Ergonomic Evaluation of Drudgery Associated with Women Harvesting Yam Tubers in Benue State of Nigeria

J.D Amine,, K Abubakar,, L.T Tuleun,


The drudgery associated with the use of hoe-cutlass technology on small scale farms in Benue state of Nigeriawas ergonomically investigated. A total of 130 women farmers between the ages of 17 and 42years, working under an average ambient temperature of 36 0c, were used in the study. Energy Expenditure Rate (EER) and the Total Cardiac Cost of Work (TCCW) were used to estimate the drudgery while the Ovako Work Analysis System (OWAS) was used to analyze work postures. Results show that, 3.10 hours of the 7.50 hours spent per day were used in peripheral activities of weeding/vein clearing, gathering tubers into barns, and 4.40 hours was used in harvesting. Physiologically, the activities of weeding/vein clearing and harvesting can be rated as moderately heavy, while gathering tuber into barns is rated as light work. The pressure exerted on the lower back, hands, and legs of these farmers indicates high drudgery associated with the use of the hoe-cutlass technology, thus necessitating technological innovation of this design in response to the new Nigeria Science Technology and Innovation (STI) policy.


Ergonomics; Evaluation; Women; Harvesting Yam

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Copyright (c) 2015 J.D Amine,, K Abubakar,, L.T Tuleun,

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