Low back and neck pain in locomotive engineers exposed to whole-body vibration

David McBride, Sara Paulin, G. Peter Herbison, David Waite, Nasser Bagheri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


The objective of this study was to determine the prevalence and excess risk of low back pain and neck pain in locomotive engineers, and to investigate the relationship of bothwith whole-body vibration exposure. A cross-sectional survey comparing locomotive engineers with other rail worker referents was conducted. Current vibration levels were measured, cumulative exposures calculated for engineers and referents, and low back and neck pain assessed by a self-completed questionnaire. Median vibration exposure in the z- (vertical) axis was 0.62 m/s2. Engineers experienced more frequent low back and neck pain, odds ratios (ORs) of 1.77 (95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.19-2.64) and 1.92 (95% CI: 1.22-3.02), respectively. The authors conclude that vibration close to the "action levels" of published standards contribute to low back and neck pain. Vibration levels need to be assessed conservatively and control measures introduced.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)207-213
Number of pages7
JournalArchives of Environmental and Occupational Health
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes


Dive into the research topics of 'Low back and neck pain in locomotive engineers exposed to whole-body vibration'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this