A visual ergonomics intervention in mail sorting facilities: Effects on eyes, muscles and productivity.

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Abstract

Visual requirements are high when sorting mail. The purpose of this visual ergonomics intervention study was to evaluate the visual environment in mail sorting facilities and to explore opportunities for improving the work situation by reducing visual strain, improving the visual work environment and reducing mail sorting time. Twenty-seven postmen/women participated in a pre-intervention study, which included questionnaires on their experiences of light, visual ergonomics, health, and musculoskeletal symptoms. Measurements of lighting conditions and productivity were also performed along with eye examinations of the postmen/women. The results from the pre-intervention study showed that the postmen/women who suffered from eyestrain had a higher prevalence of musculoskeletal disorders (MSD) and sorted slower, than those without eyestrain. Illuminance and illuminance uniformity improved as a result of the intervention. The two post-intervention follow-ups showed a higher prevalence of MSD among the postmen/women with eyestrain than among those without. The previous differences in sorting time for employees with and without eyestrain disappeared. After the intervention, the postmen/women felt better in general, experienced less work induced stress, and considered that the total general lighting had improved. The most pronounced decreases in eyestrain, MSD, and mail sorting time were seen among the younger participants of the group.

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Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Production Engineering, Human Work Science and Ergonomics
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)217-229
JournalApplied Ergonomics
Volume43
Publication statusPublished - 2012
Publication categoryResearch
Peer-reviewedYes