To avoid back injuries use mechanical lifting and handling equipment wherever possible

A back injury once sustained frequently causes permanent weakness. Where it is not possible to avoid heavy handling the following simple rules can prevent years of suffering:

  • If the load is too awkward or too heavy - GET HELP
  • If mechanical aids are available, such as a sack truck or a trolley, USE THEM to move the load, providing of course, that you have been instructed in their safe use
  • Wear suitable footwear
  • Check in advance, there is adequate room to lift the load, a clear path is available to the destination and there is adequate room for putting it down
  • If a close approach to the load is not possible, try to slide it towards you before attempting to lift it
  • Check for sharp edges - wear protective gloves if necessary
  • Try to keep the load close to the waist, with the heaviest side of the load next to, and as close to, the body as long as possible

When lifting use the method shown belowLifting guidance03

You are particularly at risk when lifting a heavy object and/or when moving items from one place to another. Follow these guidelines when you move things:

  • don't work above the maximum height that you can reach;
  • if you need to lift something down or up that is above head height, use a stepladder or working platform - don't climb on other objects;
  • ask somebody to help you if necessary;
  • store large or heavy items on the floor.

 

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