Taking care of your body is essential to mitigating wear and tear. Workers suffer many painful injuries because they forget or are not properly trained in the basics
of manual material handling. Here are a few pointers about lifting and safe handling of materials: Use required personal protective equipment:

  •  Think of your toes in case something heavy drops.
  • Think of your hands. Wear good strong gloves when you handle anything rough, sharp or splintery.

Before you lift:

  • Test the load to determine how heavy it is. Use multiple people or mechanical devices if the load is heavy and/or awkward
  • Ensure you have a secure grip and will be able to maintain it throughout the duration of a lift
  • do not have anything in your hands when lifting other than the object you are lifting.
  • Strapping tape is not designed to serve as lifting handles
  • Ensure you have solid footing
  • Inspect the path you will follow while carrying the load, making sure it is free of debris and obstacles
  • inspect the packaging to ensure it is secure and the load will not fall out while being handled

When you lift and carry:

  • Keep the load close to your body to minimize the strain.
  • If the object is over you head, get a ladder or lift to get to it more easily.
  • Do not reach to get an object off the opposite site of a pallet, rotate the pallet or walk around to get closer.
  • Crouch down with the load between your legs and get a good grip on the object.
  • Lift smoothly and slowly with your legs. Keep your back vertical.
  • Keep your body facing the load throughout the lift and while moving the load. Don’t twist your body; pivot with your feet instead of your spine.
  • Carry the load close to your body in the space between your shoulders and waist.
  • Do not block your view with the load.
  • Resist the temptation to carry that one extra box to avoid another trip.

Use equipment (dollies, carts, hoists, or lifts) to move loads whenever possible.  Push rather than pull if using a manual device to move the load.  Always play it smart; choosing the safer method is always the correct decision. Apply these methods to every handling activity you’re involved in.

Remember Safety Starts with You! Thank you for your hard work!