Manual handling activities are a huge part of our lifes because we push, pull, carry and lift numerous times throughout the day. These tasks not only apply to our work but also to our personal lifes. If you are performing tasks incorrectly this will eventaully result in musculoskeletal disorders and injuries.
Did you know that manual handling is one of the biggest causes of workplace injuries every year. As a result approximatley one third of injuries reported are because of manual handling tasks.
So how do I reduce Manual Handling Injuries in my workplace?
There are many ways to go about reducing these figures and avoiding a hefty claim from an employee: The Safety, Health and Welfare at Work, (General Applications) Regulations 2007, Chapter 4 of Part 2 outlines the requirements that must be adhered to in relation to manual handling.
Assess the task, the area and the load
The first thing that should always be done is to asses the load. Can you safely lift it by yourself? Do you need help? for instance is there any mechanical aids that you can use?
Firstly take 30 seconds and think about where you are going. Secondly have you moved obstacles out of your way, opened doors, and most importantly always check your route is clear and that your journey is hazard free.
Bend your knees
One of the most common things that people tend to do is bend at the waist. By doing this you are putting all the pressure on your back and increasing the chances of causing yourself an injury.
Only lift what you can
Never carry a load that is too heavy. If you don’t feel comfortable moving it by yourself then ask for help.
Take your time
Rushing and not assessing the load correctly can be a huge factor in causing injuries. Slow down and take your time.
Use mechanical aids
Mechanical aids are supplied to help you. People often use the excuse that It was at the opposite end of the warehouse or the site or just too far away. Don’t fall into that category because they are supplied to make your job easier.
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