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Friday, June 2, 2017



This leaflet describes what you, as an employer, may need to do to protect your employees from the risk of injury through manual handling tasks in the workplace. It will also be useful to employees and their representat ves. The Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992, as amended in 2002 (‘the Regulations’) apply to a wide range of manual handling activities, including lifting, lowering, pushin g, pulling or carrying. The load may be either animate, such as a person or an animal, or inanimate, such as a box or a trolley.

What’s the problem?

Incorrect manual handling is one of the most common causes of injury at work. It causes work-related musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) which account for over a third of all workplace injuries. (For the latest statistics, visit the HSE web page,

Manual handling injuries can happen anywhere people are at work – on farms and building sites, in factories, offices, warehouses, hospitals, banks, laboratories, and while making deliveries. Heavy manual labour, awkward postures, manual materials handling, and previous or existing injury are all risk factors in developing MSDs. There is more information and advice on MSDs on the HSE website, including advice on managing back pain at work. Taking the action described here will help prevent these injuries and is likely to be cost effective. But you can’t prevent all MSDs, so it is still essential to encourage early reporting of symptoms.

What should I do about it?

Consider : the risks from manual handling to the health and safety of your employees – this guidance will help you to do this. If there are risks, the Regulations apply.

Consult and involve :

the workforce. Your employees and their representatives know first hand what the risks in the workplace are. They can probably offer practical solutions to controlling them.

The Regulations require employers to:

avoid the need for hazardous manual handling, so far as is reasonably practicable; assess the risk of injury from any hazardous manual handling that can’t be avoided; and reduce the risk of injury from hazardous manual handling, so far as is These points are explained in detail under ‘Avoiding manual handling’ and ‘Assessing and reducing the risk of injury’. Employees have duties too. They should: follow systems of work in place for their safety; use equipment provided for their safety properly; cooperate with their employer on health and safety matters; inform their employer if they identify hazardous handling activities; take care to make sure their activities do not put others at risk. Avoiding manual handling Check whether you need to move it at all For example:

Does a large workpiece really need to be moved, or can the activity (eg wrapping or machining) be done safely where the item already is? Can raw materials be delivered directly to their point of use? Consider automation, particularly for new processes Think about mechanisation and using handling aids. For example: a conveyor; a pallet truck; an electric or hand-powered hoist; a lift truck. But beware of new hazards from automation or mechanisation. For example: automated plant still needs cleaning, maintenance etc; lift trucks must be suited to the work and have properly trained operators. Controlling the risks

As part of managing the health and safety of your business, you must control the risks in your workplace. To do this you need to think about what might cause harm to people and decide whether you are doing enough to prevent harm. This process is known as a risk assessment and it is something you are required by law to carry out.

A risk assessment is about identifying and taking sensible and proportionate measures to control the risks in your workplace, not about creating huge amounts of paperwork. You are probably already taking steps to protect your employees, but your risk assessment will help you decide whether you should be doing more.

Think about how accidents and ill health could happen and concentrate on real risks – those that are most likely and which will cause the most harm. The following might help: Think about your workplace activities, processes and the substances used that could injure your employees or harm their health characterization indicates that there are no health hazards or the possibility of an emergency developing, shall receive a minimum of 24 hours of instruction o the site and the minimum of one day actual eld experience under the direct supervision of a trained, experienced supervisor.

Workers with 24 hours of training who are covered by paragraphs of this section, and who become general site workers or who are required to wear respirators, shall have the additional 16 hours and two days of training necessary to total the training speci ed in paragraph

Management and supervisor training. On-site management and supervisors directly responsible for, or who supervise employees engaged in, hazardous waste operations shall receive 40 hours initial training, and three days of supervised eld experience (the training may be reduced to 24 hours and one day if the only area of their responsibility is employees covered by paragraphs (e)(3)(ii) and (e)(3)(iii)) and at least eight additional hours

of specialized training at the time of job assignment on such topics as, but not limited to, the employer’s safety and health program and the associated employee training program, personal protective equipment program, spill containment program, and health hazard monitoring procedure and techniques. Quali cations for trainers. Trainers shall be quali ed to instruct employees about the subject matter that is being presented in training. Such trainers shall have satisfactorily completed a training program for teaching the subjects they are expected

to teach, or they shall have the academic credentials and instructional experience necessary for teaching the subjects. Instructors shall demonstrate competent instructional skills and knowledge of the applicable subject matter. Training certi cation. Employees and supervisors that have received and successfully completed the training and eld experience speci ed in paragraphs (e)(1) through (e)(4) of this section shall be certi ed by their instructor or the head instructor and trained supervisor as having successfully completed the necessary training. A written certi cate shall be given to each person so certi ed. Any person who has not been so certi ed or who does not meet the requirements of paragraph (e)(9) of this section shall be prohibited from engaging in hazardous waste operations.