How to Reduce the Risk of Manual Handling Injuries
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In NSW 29% of workplace injuries are from manual handling (Safe Work NSW Statistical Bulletin 2013-2014). Manual handling is performed in many workplace activities. For example, stacking shelves, working on a conveyor line and pushing or pulling a trolley.

The Safe Work NSW Code of Practice: Hazardous Manual Tasks provides practical guidance on how to reduce manual handling injuries. It explains what a hazardous manual task is and how they can stress the body and can lead to injuries.  

What is a hazardous manual task?

It is a manual task that involves one or more of the following factors:


Repetitive or sustained force


High or sudden force


Repetitive movement


Sustained and/or awkward posture


Exposure to vibration

How to identify a hazardous manual task in your workplace

On page 6 of the Code of Practice: Hazardous Manual Tasks you can find details on how to identify hazardous manual tasks in your workplace by:


Consulting your workers


Reviewing workplace records


Looking for trends or common problems involving manual tasks


Observing manual tasks

How to assess and eliminate/control the risks

Follow the guidance in the code from page 11 onwards and you will arrive at the point where you have eliminated or reduced the risk of manual handling injuries as far as reasonably practicable.

This publication provides general information about WHS. It is not a legal opinion and does not  represent a comprehensive statement of the law to be applied to a particular problem.

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