n Ergonomics SA : Journal of the Ergonomics Society of South Africa - Small & medium scale casting and forging industry in India : an ergonomic study

Volume 22, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 1010-2728



The industrial developmental potential for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and the growth prospects of the national economy of a country cannot be achieved without health and safety practices in the work place (Ahasan, 2002). The casting and forging sectors of the country constitute a considerable proportion of employment (Singh , 2010, www.indiaprwire.com). The present study explores the occupational health and safety and ergonomics issues in small and medium scale casting and forging units of northern India. In this cross-sectional study, a sample of 572 male workers of casting and forging units were involved in assessing the level of occupational health, safety and ergonomics practices in different processes. A comprehensive questionnaire was used to collect the qualitative data regarding work exposure, work schedules, posture, noise reaction, health complaints and addictions, use of personal protective equipment (PPE), and noise induced hearing loss (NIHL). The questionnaire was pretested before it was used. The ambient noise, temperature and dust exposure were assessed at different sections like; casting, moulding, forging, grinding, machining, and barreling. The results of the study revealed that 78% of the workers are not using PPE. Hence, the workers are exposed to high noise, temperature and dust. Occupational safety and ergonomics practices are almost missing in most of the processes. The majority of the workers reported musculoskeletal disorders, NIHL and overall health weakness. The study concluded that occupational health and safety is being ignored in these SMEs.

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