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383 Incidence and injury patterns among electronic waste workers in informal sector in Ibadan, Nigeria
  1. Chimere Ohajinwa1,
  2. Willie Peijnenburg1,
  3. Oladele Osibanjo2
  1. 1Leiden University, The Netherlands
  2. 2University of Ibadan, Nigeria

Abstract

Background Electronic waste (e-waste) are an electrical and electronic device that are unwanted by the original owner, and are at the end of their useful life. Large quantities of e-waste are being managed in Nigeria using rudimentary techniques by informal e-waste workers(repairers and dismantlers) who work without personal protective equipment(PPE) or safeguard to their health and environment. Therefore this study assessed the incidence and patterns of work-related injuries among e-waste workers in informal sector in Ibadan, Nigeria.

Methods This cross-sectional study adopted a multi-stage sampling method to select 89 respondents. Questionnaire was used to obtain information from the respondents. This study reports injury among e-waste workers one week preceding the study.

Results Mean age of respondents was 33.9 ± 11.3 years, 98.9% of the participants were males, and 78.7% had post-primary education; repairers were 53.9% and dismantlers 46.1%. Thirty-five (39.3%) workers sustained at least an injury within one week of the study. Common types of injuries sustained were cuts (40.4%), bruises/contusions (22.5%) and electric shock (18%). Injuries were mainly caused by sharps (62.9%), electric current (20.2%) and blunt trauma (17%). Majority of injuries (80.9%) occurred on the hands/fingers. About 41% (37) of workers reported using PPE and of these 58.3% used PPE because of safety concerns. Types of PPE used were dedicated work clothes (67.6%) and gloves (5.4%). A higher proportion of dismantlers (48.5%) than the repairers (33.3%) sustained an injury (p < 0.05). There was no significant difference in the incidence of injuries among workers who use PPE (40.5%) compared to those who do not use PPE (38.5%).

Conclusions There was a high incidence of work-related injuries among the workers studied. Inappropriate handling of e-waste predisposes e-waste workers to risk of injuries. Comprehensive interventions need to be instituted to reduce the incidence of work-related injuries among the workers.

  • E-waste workers
  • Occupational health
  • Work-related injury
  • Informal sector
  • Nigeria

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