Ingunn Holman Geving, Mariann Sandsund, Jarl Reitan, Hilde Faerevik, Ran...

Start2006Ingunn Holman Geving, Maria...

The fisherman’s work environment consists of many potential risks. A study of occupational accidents in the Norwegian fishing industry in the nine-year period from 1998 to 2006 shows that more than 3/4 of the deaths were caused by loss of fishing vessel or man-overboard accidents. Furthermore, the greatest risk of drowning is found in the smallest fleet.

The aim of our project was to develop safer work clothing and through this contribute to a reduction in work accidents and injuries in the fishing fleet. We considered that it is possible to produce protective work clothing that satisfies a specification of requirements covering the fishermen’s needs for protection and comfort during work.

An end user-centred process including twenty-three personal interviews and a questionnaire was used to clarify the fishermen’s needs and wishes before detailed design and product development. We identified an overview of all the fishermen’s needs for protection during work, and produced a prioritised list of functional requirements for the clothing.

The results show that the clothing previously preferred by fishermen does not satisfy all the users’ demands for safety, functionality and comfort. These demands have been taken into consideration when designing improved work clothing for the fishing fleet. A selected number of prototypes were developed on the basis of the established specification of requirements. The prototypes were evaluated according to the users’ requirements through tests in SINTEF’s Work Physiology Laboratory and on board fishing vessels. The results demonstrate that the new protective clothing satisfies the fishermen’s requirements.

Keywords: protective work clothing, user requirements, product development, buoyancy aid, fishermen

Ingunn Holmen Geving, M.Sc, Research Scientist, SINTEF, Trondheim
Jarl Reitan, M.Sc. SINTEF
Mariann Sandsund, Dr Scient, SINTEF
Hilde Faerevik, Cand. Scient. SINTEF
Randi Eidsmo Reinertsen, Professor, SINTEF
SINTEF Health Research, N-7465 Trondheim, Norway

Halvard Aasjord, Dr.Ing. SINTEF Fisheries and Aquaculture, Trondheim SINTEF Fisheries and Aquaculture, N-7465 Trondheim, Norway
The work has been carried out by:
SINTEF Health Research, N-7465 Trondheim, Norway

Corresponding author and contact regarding reprints:
Research Scientist Ingunn Holmen Geving,
SINTEF Health Research, N-7465 Trondheim, Norway
Tel. +47 4000 2590,
fax: +47 9307 0500
The Norwegian Fishery and Aquaculture Industry Research Fund has supported the main part of this study.
This paper was presented at the time of the ErgoMare international symposium held in Lorient, France, on 5-7 October 2006