The Safe Teen Work Project: a study to reduce cutting injuries among young and inexperienced workers

Am J Ind Med. 1997 May;31(5):619-22. doi: 10.1002/(sici)1097-0274(199705)31:5<619::aid-ajim17>;2-1.


A tool used to cut cardboard containers, known as a case cutter, frequently causes lacerations among adolescent grocery store workers. We evaluated a safety program using a less hazardous case cutter combined with worker education. Nine supermarket stores were divided into three groups. In Group A stores, employees received new safety case cutters with education; in Group B stores, employees received education using old cutters; Group C stores were the control. Case cutting lacerations were tracked 3 years before, and 1 year after, the intervention. There were 199 cutting injuries. Cutting injury rates decreased 3.5/100,000 man-hours in Group A stores, compared to 1.5 in Group B stores and 1.6/100,000 man-hours in control stores, with a marked reduction of compensation-related injuries in A stores. Estimated cost savings for A stores were $245/year/store and $29,413/year for the chain. An intervention to decrease case cutting injuries among adolescent grocery store workers can be protective and cost-effective.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Accidents, Occupational / prevention & control*
  • Adolescent
  • Connecticut
  • Cost-Benefit Analysis
  • Equipment Design
  • Equipment Safety*
  • Humans
  • Wounds and Injuries / prevention & control*