This image depicts an incorrect lifting technique. It is included in a Cal/OSHA Lifting Safer English/Spanish poster that shows safe lifting techniques for boxes, lumber, pipes, sheets and sacks.

Construction Ergonomics Guidance Offered in Spanish

NIOSH has translated "Simple Solutions – Ergonomics for Construction Workers" into Spanish to aid employers and workers.

"Soluciones Simples - Soluciones ergonómicas para trabajadores de la construcción" is the name of a booklet provided by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health to help employers and workers prevent musculoskeletal injuries in the construction industry, where lifting and repetitive motion injuries remain high.

Total lost-time injury and illness cases involving construction laborers decreased 8 percent from 2007 to 2008 to a total of 31,310, but the rate of 383 cases per 10,000 full-time workers was unchanged in that period, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported last month. And while the total number of musculoskeletal disorder lost-time cases fell in 2008 to 317,440, that figure represented 29 percent of all lost-time cases -- a percentage largely unchanged since 2005, BLS noted. Repetitive motion "continued to be the event with the highest median days away from work for all private industries with 18 days, two fewer days than in 2007," according to the BLS release. A related table showed 31,310 construction laborers suffered lost-time injuries or illnesses in 2008, with contact with an object or equipment being the leading cause (40 percent), followed by overexertion (19 percent).

The booklet includes background information on ergonomics and MSDs and 20 tip sheets describing tools and equipment that may help reduce these injuries. The booklet is a Spanish translation of "Simple Solutions – Ergonomics for Construction Workers" (NIOSH Pub. 2007-122).

"Soluciones Simples responds to employers' and workers' needs for practical guidance written for construction workers whose first and perhaps only language is Spanish," said NIOSH Director Dr. John Howard, a former Cal/OSHA director. "Preventing painful and sometimes disabling injuries from stressful or repetitive job tasks is a wise investment for the well-being of workers, their families, and businesses alike."

Single copy and bulk orders of the Spanish and English language versions of the booklet are available, but there is a limited supply. To request single copies or bulk orders, write to [email protected]. Individual copies of the English version may be ordered via http://wwwn.cdc.gov/pubs/niosh.aspx. Electronic editions of both versions are available here (Spanish) and here (English).

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