WORKPLACE ACCIDENTS AMONG SKI AREA EMPLOYEES

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1 WORKPLACE ACCIDENTS AMONG SKI AREA EMPLOYEES Dr Bernat Escoda Centre Mèdic Pas de la Casa - Grau Roig ANDORRA SITEMSH Congress Flachau 2014 Friday, Nov 28 - Session 4: epidemiology and severe injuries

2 INTRODUCTION Concern for skiers safety is a long time priority for ski resorts, but its evident that employees are also exposed to specific risks - Specific environment (altitude, extreme temperatures) - Installations and machines (lifts, grooming vehicles, helicopters, cranes) - Natural or artificial hazards (avalanches, explosives)

3 INTRODUCTION Since a report on workplace accidents and diseases is anualy presented to the direction, with diferent indicators: Incidence rate: accidents/disease related to total workers Frequency rate: accidents/disease related to the total number of work hours Lose rate: number of lost working days/100 workers Mean leave duration: working days loosed/number of accidents in this period

4 ACCIDENT / DISEASE RATES LAST SEASON: 5.6 accidents per 100 workers accidents per work hours lost working days per 100 workers (in a year) mean leave duration

5 ACCIDENT / DISEASE RATES LAST SEASON: 3533 working days were lost: - 63% working accident - 33% disease - 4% maternity (774 lost working days correspond to accidents occured the precedent season)

6 WORKPLACE Last season: 680 employees, - 11% are direction or office employees, - 41% ski school employees - 27% ski patrols, lift operators, grooming machine drivers - 21% bar/ restaurant employees

7 WORKPLACE Last season: 680 employees, - 11% are direction or office employees, - 41% ski instructors - 27% ski patrols, lift operators, grooming machine drivers - 21% bar / restaurant employees

8 SEASONALITY - Only 15% are permanent employees - 85% are seasonal employees Is that a problem?

9 ACC / DISEASE BY DAY The incidence of accidents / diseases is higher on sunday!?!? - burn-out after Saturday rush? - Hang-over?

10 TYPE OF INJURIES 34% sprains - 36% contusions - 30% other

11 INJURED REGION Knee 22% / Hand 15% / Low Back 12% / Leg Ankle F 12% Thorax 12% / Wrist 9% / Shoulder 7% / head 6% / other 8%

12 MECHANISM Casual fall 57% / Overuse 13% / Caused by other 8% Contusions, wounds caused by objects 7% (other: fall from heights, collision bay vehicle, burns )

13 PREVENTION MEASURES Some are common to all employees, other are specific for each workplace. Once a week a report is issued an discussed with the chief of every departement (Ski-Patrols, lifts operators, ski instructors, snowgroomers, restaurants...) Every chief of departement has the responsibility to propose prevention mesures.

14 PREVENTION MEASURES Example of specific measures Ski patrols are exposed to specific risks: Use of helmet, special gloves (more resistant), ski, boots, bindings are provided by the company Ski instructors are more prone to ski/snowboard specific injuries: educational talks Lifts operators are often helping beginners: They must learn the ergonomics of lifting weights.

15 SUN EXPOSURE No data about sunburns in employees but in our: -latitude 42º (same as the French Riviera) and -altitude > 2000m above sea level sun exposure is high, the ski area workers are at high risk for: -the development of skin cancer due to UV radiation -solar conjunctivitis, photokeratitis Intervention consists in: - information - disponibility of free sunscreen product for all employees. - disponibility of protective sunglasses

16 CONCLUSION Workplace accidents: - can have serious consequences on the worker s health -can lead to lose of working days -can engage the responsibility of both, the worker and the company

17 CONCLUSION As for snow sports injuries, epidemiological studies - improve the knowledge about the issue, - can lead to prevention actions - must validate de utility of prevention measures Respect of safety rules, studies to identify RISKS and actions to prevent accidents in workplace are paramount.

18 Thank you! Dr Bernat Escoda Centre Mèdic Pas de la Casa Grau Roig ANDORRA /

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