Fall Risk Factors for Commercial Truck DriversShorti RM1*, Merryweather AS1, Thiese MS2, Kapellusch J3, Garg A3 and Hegmann KT2
- *Corresponding Author:
- Shorti RM
Department of Mechanical Engineering, The University of Utah, USA
E-mail: [email protected]
Received Date: May 10, 2014; Accepted Date: July 10, 2014; Published Date: July 17, 2014
Citation: Shorti RM, Merryweather AS, Thiese MS, Kapellusch J, Garg A, et al. (2014) Fall Risk Factors for Commercial Truck Drivers. J Ergonomics S3:009. doi: 10.4172/2165-7556.S3-009
Copyright: © 2014 Shorti RM, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Background: Fall related injuries are common in the commercial trucking industry. Falls from three specific locations constitute 83% of reported falls: the back of truck/trailer, cargo handling and truck cab. Nearly one quarter of all injuries in truck drivers resulting in days away from work occur from mounting and dismounting a vehicle.
Purpose: This study aims to identify risk factors associated with falls and near falls among a population of commercial truck drivers.
Methods: Data from a large cross sectional study of 797 commercial truck drivers were analyzed. Questions about health and behavior were correlated with self-reported data regarding falls from mounting and dismounting activities. Self-reported factors believed to have contributed to a fall are also analyzed.
Results: Falls were reported by many truck drivers in this large, cross sectional study. Two thirds of drivers experiencing falls in the 12-month period prior to enrollment indicated that an environmental factor, e.g., ice, snow, mud influenced their fall and the majority of the falls occurred around the cab. The average BMI in this study population was 33.2 kg/m2 (SD=5.5), thus most drivers were obese. Self-reported health status and BMI were associated with higher odds of lifetime reported falls during both mounting and dismounting the cab. Other factors that were associated with falls included feeling mentally and physically exhausted.
Conclusion: This study’s findings suggest that truck, environmental conditions and personal factors are all significantly associated with reported falls during mounting and dismounting.