Ergonomics In The South African Mining Industry

Schutte, P. C.
Organization: The Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy
Pages: 4
Publication Date: Jan 1, 2005
Ergonomics is the scientific discipline concerned with the understanding of interactions among humans and other elements of a system, and the profession that applies theory, principles, data and methods to design in order to optimize human well-being and overall system performance. Despite the fact that the application of ergonomics principles can make a major contribution to the management of significant occupational safety and health risks, ergonomics is currently applied on a limited scale in the South African mining industry. The objective of this paper is to provide a perspective of ergonomics, the main aim being to create a point of departure for the development of strategic objectives to enhance existing health and safety initiatives through the application of sound ergonomics principles. Two of the major consequences of poor ergonomics, namely work-related musculoskeletal disorders and worker fatigue, and possible means of introducing ergonomics into the South African mining industry, are discussed.
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