15 May University of Wisconsin-Stout Research Findings
Research was conducted on the Quick Winch™ products by the University of Wisconsin-Stout. The studies clearly demonstrated that this system is safer, quicker and easier for the driver. The study, conducted by Ellen Zimmer, Safety/Ergonomic Specialist, and Dr. Glenn Gehring, Director — Center for Innovation and Development, stated the following after researching operator safety:
“Ease of operation, occupational hazards and ergonomic risk factors were used as criteria to determine operator safety. The Mega-Tork ratchet’s design incorporates safety features. Since the square drive of the ratchet must be moved sideways to remove it from the winch, there is a much smaller chance of it accidentally disengaging from the winch when compared to the standard winch bar. Operators state that the Mega-Tork feels more secure than a standard winch bar. When the Mega-Tork is used as a winch bar, the straight sides improve stability and the solid steel handle virtually eliminates any chance of the “bar” breaking during use. Using the rounded ratchet head as a lever handle reduces soft tissue damage to the hand. The plastic foam handle sleeves provide thermal insulation and cushion the grip.
“Back and shoulder injuries are a major concern while tightening with a standard bar. A broader angle of rotation is used to tighten with the traditional bar because of the limitations imposed by the position of the lever holes. The arc of motion, resistance to tightening, muscle activity, physical stress and body posture interact in a dynamic relationship. As the arc of motion broadens, body posture becomes more awkward, i.e., deviates from the normal body position. Operating the bar in the two extreme positions leads to the highest risk of injury because the body is furthest from the normal position. As resistance increases, a more pronounced lunge by the operator is used. While lunging applies the greatest amount of force to the bar, it also results in the greatest amount of muscle activity, physical stress and force to the shoulders, back and lower extremities. When lunging away from the normal position, the operator is most prone to serious injury.
“With minimal training an operator could be taught to use the Mega-Tork in the optimum range to prevent and reduce serious back or shoulder injuries. Being able to keep the wrench handle approximately horizontal allows the body weight to replace muscle power and should minimize operator risk.”
As one can easily see, the proper use of the Quick Winch™ securement system can reduce the number of injuries that have been attributed to the use of the standard winch bar.