What is Manual Handling?
Manual handling includes any task that requires a person to lift, lower, push, pull, carry or otherwise move, hold or restrain any person, animal or thing.
If the task also involves any of the following:
repetitive or sustained force
high or sudden force
sustained or awkward posture
exposure to vibration
It is called a hazardous manual task
What does manual handling training prevent?
Manual handling training helps prevent musculoskeletal disorders (or MSD).
A musculoskeletal disorder is an injury or disease of the muscular or skeletal system.
This can occur in two ways:
Over time as a result of gradual damage to muscles and the skeletal system from poor manual handling techniques
Sudden damage caused by unexpected forces or heavy loads (this does not include injuries from crushing or entrapment)
Some examples of musculoskeletal disorders are:
Sprains and strains
Back injuries and injuries to the shoulder, elbow, wrist, hands, hip, knee, ankle, and feet
Nerve injuries such as carpal tunnel syndrome
What manual handling training should be provided to workers
The law says a person conducting a business or undertaking must provide “any information, training, instruction or supervision that is necessary to protect all persons from risks to their health and safety” (WHS Act 2011, section 19 f).
The Hazardous Manual Tasks Code of Practice (page 32) further clarifies this as “If a risk of MSDs [Musculoskeletal Disorders] remains after implementing higher level control measures, then the risk must be minimised by providing information, training and instruction.”
What Manual handling training is available
Courtenell can provide training in risk assessment of hazardous manual handling, in correct manual handling techniques and correct ergonomic setup of computer workstations, to assist you to achieve compliance with legal requirements.
Manual Handling Training
BackBasics Manual Handling Course
BackBasics Manual Handling Risk Management Course
Workstation Ergonomics training
Workstation Ergonomic Assessment
What are the workplace health and safety duties in relation to Musculoskeletal Disorders?
The work health and safety law says in Regulation 60 “A person conducting a business or undertaking must manage risks to health and safety relating to a musculoskeletal disorder associated with a hazardous manual task.”
This means an employer must:
1. IDENTIFY any hazardous manual tasks in their workplace
2. ASSESS how injury could occur and the degree of risk that it represents to their Workforce
3. CONTROL the risk to the lowest level possible (if it cannot be eliminated entirely) using a variety of control measures; such as, using mechanical lifting aids, rotating workers between different tasks, adjusting workstations, and providing manual handling training for workers so they can effectively use any control measure implemented
4. MONITOR and REVIEW the workplace and the effectiveness of control measures put in place to protect workers
These steps are covered in the Hazardous Manual Tasks Code of Practice
Courtenell’s BackBasics Manual Handling Risk Management Course is suitable for supervisors and managers as well as workers for manual handling training and risk assessment training.
You are welcome to download and distribute the article in
your workplace if you feel it may be useful