Lifting and carrying objects is common for many workers. But training is
important. If performed improperly, lifting and carrying items can lead to
injuries. Common materials-handling injuries include strains and sprains
(specifically to the back), cuts, fractures, and bruises.
Experts state that no "sure-fire rules exist for safe lifting because manual
materials handling is a very complex combination of moving body segments,
changing joint angles, tightening muscles and loading the spinal column.
However, it is recommended to follow a number of do's and don'ts pertaining to
> Eliminate manual lifting whenever possible to help reduce injuries.
> Stay in good physical shape if lifting items is part of your job.
> Keep materials within easy reach and have handling aids around in case you need
> Make sure you have a good grip on any item you attempt to lift. Test the weight
and balance of items before moving them. Too heavy? Get a mechanical lifting
aid or ask a co-worker for assistance.
> Keep the item you are lifting close to your body. Ensure your feet are close to
the load, stand in a stable position with your feet pointed in the direction
you're moving, and lift mostly by straightening your legs.
> Twist your back or bend in a sideways direction.
> Attempt to lift or lower an object if you're in an awkward position.
> Feel compelled to lift an item that is too heavy - get help instead.
> Lift or lower an object if your arms are extended.
> Continue to lift an item if you realize it's too heavy.
> Lift above your shoulders or below your knees.
An article in the 'safety and health magazine' gives more links to
> Keep ergonomics in mind at work
> Lifting techniques
> Lifting without overexertion
> Exercise caution when lifting heavy loads
> Lift correctly.
AplusA-online.de - Source: safety and health magazine