Ergonomics by the numbers

1-- Number of work-related musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) that must occur before OSHA's ergonomics standard is triggered to protect workers in a job.
By Staff January 1, 2000

1 — Number of work-related musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) that must occur before OSHA’s ergonomics standard is triggered to protect workers in a job.

3 — Number of years that employers have to implement permanent controls to eliminate or materially reduce MSD hazards.

7 — Number of years that OSHA has been trying to develop an ergonomics standard.

25 — Median number of workdays an employee misses because of carpal tunnel syndrome.

30 — Number of real solutions to real ergonomic problems that can be implemented for less than $100, according to a recent OSHA booklet.

42 — Percent of carpal tunnel syndrome cases that result in more than 30 days away from work.

50 — Percent of U.S. employees who are not covered by a company ergonomics program.

62 — Percent of all lost workday tendonitis cases suffered by women.

70 — Percent of all lost workday carpal tunnel syndrome cases suffered by women.

75 — Percent of general industry employers that will not be required to implement an ergonomics program.

$150 — Average annual cost to an employer for altering a job so that it will not cause a work-related MSD.

2700 — Number of stakeholders who have participated in OSHA sponsored ergonomics conferences.

$22,500 — Average amount in direct costs to be saved for each MSD prevented.

300,000 — Number of workers who annually will be spared painful and potentially disabling work-related MSDs if the standard goes into effect.

600,000 — Number of injuries involving lost workdays/yr due to MSDs in the U.S.

1.8 million — Number of U.S. workers who annually suffer MSDs.

1.9 million — Number of general industry worksites that will come under OSHA’s ergonomics standard.

27 million — Number of workers who will be protected by the standard.

$9 billion — Savings generated annually by complying with the OSHA ergonomic program standard. Source: OSHA

Note: On Nov. 23, 1999, OSHA issued its controversial ergonomics proposal. More information on the proposal can be found at www.osha.gov.