|For more information on Manual Handling click here for the relevant chapter of the TUC guide to health and safety "Hazards at Work|
Manual handling means more than simply lifting or carrying something. The term is used to describe activities including lifting, lowering, pushing, pulling, carrying, moving, holding or restraining an object, animal or person. It also covers activities that require the use of force or effort such as pulling a lever or operating power tools.
Over 30 per cent of all accidents reported to the HSE are connected with manual handling. Every year 300,000 people are forced to endure the agony of back pain resulting from a manual handling incident.
Manual handling injuries mostly affect the back, but can also cause severe problems to the limbs, muscles, tendons and the heart and because these injuries tend to take longer to heal they have a more profound effect on longer term health.
There are strict laws designed to ensure that employers take action to prevent injury as a result of manual handling. Employers should have a written policy as part of their overall safety policy. The main law is the Manual Handling Regulations 1992.
The most recent documents available on this subject are:TUC response to Work Foundation report on the cost of muscle and back pain
Responding to the Work Foundation report on the cost of muscle and back pain, TUC General Secretary Brendan Barber said:
The Health and Safety Executive is reminding companies of their legal duties on manual handling after an employee was injured when a 50kg sack of basmati rice fell on his neck.PDF version available for download
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