As most people would agree, maintaining a strong Health & Safety culture is imperative to keep any business running at optimal production. The trickle-down effect from an employee or employee’s missing time due to a health or safety matter can have a massive impact on multiple levels. Most accidents can be avoided with proper training and understanding. The purpose of this post/video is to bring focus to one of the most basic, but also one of the easiest to ignore topics – Proper lifting and lowering techniques.
Improper lifting and lowering techniques are one of the leading causes of workplace, and residential injuries. The human body wasn’t designed to absorb the impact of twisting or jerking motions and when you add extra weight to the equation, it can have disastrous results.
Here is an 8-step guide & video to a proper lifting and lowering technique.
1. Get close to the object – Work within your power zone (Thighs to Knees, Elbows Bent)
2. Position feet shoulder width apart
3. Bend at the knee’s – keep natural curve of your back
4. Test the object for weight and shifting contents
5. Establish a firm grip – Grasp opposite diagonal corners
6. Lift with a smooth steady motion
7. Step or Pivot – do not twist!
8. Use existing equipment to facilitate the lift (if available)
Following these steps will greatly reduce the risk of injury. It is important to keep your elbows bent as objects can feel up to 3 times their actual weight the further you carry it from your body. For example, a 25 LBS box can feel like 75 LBS if you pick it up outside of your power zone. It is also recommended to ask for help if the object you are lifting is heavier then what you deem as comfortable.