Variability in Skin Exposure in Machine Operators Exposed to Cutting Fluids
Journal article, 1998
Objective. This study describes a new technique for measuring skin exposure to cutting fluids and evaluates the variability of skin exposure among machine operators performing cyclic (repetitive) work. Methods.
The technique is based on video recording and subsequent analysis of the videotape by means of computer-synchronized video equipment. The time intervals at which the machine operator's hand was exposed to fluid were registered, and the total wet time of the skin was calculated by assuming different evaporation times for the fluid. The exposure of twelve operators with different work methods was analyzed in six different workshops, which included a range of machine types, from highly automated metal cutting machines (ie, actual cutting and chip removal machines) requiring operator supervision to conventional metal cutting machines, where the operator was required to maneuver the machine and manually exchange products.
Results; the relative wet time varied between 0% and 100%. A significant association between short cycle time and high relative wet time was noted. However, there was no relationship between the degree of automatization of the metal cutting machines and wet time. Conclusions. The study shows that skin exposure to cutting fluids can vary considerably between machine operators involved in manufacturing processes using different types of metal cutting machines. The machine type was not associated with dermal wetness. The technique appears to give objective information about dermal wetness.
A comment: This publication is a result of a cooperation between the authors at Chalmers University of Technology and Gothenburg University, i.e. between the Department of Transportation and the Department of Occupational Health and the Department of Sociology.
cross and multi-sciences approaches
manufacturing system design