The program utilized a participatory ergonomics approach involving all levels of the division's management and supervision, terminal and filling station personnel, and the truck drivers. Over the course of several years, many aspects of the system's organizational design and management structure and processes were examined from a macroergonomics perspective and, in some cases, modified. Employee-initiated ergonomic modifications were made to some of the equipment, new employee-designed safety training methods and structures were implemented, and employees were given a greater role in selecting new tools and equipment related to their jobs.
Two years after initial installation of the program, industrial injuries had been reduced by 54%, motor vehicle accidents by 51%, off-the-job injuries by 84%, and lost work days by 94%. By four years later, further reductions occurred for all but off-the-job injuries, which shrunk 15% to a 69% sustained improvement (Nagamachi & Imada, 1992).
The company's area manager of operations reports that he continues to save one-half of one percent of the annual petroleum delivery costs every year as a direct result of the macroergonomics intervention program. This amounts to a net savings of approximately $60,000 per year for the past three years, or $180,000, and is expected to continue (Andrew Imada, personal communication). Imada reports that perhaps the greatest
Contact: Lois Smith
Human Factors and Ergonomics Society