West Chicago, IL (PRWEB) June 11, 2012
According to a March 2012 update on the industry by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, “Janitors and building cleaners have one of the highest work-related injury rates. Workers may suffer cuts, bruises, and burns from machines, tools, and chemicals.”
In addition, musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs), usually the result of ongoing lifting and carrying, awkward postures, repetitive motions, and equipment that is not ergonomically designed, are common problems in the industry, says Jolynn Kennedy, Director of Marketing for Tornado.
“Over the past decade, manufacturers in the industry have taken steps to make equipment that is lighter, quieter, easier to use, and safer,” says Kennedy. “However, this is an ongoing process that we must continue.”
Kennedy says that all aspects of cleaning, from dusting and vacuuming to refinishing floors, can be hazardous to cleaning workers.
“Because of this, throughout the month of June, we are going to be using our Facebook site (https://www.facebook.com/TornadoIndustries) to list cleaning risk factors and how they can be potentially resolved.”
For instance, one of the risk factors to be discussed involves vacuuming. The repetitive push/pull motion, typically with the same hand and arm, often leads to MSDs as well as emotional stress levels if the machine is loud.
“A possible solution is to consider [using] a canister vacuum with a long hose,” says Kennedy. “[Because] most of the weight is in the canister, the work does not require as much effort. And many of these machines are surprisingly quiet.”
Kennedy adds that the National Safety Council has designated each week in June to address a specific safety issue.* “Weeks 2 and 3 deal with ergonomics and slips, trips, and falls, which we will put special emphasis on. These are big concerns in the professional cleaning industry.”
*Week 1: employee wellness; Week 2: ergonomics; Week 3: slips, trips, and falls; Week 4: driving safety.