Manual Lifting Safety

Cogbill Safety Tuesday January 26th, 2021

Injuries resulting from improper lifting are one of the most common injuries in all workplaces. According to OSHA, back injuries account for about one in every five work-related injuries. Back injuries can take you out of work and lead to permanent damage. However, back injuries while performing manual lifting can be fully prevented.

Keep the following in mind when needing to perform a lift of any size:

  • Plan your lifts.

  • Use lift-assist devices (hand dollies, carts, lift tables, forklifts, etc.).

  • Wear supportive shoes.

  • Carry out all movements horizontally (e.g., push and pull rather than lift and lower).

  • Reduce or even eliminate the twisting of the back.

  • Bend at the knees, keeping your back straight and stomach tucked.

  • Reduce the size of the material to keep it light, compact and safe to grasp.

  • Use body weight and not your feet when pushing.

  • Try to have most workplace deliveries placed at hip height.

  • Always keep objects in the comfort zone (between hip and shoulder height).

  • Keep all loads close to and in front of the body.

  • Keep the back aligned while lifting.

  • Maintain the center of balance.

  • Let the legs do the actual lifting.