allow employees to lean and have their weight supported while still remaining in an upright posture.
  • Rotate workers to tasks that do not require prolonged standing.
  • Provide shoe insoles that cushion the feet and spread foot pressure over a larger surface.
  • Provide a foot rest in front of employees so they can shift their posture.

Hazardous Situation:

Workers perform various oil sack cutter tasks by reaching repeatedly to the shackles. Reaching creates stress on the arms, shoulders, neck, and back.

Possible Solutions:

  • Lower shackles and/or move them closer to employees so they can perform the task with elbows in close to body.
  • Install height-adjustable stands so employees can properly position themselves.
  • Install automatic machines and ensure they are working properly.
  • Rotate workers to tasks that use different parts of the body or that work at a slower pace.

Hazardous Situation:

Workers use a knife to cut the oil sack. The cutting motion may entail bending the wrist. Factors such as poorly fitting gloves, slick handles, inappropriately sized handles, or dull knives increase the force that must be used. Finger force and bending of the wrist are recognized risk factors for developing many hand injuries; minimize these factors when performing cutting tasks.

Possible Solutions:

  • Keep knives sharp and in good condition.
  • Remove damaged knives from service.
  • Use knives appropriate for the task.
  • Keep the wrist as straight as possible during the cutting task.
  • Provide properly sized gloves.

Task 5: Arranger

The arranger, also called the presenter, removes the viscera from the body cavity and arranges them for USDA inspection. The initial removal is often accomplished by the automatic vent opening machine.

Hazards of this task may include:

Hazardous Situation:

Worker repeatedly pulls the viscera from the body cavity with fingers and twists the forearm to present them for inspection. This process causes potential injury to both the wrist and elbow. The more the wrist is bent during this process, the greater the risk of injury.

Possible Solutions:

  • Install height-adjustable stands so employees can adjust their work height to keep wrist as straight as possible.
  • Rotate employees to tasks that require motions using different body parts or that work at a different pace.
  • Tilt bird to minimize wrist deviation.

Hazardous Situation:

Workers perform various arranger tasks reaching repeatedly to the shackles. Reaching creates stress on the arms, shoulders, neck, and back.

Possible Solutions:

  • Lower shackles and/or move them closer to employees so they can perform task with elbows in close to body.
  • Install height-adjustable stands so employees can properly position themselves.
  • Install automatic machines and make sure they are working properly.
  • Rotate workers to tasks that use different parts of the body or that work at a slower pace.

Hazardous Situation:

Standing for a long time reduces blood flow to the legs, forces isolated muscles to work for an extended time, and increases risk of fatigue and varicose veins.

Possible Solutions:

  • Install sit/stand stools, which allow employees to lean and have their weight supported while still remaining in an upright posture.
  • Rotate workers to tasks that do not require prolonged standing.
  • Provide shoe insoles that cushion the feet and spread foot pressure over a larger surface.
  • Provide a foot rest in front of employees so they can shift their posture.

Task 6: Giblet Harvester

The giblet harvester separates the heart, liver, and gizzard from the rest of the viscera and positions them to be cut by a saw. The heart, liver, and gizzard then fall to a wash table where an initial cleaning is performed and they are directed for further processing.

Hazards of this task may include:

Hazardous Situation:

Workers are required to repeatedly reach to the shackles to access the bird so various tasks can be performed. Reaching creates stress on the arms, shoulders, neck, and back.

Possible Solutions:

  • Lower shackles and/or move them closer to employees so they can perform the task with elbows in close to the body.
  • Install height-adjustable stands so employees can properly position themselves.
  • Install automatic machines and make sure they are working properly.
  • Rotate workers to tasks that use different parts of the body or that work at a slower pace.

Hazardous Situation:

Standing for a long time reduces blood flow to the legs, forces isolated muscles to work for extended periods of time, and increases risk of fatigue and varicose veins.

Possible Solutions:

  • Install sit/stand stools, which allow employees to lean and have their weight supported while still remaining in an upright posture.
  • Rotate workers to tasks that do not require prolonged standing.
  • Provide shoe insoles that cushion the feet and spread foot pressure over a larger surface.
  • Provide a foot rest in front of employees so they can shift their posture.

Task 7: Gizzard Harvester

The giblet harvester separates the heart, liver, and gizzard from the rest of the viscera and positions them to be cut by a saw. The heart, liver, and gizzard then fall to a wash table where an initial cleaning is performed and they are directed for further processing.

Hazards of this task may include:

Hazardous Situation:

Employees repeatedly reach across a conveyor or work table to obtain product for processing. Repetitive reaching stresses the shoulder and upper back and may require bending at the waist, which can stress the lower back.

Possible Solutions:

  • Use diverter bars to push product closer to employee.
  • Reduce width of table so product is presented closer to employee.
  • Position work fixtures so all activities of the task can be performed with the elbows in close to the torso.
  • Tilt work surface so product slides to employee.

Hazardous Situation:

Workers use a knife to perform some trimming and cleaning functions. Most knives have a straight, in-line design. Using this type of knife on a horizontal cutting surface forces employees to bend their wrists to perform the cut. Bending the wrist while exerting finger force is stressful to the tendons and muscles of the hand and forearm. Factors such as poorly fitting gloves, slick handles, inappropriately sized handles, or dull knives increase the force that must be used. Finger force and bending the wrist should be minimized when performing cutting tasks.

Possible Solutions:

  • Keep knives sharp and in good condition.
  • Remove damaged knives from service.
  • Use knives appropriate for the task.
  • Provide properly sized gloves.

Hazardous Situation:

Workers often use manual scissors that can cause ergonomic stress on the arms, hands, and fingers. Repeated opening of the jaws can irritate and inflame the tendons and sheaths of the hand. This is especially a problem if employees are positioned either too high or low in relation to the bird, such that the wrist is bent while finger force is exerted. The tendon and sheath can experience contact damage as they are pulled across the bones and ligaments of the wrist. Contact between the loop handles of the scissors and the sides of the fingers can damage nerves and blood vessels.

Possible Solutions:

Hazardous Situation:

Standing for a long time reduces blood flow to the legs, forces isolated muscles to work for an extended time, and increases risk of fatigue and varicose veins.

Possible Solutions:

  • Install sit/stand stools, which allow employees to lean and have their weight supported while still remaining in an upright posture.
  • Rotate workers to tasks that do not require prolonged standing.
  • Provide shoe insoles that cushion the feet and spread foot pressure over a larger surface.
  • Provide a foot rest in front of employees so they can shift their posture.

Task 8: Gizzard Table Operator

Gizzard table operators manually trim and clean gizzards. They then place gizzards in an automatic splitting machine so they are opened up and washed when they reach the gizzard peeler station.

Hazards of this task may include:

Hazardous Situation:

Employees repeatedly reach across a conveyor or work table to obtain product for processing. Repetitive reaching stresses the shoulder and upper back and may require bending at the waist that can stress the lower back.

Possible Solutions:

  • Use diverter bars to push product closer to employee.
  • Reduce width of table so product is presented closer to employee.
  • Position work fixtures so all activities of the task can be performed with the elbows in close to the torso.
  • Tilt work surface so product slides to employee.

Hazardous Situation:

Workers use a knife to perform some trimming and cleaning functions. Most knives have a straight, in-line design. Using this type of knife on a horizontal cutting surface forces employees to bend their wrists to perform the cut. Bending the wrist while exerting finger force is stressful to the tendons and muscles of the hand and forearm. Factors such as poorly fitting gloves, slick handles, inappropriately sized handles, or dull knives increase the force that must be used. Finger force and bending of the wrist should be minimized when performing cutting tasks.

Possible Solutions:

  • Keep knives sharp and in good condition.
  • Remove damaged knives from service.
  • Use knives appropriate for the task.
  • Provide properly sized gloves.

Hazardous Situation:

Workers often use manual scissors that can cause ergonomic stress on the arms, hands, and fingers. Repeated opening of the jaws can irritate and inflame the tendons and sheaths of the hand. This is especially a problem if employees are positioned either too high or low in relation to the bird, such that the wrist is bent while finger force is exerted. The tendon and sheath can experience contact damage as they are pulled across the bones and ligaments of the wrist. Contact between the loop handles of the scissors and the sides of the fingers can damage nerves and blood vessels.

Possible Solutions:

Hazardous Situation:

Standing for a long time reduces blood flow to the legs, forces isolated muscles to work for an extended time, and increases risk of fatigue and varicose veins.

Possible Solutions:

  • Install sit/stand stools, which allow employees to lean and have their weight supported while still remaining in an upright posture.
  • Rotate employees to tasks that do not require prolonged standing.
  • Provide shoe insoles that cushion the feet and spread foot pressure over a larger surface.
  • Provide a foot rest in front of employees so they can shift their posture.

Task 9: Gizzard Table-peeler Operator

Gizzard Table-peeler Operator

Employee presses the inside of gizzard against a rotating drum with a raspy surface that peels the inner lining from the gizzard. Employee feeds peeled gizzards to bagging area.

Hazards of this task may include:

Hazardous Situation:

As workers move gizzards over peeler, fingers may get caught in rollers.

Possible Solutions:

  • Prohibit employees from wearing long sleeves, gloves, or jewelry.
  • Provide cutoff switch in immediate vicinity of operator.

Hazardous Situation:

Employees repeatedly reach to pull product to the peeler. Repetitive reaching stresses the shoulder and upper back.

Possible Solutions:

  • Use diverter bars to push product closer to employee.
  • Reduce width of table so product is presented closer to employee.
  • Position work fixtures so all activities of the task can be performed with the elbows in close to the torso.
  • Tilt work surface so product slides to employee.

Hazardous Situation:

Standing for a long time reduces blood flow to the legs, forces isolated muscles to work for an extended time, and increases risk of fatigue and varicose veins.

Possible Solutions:

  • Install sit/stand stools, which allow employees to lean and have their weight supported while still remaining in an upright posture.
  • Rotate employees to tasks that do not require prolonged standing.
  • Provide shoe insoles that cushion the feet and spread foot pressure over a larger surface.
  • Provide a foot rest in front of employees so they can shift their posture.

Hazardous Situation:

Employees use finger force to press gizzards against rotating drums for the majority of the task. Significant finger force must be exerted since the product is small and slippery. The wrist is usually bent during this process to place gizzards in the proper alignment. Exerting finger force for a prolonged time can stretch and fray tendons. Bending the wrist while exerting finger force can create further damage to tendons and their sheath, which can lead to injuries of the hand, wrist, and elbow.

Possible Solutions:

  • Rotate employees to tasks that use different body parts or motions.
  • Align peeler to reposition employee to minimize wrist bending.
  • Maintain machine so it works at maximum efficiency.

Task 10: Heart and Liver Cutter/Inspector

An employee washes and visually inspects hearts and livers before they are sent to the bagging station.

Hazards of this task may include:

Hazardous Situation:

Employees repeatedly reach across a conveyor or work table to obtain product for processing. Repetitive reaching stresses the shoulder and upper back and may require bending at the waist, which can stress the lower back.

Possible Solutions:

  • Use diverter bars to push product closer to employee.
  • Reduce width of table so product is presented closer to employee.
  • Position work fixtures so all activities of the task can be performed with the elbows in close to the torso.
  • Tilt work surface so product slides to employee.

Hazardous Situation:

Employees use in-line, straight knives to clean and trim. Using this type of knife on a horizontal cutting surface forces the employees to bend their wrists to perform the cut. Bending the wrist while exerting finger force is stressful to the tendons and muscles of the hand and forearm. Factors such as poorly fitting gloves, slick handles, inappropriately sized handles, or dull knives increase the force that must be used. Finger force and bending of the wrist should be minimized when performing cutting tasks.

Possible Solutions:

  • Keep knives sharp and in good condition.
  • Remove damaged knives from service.
  • Use knives appropriate for the task.
  • Provide properly sized gloves.

Hazardous Situation:

Workers often use manual scissors that can cause ergonomic stress on the arms, hands, and fingers. Repeated opening of the jaws can irritate and inflame the tendons and sheaths of the hand. This is especially a problem if employees are positioned either too high or low in relation to the bird, such that the wrist is bent while finger force is exerted. The tendon and sheath can experience contact damage as they are pulled across the bones and ligaments of the wrist. Contact between the loop handles of the scissors and the sides of the fingers can damage nerves and blood vessels.

Possible Solutions:

Hazardous Situation:

Standing for a long time reduces blood flow to the legs, forces isolated muscles to work for an extended time, and increases risk of fatigue and varicose veins.

Possible Solutions:

  • Install sit/stand stools, which allow employees to lean and have their weight supported while still remaining in an upright posture.
  • Rotate employees to tasks that do not require prolonged standing.
  • Provide shoe insoles that cushion the feet and spread foot pressure over a larger surface.
  • Provide a foot rest in front of employees so they can shift their posture.

Task 11: Bagger

Bagger

A bagger bulk packs hearts, livers, or gizzards into various sized bags before the bags are placed into boxes for shipment. Baggers may also repack giblets (heart, liver, gizzard, neck) into small paper bags for reinsertion into body cavity of whole birds. Some operations also require these employees to move the filled bag to a sealer where the bag is closed with a clip or heat seal.

Hazards of this task may include:

Hazardous Situation:

Employees secure and hold bags using a one- or two-finger pinch grip when removing it from the bagging fixture, transporting it to the bag sealer, and feeding it into the bag sealer. Using pinch grip places significant stress on the tendons of the fingers, which can lead to injuries of the hand, wrist and forearm.

Possible Solutions:

  • Rotate to those jobs that use different motions and postures.
  • Use automatic bag sealers.
  • Reposition bagging fixtures and sealer heights vertically so the bag can be slid, rather than lifted, between these areas.

Hazardous Situation:

Employees repeatedly reach to bins or across table tops to obtain product for bagging and place product in bags. Repetitive reaching stresses the shoulder and upper back.

Possible Solutions:

  • Use diverter bars to push product closer to employee.
  • Reduce width of table so product is presented closer to employee.
  • Tilt work surface so product slides to employee.
  • Position bagging fixtures, bags, scales, and supplies of product so employees may maintain neutral postures. Bagging fixture should be low enough so employee's elbows can remain in at the side of the body.

Hazardous Situation:

Standing for a long time reduces blood flow to the legs, forces isolated muscles to work for an extended time, and increases risk of fatigue and varicose veins.

Possible Solutions:

  • Install sit/stand stools, which allow employees to lean and have their weight supported while still remaining in an upright posture.
  • Rotate employees to tasks that do not require prolonged standing.
  • Provide shoe insoles that cushion the feet and spread foot pressure over a larger surface.
  • Provide a foot rest in front of employees so they can shift their posture.

Task 12: Lung Vacuumer

Bagger

A lung vacuumer uses a small suction device to remove the lungs and the kidneys from the body cavity.

Hazards of this task may include:

Hazardous Situation:

Worker must bend wrist and/or pull elbow away from the body to position vacuum into body cavity to remove the lungs and kidneys.

Possible Solutions:

  • Install automatic machines.
  • Install height-adjustable stands.
  • Bend vacuum nozzle to maintain straight wrist and elbow close to the body.
  • Redesign handle and actuator trigger so vacuuming can be performed with straight wrist and elbow close to the body.
  • Reposition bird.
  • Rotate workers to tasks that use different parts of the body.

Hazardous Situation:

Workers are required to reach to the shackles to access the bird, thus causing ergonomic stress on the arms, shoulders, neck, and back.

Possible Solutions:

  • Lower shackles so employees can perform task with elbows in close to the body.
  • Install height-adjustable stands so employees can position themselves to minimize awkward postures.
  • Install automatic machines and insure they are working properly.
  • Rotate workers to tasks that use different parts of the body or use different motions.

Hazardous Situation:

Standing for a long time reduces blood flow to the legs, forces isolated muscles to work for an extended time, and increases risk of fatigue and varicose veins.

Possible Solutions:

  • Install sit/stand stools, which allow employees to lean and have their weight supported while still remaining in an upright posture.
  • Rotate employees to tasks that do not require prolonged standing.
  • Provide shoe insoles that cushion the feet and spread foot pressure over a larger surface.
  • Provide a foot rest in front of employees so they can shift their posture.

Task 13: Backup Eviscerator/Inspector

Back-up Eviscerator/Inspector

The backup eviscerator is a final product inspector who feels inside the carcass and looks for any remaining pieces of viscera before removing of the carcass from the shackle.

Hazards of this task may include:

Hazardous Situation:

Workers access birds by reaching to the shackles thus causing ergonomic stress on the arms, shoulders, neck, and back.

Possible Solutions:

  • Lower shackles so employees can perform task with elbows in close to the body.
  • Install height-adjustable stands so employees can position themselves to minimize awkward postures.
  • Install automatic machines and insure they are working properly.
  • Rotate workers to tasks that use different parts of the body or use different motions.

Hazardous Situation:

When employees are too low in relation to the bird, they must reach up to access the body cavity resulting in wrist bending. This can result in tendon and nerve damage, leading to pain and numbness in the hand, wrist, or elbow.

Possible Solutions:

  • Install height-adjustable stands so employees can be raised up to minimize wrist bending.
  • Tilt birds for better access.
  • Install automatic machines.
  • Rotate workers to tasks that use different parts of the body or use different motions.

Hazardous Situation:

Standing for a long time reduces blood flow to the legs, forces isolated muscles to work for an extended time, and increases risk of fatigue and varicose veins.

Possible Solutions:

  • Install sit/stand stools, which allow employees to lean and have their weight supported while still remaining in an upright posture.
  • Rotate employees to tasks that do not require prolonged standing.
  • Provide shoe insoles that cushion the feet and spread foot pressure over a larger surface.
  • Provide a foot rest in front of employees so they can shift their posture.

Support Task: Rework Floor Person

A rework floor person manually reworks damaged or improperly processed items. This may include trimming, washing, and salvaging parts. Often, employees receive work from tubs and then replace them onto the shackle.

Hazards of this task may include:

Hazardous Situation:

Repeatedly bending forward and reaching out away from the body stresses the back even if there is little being lifted because the upper body must be supported. When loads are being lifted, bending over at the waist increases the distance the load is held away from the body and increases the stress placed on the back.

Possible Solutions:

  • Automate the movement of product to rework areas so reaching into tubs is not necessary.
  • Use a tilter dumper to elevate and tilt so the contents are continually moved forward toward the employee and are maintained at about waist height at all times.
  • Use a tub dumper at the workstation to empty contents on the conveyor.

Hazardous Situation:

Workers must reach to the shackles to place reworked product for further processing. Reaching creates stress on the arms, shoulders, neck, and back.

Possible Solutions:

  • Install height-adjustable stands so employees can properly position themselves.
  • Install automatic machines and insure they are working properly.
  • Rotate workers to tasks that use different parts of the body or that work at a slower pace.

Hazardous Situation:

Workers use a knife to perform some trimming and cleaning functions. Most knives have a straight, in-line design. Using this type of knife on a horizontal cutting surface forces the employees to bend their wrists to perform the cut. Bending the wrist while exerting finger force is stressful to the tendons and muscles of the hand and forearm. Factors such as poorly fitting gloves, slick handles, inappropriately sized handles, or dull knives increase the force that must be used. Minimize finger force and bending of the wrist when performing cutting tasks.

Possible Solutions:

  • Keep knives sharp and in good condition.
  • Remove damaged knives from service.
  • Use knives appropriate for the task
  • Provide properly sized gloves.

Hazardous Situation:

Workers may use scissors to trim and clean product. Scissors can cause ergonomic stress on the hands and fingers, which results in nerve and tendon damage to the hand and forearm.

Possible Solutions:

Hazardous Situation:

Employees repeatedly reach across a conveyor or work table to obtain product for processing. Repetitive reaching stresses the shoulder and upper back, and may require bending at the waist, which can stress the lower back.

Possible Solutions:

  • Use diverter bars to push product closer to employee.
  • Reduce width of table so product is presented closer to employee.
  • Position work fixtures so all activities of the task can be performed with the elbows in close to the torso.
  • Tilt work surface so product slides to employee.

Support Task: Ice Attendant

Ice Attendants

The ice attendant manually brings ice from the ice house to the packing line, paw room, and other areas as needed. Usually, the ice is transported in tubs.

Hazards of this task may include:

Hazardous Situation:

Workers are standing on wet floors that may have bird skin, bird parts, and ice on them, creating a slipping hazard. Metal drain covers on the floor are also very slippery and pose a hazard. A falling worker may contact dangerous equipment.

Possible Solutions:

  • Cover drains with non-slip grating.
  • Provide workers with non-slip footwear and require its use.
  • Paint floors with slip-resistant paint or install non-slip floor tile.
  • Provide guardrails at workstations adjacent to dangerous equipment to prevent injury.
tugs

Hazardous Situation:

Employees manually push tubs of ice. Pushing tubs, especially when on slick or icy floors, stresses the back, shoulder, ankle, and knee.

Possible Solutions:

  • Provide tugs or mechanical assists where heavy loads must be moved using tubs.
  • Maintain tubs in proper working condition to minimize the amount of pushing force that must be exerted.
  • Use conveyors or augers to mechanically move ice.
  • Keep floors clean and free of obstructions.

Hazardous Situation:

Employees support a load that can easily weigh 15 pounds from the end of a shovel handle. In a manner similar to that encountered on a child's teeter totter, leverage can increase the effect of this load by 2 to 4 times depending on the length of the shovel handle. Additionally employees may need to repeatedly bend at the waist to scoop from the bottom of the tubs and may need to lift ice above head height. The back and shoulders can be negatively affected by these motions.

Possible Solutions:

  • Develop a mechanical means, such as conveyors or augers, to move ice around the plant.
  • Provide tub dumpers to mechanically unload tubs of ice.
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