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Human Impact Exposure on-board High Speed boats

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Human Factors and Medicine

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dangerous impact exposure, High speed boats, measure forces, musculoskeletal system, Prevent injuries, socioeconomic effect


Operating high-speed boats (HSB) in rough sea is associated with considerable risks, not only due to possible loss of vessel control, but even due to the high impact on the musculoskeletal system. Impact -induced injuries are sometimes severe and cause permanent disabilities. However, it is not known which levels of impacts are dangerous and which are safe. This study is designed to (1) summarise the current knowledge on musculoskeletal injuries related to HSB operations, and (2) to map the incidence of impact-related disability/pain. The results of this ET may lead to a RTG leading to reasonable thresholds for HSB operators, and improved means and SOP for HSB operator protection.


The first objective of this study is to establish the incidence and prevalence of axial musculoskeletal disorders among HSB operators. Systematic review study, surveys among HSB operators as well as national multiregistry studies may be applied to meet this objective. To achieve the objectives and reach statistically significant results it necessary collect large amounts of data. This can be done only through a joint effort by a number of agencies in a number of countries.


Numerical analysis of gathered exposure data measured on hulls and on humans will hopefully yield and understanding of which characteristics of the impacts are relevant for risk of injury and how they should be weighted. This can lay the basis for creating a new measuring unit for quantifying whole body exposure, related to dangerous forces and proven to correlate to risk of injury. No such unit exist and the need is recognized.

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