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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2021

Physical workload and psychosocial working conditions in Swedish pig transport drivers

Wilhelmsson, Sofia; Andersson, Maria; Arvidsson, Inger; Dahlqvist, Camilla; Hemsworth, Paul H.; Yngvesson, Jenny; Hultgren, Jan

Abstract

Working conditions of 20 Swedish pig transport drivers (PTD) were assessed by a questionnaire, a workshop, and recorded postures and movements during on-farm loading, driving, unloading at abattoir and vehicle cleaning. High arm positions and high frequencies of shoulder problems indicated an excessive physical load on shoulders. Extreme crouching postures inside vehicles and high frequencies of lower back problems indicated high load on the back of PTDs. Inadequate design of on-farm loading areas was associated with knee discomfort. Observed variation in workload between PTDs could be explained by differences in physical working environment and pig handling practices. PTDs reported high job satisfaction and commitment although conflicts with farmers and official veterinarians, as well as regulatory conflicts were emphasized. We conclude that issues of inadequate farm and abattoir facilities, stakeholder conflicts and insufficient training in animal handling need to be addressed to ensure sustainable PTD working conditions.

Keywords

Occupational exposure; Physical; Psychosocial; Velocity; Movement; Handling; Pigs; Preslaughter transport

Published in

International Journal of Industrial Ergonomics
2021, volume: 83, article number: 103124
Publisher: ELSEVIER

Authors' information

Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Animal Environment and Health
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Animal Environment and Health
Arvidsson, Inger
Lund University
Dahlqvist, Camilla
Lund University
Hemsworth, Paul H.
University of Melbourne
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Animal Environment and Health
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Animal Environment and Health

Sustainable Development Goals

SDG8 Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all

UKÄ Subject classification

Production Engineering, Human Work Science and Ergonomics

Publication Identifiers

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ergon.2021.103124

URI (permanent link to this page)

https://res.slu.se/id/publ/112512