Experimental Investigation of Workers Physiology under Tropical Climate in Construction Industries
Keywords:Workers physiology, heart rate, volume oxygen uptake
Construction workers are particularly susceptible to heat-related illnesses, for the weather is very hot and humid. The objective of this study is to investigate the interaction between the temperature and relative humidity to the physiological parameters such as heart rate (HR) and volume oxygen uptake (VO2 max) of the workers in the construction industry. The experiment was conducted in an environmental chamber which simulates the environment of the construction industry with three conditions combining air temperature and relative humidity (34 °C/74 %, 34 °C/92 %, 38 °C/83 %). The HR and the VO2 max of three subjects were monitored, and all the data were continuously recorded every 15 minutes. For each condition, the activity levels such as lifting the heavy sand (10 kg) were conducted for subjects. In the VO2 case, a significant correlation was observed between air temperature (p=0.043) and the relative humidity (p=0.000). Meanwhile, in HR case, a significant correlation was also observed between air temperature (p=0.004) and the relative humidity (p=0.028). The high-risk thermal environment (38 °C/83 %) and subject were identified. In conclusion, it can be empirically proved that environmental factor such as temperature and relative humidity have a significant impact on workers’ performance.
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