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Martin Turner
09-10-1993, 10:00 AM
We have been asked to research an industrial safety problem in
which a reasonably fit male worker might be subjected (after an
accident) to a load (cushioned by a large air-bag) on the chest or
on both chest and abdomen while lying (in some random position)
on a hard surface. We discern two problems:

a) What transient (short term - say 1 sec) load can an individual
tolerate without sustaining serious injury?

b) What steady-state load can an individual tolerate for an
extended period of time (say 60 minutes) before cardio-
respiratory decompensation?

We assume that the limiting factor will be respiratory. Either
minute volume will decline or portions of the lung will become
atelectatic causing CO2 retention, increased pH and/or hypoxia.
Cardiac output might decrease which might lead to decreased O2
delivery.

We have been unable to find any good literature on the topic and
would appreciate any assistance. We have looked mainly for motor-
vehicle accident literature.

Thank you in advance.

Martin Turner.

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Martin Turner (TURNER@ODIE.EE.WITS.AC.ZA)
Electrical Engineering Dept, University of the Witwatersrand, PO
Wits, 2050, South Africa. Tel: 27 11 716-5440; Fax: 27 11 403-1929