Study of summer heat exposure at the ground services operations of a main international airport in Saudi Arabia.
Authors: Noweir MH,Bafail AO,
Address: Industrial Engineering Department, Faculty of Engineering King Abdul-Aziz University, Jeddah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. firstname.lastname@example.org
Journal: Environ Monit Assess.
Publication: 2008 Oct;145(1-3):103-11. Epub 2007 Dec 7.
summer heat in coastal subtropical Jeddah, augmented by heat from operating ground servicing equipment in King Abdul-Aziz international airport (KAAIA), presents a major occupational problem to ground service operators, particularly the air traffic control coordinator (ATCC), that hinders their work efficiency and induces health disorders to them. The present Study was conducted to assess the magnitude of this problem and propose heat control strategy and remedial actions for the Saudi Arabian Airlines (SAUDIA). Heat parameters including air temperature (T (a)), wet bulb temperature (T (w)), globe temperature (T (g)) and air velocity were measured around serviced planes and in other locations used by ATCC, and the WBGT and the ATCC-WBGT-TWAs were computed. Mostly all the T (a) measurements, and many T (w) measurements, were higher than T (a) and T (w) forecasted by the Presidency of Meteorology and Environment (PME) due to heat dissipated from operating vehicles and equipment in service. The measured and PME forecasted parameters have good and medium linear correlations (T (a): r (2) = 0.74 and T (w): r (2) = 0.64). The computed WBGT in the service stations around planes are considerably higher than the 25 and 27.5 degrees C recommended TLV(R) for non-acclimatized and acclimatized operators. However, the computed ATCC- WBGT-TWA levels indicate that the shift-work-schedule which was recommended to be implemented by SAUDIA has successfully reduced their heat exposure to acceptable levels, except for a very few operators (6.7% exceeding WBGT-TLV(R) of 25 degrees C and 2.2% exceeding TLV(R) of 27.5 degrees C) for whom the shift-work schedules might be corrected to achieve safe heat exposure.
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