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Success with Ergonomics
Colby College

 
State: Maine
   
Company: Colby College
Waterville, ME
   
Industry: Educational Institution - SIC Code: 82
   
Employees: 650

 
Success Brief: Three years after being invited to join the Maine 200 program this institution’s ergonomics program had reduced their lost work-day injury rate and total lost work-days by over 95 percent. Their workers' compensation insurance costs had decreased by over $100,000 per year.
 

The Problem
 
In 1993 the high levels of occupational injuries (primarily musculoskeletal) experienced by Colby College led to an invitation for them to partner with OSHA in a voluntary effort to reduce these injuries.

The Solution
 
They established an ergonomics assessment and implementation team to analyze their injury and illness data and identify when, where, and how their injuries were occurring. The ergonomic concerns they identified were addressed with job redesigns, equipment changes, training, and warm-up exercise programs. They stressed employee involvement in all phases of their program.

The Impact
 
Three years after being invited to join the Maine 200 program, the institution's ergonomics program had reduced their lost work-day injury rate and total lost work-days by over 95 percent. Their workers' compensation insurance costs had decreased by over $100,000 per year. In 2002, Colby’s ergonomics program continues to help keep lost time injuries and their associated costs low. A workers’ compensation mod factor of .52 means that money formerly spent on insurance premiums now goes to the College’s bottom line.

 
Source: OSHA case files; Updated October 2002, Bruce McDougal, CSP, Director of Safety, Colby College.

 

 

 
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