Occupational Ergonomics and Biomechanics Laboratory

Whole Body Vibration Exposures among professional Drivers

Exposure to whole body vibration has a strong association with various musculoskeletal disorders, especially low back pain. Through lab- and field-based research, we investigate the effect of multi-axial vibration on vehicle operator’s general and musculoskeletal disorders.

See the Whole Body Vibration Exposures among professional Drivers project page.


Commercial Fishing Ergonomics and Safety

Commercial fishing is the most hazardous occupation in the United States. While previous studies have mainly focused on fatal injury prevention, our research focuses on nonfatal injuries, especially musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) particularly in the upper extremities and low back. This research will quantify the impact of crab pot handling on biomechanical risk and postural balance (fall risk) and evaluate the efficacy of a fishermen-led engineering control in reducing physical risk factors and associated injuries. Using these findings, we will provide scientific evidence on the effectiveness of the fishermen-led engineering control (i.e. banger bar) in reducing the physical risk factors and fall risks during handling crab pots during crab harvesting; thus improve commercial fishermen’s occupational health and safety.

See the Commercial fishing ergonomics and safety project page.


Computer-Human Interaction

By evaluating various biomechanical exposures and usability, we explore opportunities to optimize and/or improve the computer-human interaction with hope that we can reduce computer-related musculoskeletal disorders. 

See the Computer-Human Interaction project page.


Forestry and Agriculture Ergonomics

Agriculture and forestry are two of the most dangerous industries in the US with a high prevalence and incident rate of occupational injuries.This disproportionally high injury rate is due to the physically demanding nature of the work performed in harsh environment (e.g., outdoor, heat/cold stress, steep, uneven and wet ground) posing various physical risk factors. Our research is to reduce occupational exposures to improve health and well-being of forestry and agriculture workers.

See the Forestry and Agriculture Ergonomics project page.


Healthcare Ergonomics

Caregivers in health care industries suffer from a high prevalence of occupational injuries and ranked as one of the highest-risk occupations in terms of occupational injuries. Among the injuries, musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) particularly in the low back and shoulder regions have been one of the largest components in worker’s compensation claims and therefore create a substantial economic burden on various stakeholders including caregivers with an estimated annual economic burden of $1.6 billion in the US.

See the Healthcare Ergonomics project page.