Manual Handling

Manual Handling
Manual Handling Guidance Forms Related Resources

What is Manual Handling?

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Manual handling relates to the moving of items either by lifting, lowering, carrying, pushing or pulling. The weight of the item is an important factor, but many other factors can create a risk of injury, for example the number of times you have to pick up or carry an item, the distance you are carrying it, where you are picking it up from or putting it down (picking it up from the floor, putting it on a shelf above shoulder level) and any twisting, bending stretching or other awkward posture you may adopt while doing a task.

Manual handling injuries are part of a wider group of musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs). The term ‘musculoskeletal disorders’ covers any injury, damage or disorder of the joints or other tissues in the upper/lower limbs or the back.

Manual handling activities are not limited to traditionally physical jobs such as portering, cleaning and maintenance; but actually take place in most University workplaces. 

What do I need to do?

If you are required to perform manual handling as part of your job, you must receive training prior to any handling taking place. A risk assessment should be in place for manual handling activities carried out and anyone performing manual handling should be informed of the contents of the risk assessment.