Types of hazards
Manual handling and lifting
Manual handling is defined by the Manual Handling Regulations "as any activity requiring the use of force exerted by a person to lift, push, pull, carry or otherwise move or restrain any object."
Manual handling is much more than lifting or lowering an object.
And activities involving sustained
(awkward) posture and repetitive actions.
Inappropriate manual handling and lifting
Manual handling injuries can occur to tendons in the wrists, arms and shoulders that may cause prolonged agonising pain. This is the basis of RSI (Repetitive Strain Injury).
The back is particularly vulnerable
when subjected to the continuous pressure of lifting heavy objects
and/or continual bad posture. Back injury is the single biggest
Occupational Health and Safety problem in Australian workplaces. Back
injuries account for approximately 25% of all WorkCover claims.
Manual Handling Injury Prevention
Step 1: Consider the task
Step 2: Consider the objects to be moved
Step 3: Consider the procedure
Step 4: Consider the lifter
As well as back problems, inappropriate manual handling can lead to:
Procedures for lifting an object
Step 1: Examine the object
Step 2: Plan the lift
Step 3: Determine if lifting equipment or help is required
Step 4: Wear the correct personal protective equipment (e.g. safety shoes, bump hat, gloves)
Controlling Manual Handling Risk
Traditional approaches to controlling manual handling risks tended to focus on setting weight limits for lifting, and training in correct lifting techniques. These measures alone were inadequate in reducing the number and severity of injuries. There are many factors, other than the weights of objects, which contribute to the risk of manual handling injury. The layout of the workplace, the skill and experience of staff, posture, the duration and frequency of the activity, and work organisation may also increase the likelihood of manual handling injury.
Manual handling tasks likely to
pose a risk to health and safety must be examined, and assessed. Where
tasks are assessed as a risk, the risk must be controlled. In order to
avoid injuries control of manual handling risks should be planned, and
managed systematically and reviewed regularly.
plan for managing manual handling risk
handling issues in account
|Review and evaluation
of the overall plan for managing manual handling risk