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Friday, June 2, 2017

Handling devices.

Good handling technique for pushing and pulling
Here are some practical points to remember when loads are pushed or pulled.
Handling devices.

Aids such as barrows and trolleys should have handle heights that are between the shoulder and waist. Devices should be well maintained with wheels that run smoothly. The law requires that equipment is maintained. When you buy new trolleys etc, make sure they are good quality with large diameter wheels made of suitable material and with castors, bearings etc which will last with minimum maintenance. Consulting your employees and safety representatives will help, as they know what works and what doesn’t.

Force. As a rough guide the amount of force that needs to be applied to move a load over a flat, level surface using a well-maintained handling aid is at least 2% of the load weight. For example, if the load weight is 400 kg, then the force needed to move the load is 8 kg. The force needed will be larger, perhaps a lot larger, if conditions are not perfect (eg wheels not in the right position or a device that is poorly maintained). The operator should try to push rather than pull when moving a load, provided they can see over it and control steering and stopping.

Slopes. Employees should get help from another worker whenever necessary, if they have to negotiate a slope or ramp, as pushing and pulling forces can be very high. For example, if a load of 400 kg is moved up a slope of 1 in 12 (about 5°), the required force is over 30 kg even in ideal conditions – good wheels and a smooth slope. This is above the guideline weight for men and well above the guideline weight for women.

Uneven surfaces. Moving an object over soft or uneven surfaces requires higher forces. On an uneven surface, the force needed to start the load moving could increase to 10% of the load weight, although this might be offset to some extent by using larger wheels. Soft ground may be even worse.
Stance and pace. To make it easier to push or pull, employees should keep their feet well away from the load and go no faster than walking speed. This will stop them becoming too tired too quickly.
How do I know if there’s a risk of injury? It’s a matter of judgement in each case, but there are certain things to look out for, such as people puffing and sweating, excessive fatigue, bad posture, cramped work areas, awkward or heavy loads or people with a history of back trouble. Operators can often highlight which activities are unpopular, difficult or hard work.
It is difficult to be precise – so many factors vary between jobs, workplaces and people. But the general risk assessment guidelines in the next section should help you identify when you need to do a more detailed risk assessment.

General risk assessment guidelines There is no such thing as a completely ‘safe’ manual handling operation. But working within the following guidelines will cut the risk and reduce the need for a more detailed assessment.

Use Figure 1 to make a quick and easy assessment. Each box contains a guideline weight for lifting and lowering in that zone. (As you can see, the guideline weights are reduced if handling is done with arms extended, or at high or low levels, as that is where injuries are most likely to happen.) Observe the work activity you are assessing and compare it to the diagram. First, decide which box or boxes the lifter’s hands pass through when moving the load. Then, assess the maximum weight being handled. If it is less than the figure given in the box, the operation is within the guidelines. If the lifter’s hands enter more than one box during the operation, use the smallest weight. Use an in-between weight if the hands are close to a boundary between boxes. The guideline weights assume that the load is readily grasped with both hands and that the operation takes place in reasonable working conditions, with the lifter in a stable body position.

employer’s own employees, who are skilled in the operation of certain equipment, such as mechanized earth moving or digging equipment or crane and hoisting equipment, and who are needed temporarily to perform immediate emergency support work that cannot reasonably be performed in a timely fashion by an employer’s own employees, and who will be or may be exposed to the hazards at an emergency response scene, are not required to meet the training required in this paragraph for the employer’s regular employees. However, these personnel shall be given an initial brie ng at the site prior to their participation in any emergency response. e initial brie ng shall include instruction in the wearing of appropriate personal protective equipment, what chemical hazards are involved, and what duties are to be performed. All other appropriate safety and health precautions provided to the employer’s own employees shall be used to assure the safety and health of these personnel.

Specialist employees. Employees who, in the course of their regular job duties, work with and are trained in the hazards of speci c hazardous substances, and who will be called upon to provide technical advice or assistance at a hazardous substance release incident to the individual in charge, shall receive training or demonstrate competency in the area of their specialization annually.
Training. Training shall be based on the duties and function

to be performed by each responder of an emergency response organization. e skill and knowledge levels required for all new responders, those hired a er the e ective date of this standard, shall be conveyed to them through training before they are permitted to take part in actual emergency operations on an incident. Employees who participate, or are expected to participate in emergency response, shall be given training in accordance with the following paragraphs.