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MANUAL HANDLING & ERGONOMICS


REDUCING THE RISK After identifying workplace hazards, you can do several things to reduce the risk of manual handling injuries. These tips can help reduce injury at home as well as at work. Safety suggestions include:


• Change the task - does this task need to be carried out? If so, does it have to be done this way?


• Change the object – for example, repack a heavy load into smaller parcels.


PROTECTING


YOUR BACK The back is particularly vulnerable to manual handling injuries. Safety suggestions include:


• Warm up cold muscles with gentle stretches before engaging in any manual work.


• Lift and carry heavy loads correctly by keeping the load close to the body and lifting with the thigh muscles.


• Never attempt to lift or carry loads if you think they are too heavy.


• Pushing a load (using www.tomorrowshs.com


your body weight to assist) will be less stressful on your body than pulling a load.


• Use mechanical aids or get help to lift or carry a heavy load whenever possible.


• Organise the work area to reduce the amount of bending, twisting and stretching required.


• Take frequent breaks.


• Cool down after heavy work with gentle, sustained stretches.


• Exercise regularly to strengthen muscles and ligaments.


• Change the workspace – for example, use ergonomic furniture and make sure work benches are at optimum heights to limit bending or stretching.


• Ergonomics - Implement ergonomic design to


REPORTING MANUAL


HANDLING INJURIES Should someone be injured at work whilst manual handling, then it should be entered into the Company accident book. In addition, if a staff member is off work for seven consecutive days (excluding the day of injury) as a result of a MH injury, then a report to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) must be made under


take account of people, their capabilities and limitations. An ergonomic approach encourages you to take account of all the relevant parts of the work system and requires worker participation.


• Use mechanical aids – like sack barrows, wheelbarrows, pallet trucks conveyor belts, cranes or forklifts.


• Change the nature of the work – for example, offer frequent breaks or the chance to do different tasks.


• Offer proper training – all staff should be trained to use equipment and on how to lift safely. Inexperienced workers are more likely to be injured.


the remit of the Reporting of Injuries Diseases Dangerous Occurrences Regulations 1995 (RIDDOR). All such incidents should be subject to an investigation with a view to try and stopping the same accident happening again.


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