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Workplace layout for a physically disabled production assistant


The 140 employees of the company manufacture with modern production systems round precision steel, rectangular and profile pipes as well as special profiles. The spectrum of production ranges from the manufacturing of the pipes to welded pipe construction. The zinc or synthetic coated pipes are used for garden furniture, home trainers, motor vehicles, etc.

Disability and functional limitation of the employee:

- organic brain psychosyndrome following brain surgery
- hypertension
- spinal disease
- artificial hip joints
- disability of the right upper arm
Because of his disability he can only take little strain and his ability to do holding and carrying work is limited.
Additionally, he can only carry out his work activities slowly.His degree of disability is 80 (GdB 80). His disabled identity document has the letter G (the ability to move is considerably impaired).


He has worked for 19 years as an unskilled machine operator or production assistant for his employer.

Workplace and duties (actual status):

His workplace is in the production area of the company. Here he works on the grinding and setting machines. After insertion of the saw-blade he operates the machines (to grind or set). For insertion he must lift the right arm sideways up to shoulder height and hold it for a long time in this position (unphysiological), and he must slightly bend his body forwards so that he can observe the adjusting and setting in of the grindstone. Furthermore, he must pull the grindstone out with a rubber (forming). Here he must press and move with both hands (at chest height) an approx. 5 mm wide and approx. 2 cm long rubber onto the fast moving grindstone in order to manufacture the necessary conture. Because of the numerous machines, he must operate nine automatic machines altogether, he can only relax in the break times as he is otherwise constantly busy with supplying the automatic machines. He can only carry out these activities wile walking and standing, which is made more difficult as he must raise his arms.

Workplace and duties (desired status):

With the acquisition of a fully automatic saw-blade-grinding machine, the constant insertion work disappears and thus the adopting of the sideways twisted posture as well as the lifting and holding of the right arm to shoulder height. In addition, the right arm is considerably relieved.

Assistive devices used:

plants and machines


The disabled-friendly layout was 22 % financed by the Main Welfare Office.



  • physical disability /
  • forced posture /
  • metal working /
  • production assistant /
  • grinder /
  • grinding /
  • grinding machine /
  • machine operation /
  • machine work /
  • machine /
  • machine operator /
  • automaticity /
  • machine /
  • working equipment /
  • handling /
  • work task /
  • SMEs /
  • assistance /
  • employment /
  • participation in working life /
  • participation /
  • full-time job /
  • employer /
  • employee /
  • vocational rehabilitation /
  • arm /
  • hip /
  • spine /
  • joint /
  • EASTIN /
  • handling and transport /
  • body posture and body part movement /
  • mobility and locomotion /
  • environmental influences, safety and loads /
  • metal /
  • office for vocational integration /
  • lesion of hip joint /
  • arm impairment /
  • back illness /
  • arthropathy /
  • production /
  • industry /
  • gripping /
  • holding /
  • body posture /
  • standing /
  • walking /
  • leg hip movement /
  • lifting /
  • carrying /
  • rate of work /
  • reaching area /
  • body load /
  • shoulder arm movement /
  • bending /
  • workplace design /
  • technical advice /
  • assistive product

update status: 02.04.2007

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