Move The Load Safely
Those of us whose jobs require material handling may already know about safe lifting techniques. But safe lifting is only one aspect of material handling; transporting the load safely is the other. How you move, carry or put down the load is just as important as how you pick it up. The following tips can help you move the load safely and protect your back from stress, strain, and potential injury.
Safe lifting means keeping your back aligned and balanced when lifting. Most standard loads under 25 pounds can be lifted and carried safely by following these steps: • Begin by bending from the knees (not the waist), tucking your pelvis and tightening your stomach muscles. • Hug the load close to you, and gradually lift yourself up using the strong muscles in your legs. • When carrying the object, be sure not to twist or bend. • Bend at the knees and slowly slide the load down your body until you can comfortably put the load down.
Not all loads can (or should) be lifted by you or your coworkers. Carts, bins, hand trucks, dollies, and fork lifts are all mechanical aids that can help transport a load without putting undue strain on your back. Pushcarts and bins can be useful for light, awkward loads, while hand trucks and forklifts can help move heavier, stackable material. When using mechanical aids, be sure that the load is secured in place before moving, and be sure to push the device rather than pulling it.