INITIAL ERGONOMIC RISK ASSESSMENT ON UNROLLING AND ROLLING FIRE HOSE ACTIVITY AMONG FIREFIGHTERS AT PUTRAJAYA FIRE AND RESCUE STATION
Mohd Afzal MAT KIAR 1, Mohd Nazri AHMAD SABAR 1, Mohamad Fitri Abdul Halim1, Dian D.I. DARUIS *2
1 Centre for Educational Extension, National University of Malaysia Bangi Selangor.Malaysia
2 Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, National Defense University of Malaysia, Sungai Besi, 57000 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
The purpose of this study is to identify the prevalence of Musculoskeletal Disorders (MSDs) for the activity of unrolling and rolling fire hose with manual handling before and after the fire-fighting operation and make an initial assessment to determine the level of ergonomic risk exposure faced by the firefighters in the cause of their work. A total of thirty (30) respondents comprising firefighters at the Putrajaya Fire and Rescue Station were involved in this study. Data were collected through interviews using the Cornell Musculoskeletal Questionnaire (CMQ), individual posture assessment using an Initial Ergonomic Risk Assessment Form as stated in the Workplace Ergonomic Risk Assessment Guidelines 2017, and field observation by recording the videos and pictures with some inputs added from the management. The results of the study revealed that 70% of the respondents suffered discomfort at the shoulder, 70% at the upper arm, 63% at the thigh, 76% at the knee, and 90% at the lower back. This result also shows that the ergonomic risk for that activity is contributing to the discomfort and pain of the firefighters. Preventive measures are needed to avoid problems in the future such as job rotation, fitness program and so on. In conclusion, the current unrolling and rolling fire hose activity among firefighters create various health and safety risks including ergonomic risks. This is because the activity involves manually lifting, lowering and awkward postures which lead to lower back pain. If the activity is not improved and no immediate intervention is implemented, the risk of MSDs will increase. In order to reduce the level of ergonomic risk exposure, top management of Malaysia Fire and Rescue Department is suggested to provide full cooperation and support to the formulated recommended actions.
Keywords: Ergonomic risk assessment; musculoskeletal disorders; unrolling and rolling fire hose activity; Malaysian firefighters