Human Factors, Ergonomics and Safety Consulting
Most products and systems require some successful interaction between the user and the product if it is to be used safely and productively for its intended purpose. The study and optimization of this interaction to achieve these goals is our specialty.
Purswell & Purswell is widely recognized as a leader when questions of human factors, ergonomics and safety engineering arise in the design of products and systems. We have completed assignments including the following areas:
• hazard analyses,
• risk assessments,
• information interface designs,
• warnings development and evaluation,
• product instruction manual development,
• development of material safety data sheets,
• development of safety programs,
• analysis of OSHA compliance issues,
• consulting in litigation matters
Our client base includes all 50 states and the U. S. Virgin Islands. Contact us today to discuss how we can assist you with solving problems in any of the areas listed above.
We have provided consultation (including expert testimony) on the listed issues for matters in litigation.
We have consulted with attorneys from all 50 states. References will happily be provided on request.Previous issues include:
- Lock out/ tag out procedures
- Product warnings and safety manuals
- Oil drilling, and production
- Large truck transport operations
- Railroad operations
- All types of construction equipment
- Fall protection
- Evaluation of slip and fall instances
- Agricultural equipment
- Automobile safety equipment and tires
- Appliance manufacturing
- Escape from vehicles after post crash fires or submergence
- Paper production and processing facilities
- Automobile Assembly
- Chemical plant operations
- Materials handling and storage, including all types of lift trucks
- Hunting tree stands
- Wood chippers
- Exercise equipment
A hazard analysis uses one or more system safety techniques to identify hazards associated with the intended use and foreseeable misuse of a product. Accident databases are also consulted to identify possible injury modes. Once a list of hazards is developed changes in the product design or instructions and warnings to accompany the product are developed to address the identified hazards.
A product or process is evaluated both for the likelihood of injury and/or property damage as well as the severity of injury and/or property damage. Risk reduction techniques are then applied to reduce both the likelihood and severity of the risk as feasible.
We also assist clients in determining which if any, regulatory standards may be applicable to content and format of the warnings for their products. Where no specific government regulation for a warning for a particular product exists, beginning with a hazard analysis, we assist clients to identify appropriate content, format, size and placement of the warning messages based upon the empirical literature on warnings effectiveness as well as consensus standards. Consultations on warnings development and review range from briefing the client on the necessary elements of a warning to actually producing “camera-ready” warnings for a product. We have also designed and conducted tests of the warnings with representative users who are asked to use the product.
Consultations on user manuals are provided to improve the readability, organization, and completeness with particular focus on the knowledge, skills, and abilities of the anticipated user. Manuals are also reviewed to ensure that appropriate safety instructions and warnings are included. As with the development of on-product warnings discussed above, we can provide “camera-ready” files for manuals to clients.
Safety Data Sheets are required by OSHA for hazardous chemicals to which workers may be exposed. We have assisted manufacturers and importers of chemicals to develop Safety Data Sheets that comply with both OSHA and ANSI requirements for the ordering and content of these sheets. As of 2012, OSHA and ANSI no longer refer to this information as “Material Safety Data Sheets” (MSDSs) but simply as “Safety Data Sheets”. As of 2010, ANSI merged its standards for Safety Data Sheets and (on-product) Precautionary Labeling into one unified standard.
Consultations with employers on the development of OSHA-mandated safety training as well as site and application specific training to deal with specific hazards are provided. Guidance is also provided on the benchmarking of a particular company’s safety performance against its industry’s safety performance.
Consultations on OSHA compliance issues are provided. We have advised clients on the requirements of General Industry and Construction standards and assisted clients in responding to OSHA citations. Based on our knowledge of OSHA standards, compliance directives, and interpretations as well as the hearing record for the standard contained in the preambles to the standard, we have clarified the requirements of OSHA regulations for clients.We have also advised clients on what they may reasonably expect from an OSHA inspection, including likely areas of particular interest given the client’s industry and injury history. We have also provided guidance regarding the duties of various entities on multi-employer worksites as well as OSHA’s citation practices of ergonomic and heat stress hazards under the “General Duty” clause.
2035 Mulligan Dr., Colorado Springs, Co 80920
Phone: (719) 592-1773 • Fax: (719) 265-6905
Dr Jerry Purswell: email@example.com
Dr. J.P. Purswell: firstname.lastname@example.org