Fall accidents (FAs) constitute a substantial proportion of construction accidents. While the predominant prevention strategy relies on passive approaches (e.g., guardrails), research on proactive measures is lacking, which may reduce the incidence of FAs in high-risk construction trades. Literature suggests that rebar work is one of the foremost FA-prone construction trades. Since rebar workers spend hours in rebar tying postures with periodic postural transitions, they hypothetically are at risk of posttask loss of balance. While recent research showed that a sitting stool could significantly alleviate physical discomfort during rebar tying, the current study aimed to investigate temporal changes in standing balance (using a force plate) after simulated rebar tying in squatting, stooping, and stool-sitting while the respective postural load during rebar tying was quantified by electromyography and oximeters. Results demonstrated that stool-sitting resulted significantly better posttask standing balance than squatting or stooping, which might be attributed to differential postural loadings. Overall, the findings reported herein underpin the importance of using safety informatics to proactively analyze task-specific fall hazards, to monitor workers’ balance, and to implement proper prevention strategies for workers at risk of falls.
|Number of pages||9|
|Journal||Journal of Construction Engineering and Management|
|Early online date||30 Jan 2018|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Apr 2018|