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CASE STUDIES

Bitumen Heat-In
TransitTrailer

The Electric Heat-In-Transit Tanker (bitumen trailer) revolutionised the design of bituminous tankers. The new tanker improves efficiency in transit, reduces risk for exposure to hot bituminous product and potentially explosive stored product, improves access for operation, reduces onroad travel time and subsequent fatigue, and challenged regulators to redefine safe transit requirements.
Removal of Asphalt
Paver Tyre

BEFORE: Removal of Asphalt Paver tyres are conducted up to four times per month. The task requires two people to manoeuver the 400kg tyre (filled with water), working near a forklift for transit.

AFTER: Implemented the use of a manual wheel trolley with clamp on top to secure the tyre, eliminating the manual manoeuvring and the need to work near the forklift.

Diesel
Bath Bucket

BEFORE: The diesel bath bucket is used in roadworks to contain diesel to clean asphalt debris from tools. Crew members complained about the awkwardness and the weight of the bucket. 

AFTER: A participative approach was undertaken and a new prototype bucket was developed that was of aluminium construction, raw weight of 17kg (almost half the original).

Sweeping Asphalt
Production Plant

BEFORE: Plant operators used long-handed standard brooms to sweep fine dust into loads that were shovelled into wheelbarrows and then lifted into bins. This took 4.5 hours of shift work and contributed to fatigue and neck pain.

AFTER: Through co-design, a commercially available manual push broom with circular brooms and hopper was used to reduce task time, wheelbarrow use, and poor positioning; and improve efficiency and task tolerance. ROI in two weeks, annual savings of $27K of wage time.

Indoor Environmental Quality and Sensory Processing

A request was received owing to examine office noise following a worker complaint of distractions in an open-plan office environment. Upon further investigation, the ergonomist advised an assessment of the individual and their sensory processing profile combined with gross environmental acoustics exposure screening, examination of other sensory stimuli within the work environment, productivity indices review, and analysis of job demands to inform strategies for work design and early intervention. The worker had low threshold tolerances of some sense-types and poor registration of hearing, causing anxiety.

Laying
Bitac tape

BEFORE: BiTac multi-laminate tape is used across structural joins in the asphalt mat, laid over many kilometres. A minimum 2-person task, while heavy lifting and walking backward awkwardly on roadworks project with mobile plant.

AFTER: A customised trolley was developed following a participative design process with workers, providing an efficient, health-conditioning task, enabling the worker to walk upright and forward-facing, with light pushing of the trolley.