Manual Lifting and Materials Handling
Hazard: Back and other injuries may occur from improper lifting, bad material handling practices, and overexertion.
- Provide general ergonomics training and task-specific training.
- Get a co-worker to help if a product or other item is too heavy to lift.
- If possible, use powered equipment instead of manually lifting heavy materials.
- Reduce lifts from shoulder height and from floor height by repositioning the shelf or bin.
- Use your legs and keep your back in a natural position while lifting.
- Test the load to be lifted to estimate its weight, size, and bulk and to determine the proper lifting method.
- Do not twist while carrying a load. Instead, shift your feet and take small steps in the direction you want to turn.
- Make sure there are appropriately marked and sufficiently safe clearances for aisles and at loading docks or passageways where mechanical-handling equipment is used.
- Properly stack loose or unboxed materials which might fall from a pile by blocking, interlocking, or limiting the height of the pile to prevent falling hazards.
- Bags, containers, bundles, etc. should be stored in tiers that are stacked, blocked, interlocked, and limited in height so that they are stable and secure to prevent sliding or collapse.
- Storage areas should be kept free from accumulation of materials that could lead to tripping, fire, explosion, or pest infestations.