Ergonomic Evaluation Of The Work Stations In A Garment Manufacturing Industry- An Exploratory Study
Abstract: India has carved a name for itself as a hub for export oriented garment manufacturing centre globally. Recent
reports reveal that garment industry is the largest manufacturing sector in India. The textiles and garments sector alone
employed 20% of the workforce in the manufacturing sector. Reports also state that textile industry currently contributes
about 14 per cent to industrial production, 4 per cent to GDP, and 17 per cent to the country's export earnings. During the
year 2012-13, garments accounted for almost 39% of the total textiles exports. The total textile exports during 2012-13 was
valued at Rs 137619.44 crore as against Rs 129829.30 crore during the corresponding period of financial year 2011-12,
registering an increase of 6.00 percent in rupee terms. There are 780 garment-manufacturing units in Bangalore. Women
constitute 80% of the workforce in the industry. Literature reveals that these workers work in sweatshops that demand
impossible targets of 100-120 garments an hour, with minimal breaks allowed.
Through literature review, based on the works majorly carried out in other Asian countries it was understood that poorly-
designed workstations contribute to cumulative trauma disorders (CTDs), such as musculoskeletal disorders of the neck,
shoulders and upper limbs, collectively known as repetitive strain injuries (RSIs). The authors present an ergonomic
assessment of the workstations in cutting and sewing sections of a garment manufacturing industry in Bangalore and aim at
identification of the “bad ergonomics” leading to workers health problems and suggest interventions for developing
ergonomic workstations and equipment in accordance with the OSHA standards.