A Company Field Marketing Driver had developed neck, shoulder and arm pain over an 18 month period that was causing her to take time off work.
Her role involved driving for approximately 25 hours week and also included monitoring stock levels, training in-store staff and re-arranging in-store fixture and fittings. Although she had been working in this role for 6 years a new van had been issued just previously to developing her symptoms.
Despite receiving treatment and using different cushions on her seat she was unable to improve her comfort and when the symptoms persisted she needed to take time off. However, when she returned to work the problems reoccurred.
An Driver Ergonomic Assessment was undertaken and identified problems with the initial adjustments and set-up of the drivers seat. A task analysis also showed that a medium van was not necessary for the work requirements. The role had changed significantly over the years requiring less transporting of equipment and therefore a van was not now the most appropriate vehicle for the job.
The driver seat was adjusted, guidance and training on driver posture provided and a recommendation that review of vehicle selection be made according to the job requirement . By substituting a car instead of a van the company would improve the driver’s comfort, reduce its environment impact as well as make considerable savings on both capital outlay and the on-going costs of keeping the van on the road.