Positive and Negative Work Practices of Forest Machine Operators: Interviews and Literature Analysis

2022 | journal article. A publication with affiliation to the University of Göttingen.

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​Positive and Negative Work Practices of Forest Machine Operators: Interviews and Literature Analysis​
Hartsch, F.; Dreger, F. A.; Englund, M.; Hoffart, E.; Rinkenauer, G.; Wagner, T. & Jaeger, D.​ (2022) 
Forests13(12) pp. 2153​.​ DOI: https://doi.org/10.3390/f13122153 

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Hartsch, Florian; Dreger, Felix A.; Englund, Martin; Hoffart, Even; Rinkenauer, Gerhard; Wagner, Thilo; Jaeger, Dirk
Variance in productivity of fully mechanized timber harvesting under comparable stand and terrain conditions requires the investigation of the influence of work practices of machine operators. Work practices can vary among operators and may result in a wide range of productivity. Therefore, it is of great interest to identify positive and negative work practices of forest machine operators to improve forest work. For the qualitative analysis of work practices, 15 forest machine operator instructors were interviewed in Norway, Sweden, and Germany in semi-structured interviews. Additionally, a literature review following the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) guidelines was performed. The interviews brought up detailed positive work practices and showed negative examples of machine handling, specifically related to boom operation. The literature review retrieved 2482 articles of which 16 were examined in more detail. The review showed that work practice characteristics were only sparsely covered, however, still overlapped with the work practice recommendations from the operator instructor interviews. Further, the literature search unveiled a scientific knowledge gap related to the quantification of applied work practices. Generally, positive work practices can include using optimal working ranges from 4–6 m, frequent machine repositioning, a matched fit of operator skill and crane speed, and an assortment pile size that matches the maximum grapple loads. Training is recommended to focus on crane control in terms of movement precision and work range adherence whereby the speed-accuracy trade-off should be improved to meet productivity requirements and increase efficiency in forest machine operator work.
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Fakultät für Forstwissenschaften und Waldökologie ; Burckhardt-Institut ; Abteilung Arbeitswissenschaft und Verfahrenstechnologie 
Open-Access-Publikationsfonds 2022



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