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The findings of a scientific study suggest some safety guidelines for workers carrying out maintenance or repairs on industrial machines operating in reduced speed and force mode (i.e., reduced energy). Section 189.1 (previously 186) of the Quebec Regulation respecting occupational health and safety (ROHS) provides a regulatory framework designed to prevent situations in which moving parts can cause serious or even fatal occupational injuries. Nevertheless, the provision does not indicate any specific speed, force, contact pressure or energy values to be met. The researchers began their study by assessing current knowledge about these values. They then visited 9 companies and studied 16 situations involving work on machines in order to understand how companies go about applying ROHS section 189.1.
Hypothenar Hammer Syndrome (HHS) is an insidious disease that can be easily confused with other disorders, such as hand-arm vibration syndrome or Raynaud’s disease, which are also characterized by blanched fingers. To alert employers and workers, the Institut de recherche Robert-Sauvé en santé et en sécurité du travail has published an information pamphlet entitled Recognizing Hypothenar Hammer Syndrome.
Every year, immigrant workers enter Québec’s labour force, thus changing the demographic and ethnocultural composition of workplaces. In order to better understand the employment characteristics of immigrants that could have implications for preventing occupational injuries, the researchers from the Institut de recherche Robert-Sauvé en santé et en sécurité du travail (IRSST) analyzed quantitative studies that documented the distinctive features of work performed by immigrants and the risks to their health and safety. The authors also analyzed the content of population surveys that could provide information on the risks to the OHS of immigrant workers.