Why is Dealing with Manual Handling Important?

Why is Dealing with Manual Handling Important?

  • Date: Wednesday 20th January 2016

Manual handling is the biggest cause of ‘over 7 day’ injuries in the UK, and contributes to an estimated 9.5million lost working days.  Those injured are 3 times more likely to be injured again. 

Manual handling injuries can have some serious implications for the employer and the person who has been injured.  They can occur almost anywhere in the workplace and heavy manual labour, awkward postures, repetitive movements of arms, legs and back or previous/existing injury can increase the risk.

To prevent manual handling injuries in the workplace, you should avoid such tasks as far as possible.  However, where it is not possible to avoid handling a load, employers must look at the risks of that task and put sensible health and safety measures in place to prevent and avoid injury.

Good Handling Technique for Lifting

There are some simple things to do before and during the lift/carry:

  • Remove obstructions from the route
  • For a long lift, plan to rest the load midway on a table or bench to change grip
  • Keep the load close to the waist.  The load should be kept close to the body for as long as possible while lifting
  • Keep the heaviest side of the load next to the body
  • Adopt a stable position and make sure your feet are apart, with one leg slightly forward to maintain balance.

For more information on techniques and the issues surrounding manual handling, visit our YouTube Channel (www.youtube.com/c/ssguktrainingconsultancy) to watch our Toolbox Talk.

Source: HSE


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