Back injuries account for 80 percent of lost workdays. Back injuries and illnesses can be prevented by helping one another identify hazards and train each other in proper lifting and working techniques.
HOW TO LIFT
- Stand close to the load with both feet firm on the floor or ground, about shoulder width apart. Point toes out.
- Squat down close to the load with back straight, knees bent, stomach muscles tight.
- Place hands on diagonally opposite corners of the load so one hand pulls it toward you and one lifts.
- Grip load firmly with your whole hands, not just the fingers.
- Bring the load as close as possible to your body. Keep weight centered over the feet. Tuck arms and elbows into your side and your chin into your neck.
- Stand up slowly, keeping your back straight and letting your legs do the lifting.
Ensure you have a good grip and can see where you are going.
- Take small steps, keeping the load close to your body and no more than waist high.
- If you must change direction while carrying the load, don’t twist. Change direction by moving feet.
- NEVER LIFT OVER 50lbs BY YOURSELF
HOW TO LOWER LOAD
- Lower the load slowly, bending your knees so your legs do the work.
- Position hands so the fingers don’t get caught under the load.
- Place load on the edge of the surface and slide it back.
MATERIAL HANDLING: PUSHING, PULLING, CARRYING
- Use transport devices, such as hand trucks, pallet jacks, and pipe carts know the correct postures to maintain when using these tools.
- Provide transport devices with appropriate handles. These handles should be in the power zone when pushing and large enough to accommodate the entire hand. There should be no sharp edges or rough spots that could cut or pinch the employee’s hands.
- Avoid pulling when possible. Pushing generally takes less effort than pulling because your body weight is used to assist the exertion. Also, pulling a load often causes carts to run into the shins or ankles.
- Use vertical handles instead of horizontal handles to allow employees of different heights to maintain neutral postures.
- Do not stack materials on a cart higher than eye level so that you do not have to bend to the side to see around the load. Employees should be able to easily see over the top of the load.
- Limit the weight of loads so the necessary pushing force is less than 50 pounds. Thegreater the force that is necessary to push the load, the greater the risk of injury.
- Warm up before lifting with gentle bends or stretches.
- Be careful of loose clothing that could get in the way or caught on something.
- Break large loads into several smaller ones whenever possible.
- Never lift over 50lbs by yourself.
- Push, instead of pull, heavy objects.
GET HELP OR DO NOT LIFT IT
- Carry heavy loads no higher than your waist, light loads no higher than your shoulders.
- Keep work area neat so there is nothing to trip over.