port container

Photo: Prasit Rodphan/iStockphoto

Study identifies key safety and health challenges faced by global container port workers

October 5, 2016

Cardiff, Wales – Injuries and risk levels are underreported by global container port operators, and the industry needs more consistency in its approach to safety and health management, according to a report from Cardiff University.

Researchers were granted access to six organization’s port operations and were able to survey nearly 1,900 dockworkers. Survey results led the researchers to identify several areas of concern in the global container port industry. Among them:

  • The safety and health needs of female workers
  • Limitations of, and lack of worker participation in, behavioral management systems
  • The long-term health effects that result from short-term safety risks
  • Health and safety outcomes for employees of subcontractors
  • A focus on productivity over health and safety

“This research provides the most comprehensive evidence available on occupational health and safety in container terminals,” International Transport Workers’ Federation President Paddy Crumlin said in a press release. “The simple fact is that you can’t put a price on dockworkers’ lives.”

The study was commissioned by the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health and ITF.