To save injury to yourself or damage to the item follow these good handling techniques for lifting:
Think First & Plan
- Can handling aids be used?
- Where is the load going to be placed?
- Will I need help?
- Remove obstructions along the way.
- For a long lift, consider resting the load midway on a table or bench to change grip.
- Don't lift or handle more than can easily be managed. There is a difference between what can be lifted and what can be lifted safely.
- Adopt a stable position with your feet apart and one leg slightly forward to maintain balance.
- Be prepared to move your feet during the initial lift to maintain your stability.
- Avoid wearing tight clothing or unsuitable footwear to make moving easier.
- Get a good hold.
- At the start of the lift, slightly bending your back, hips and knees is better than stooping or squatting.
- Don't flex your back any further whilst lifting. This can happen if you begin to straighten your legs before starting to raise the load.
- Avoid twisting or leaning sideways, especially whilst your back is bent.
- Keep your shoulders level and facing the same direction as your hips.
- Turn by moving your feet rather than twisting and lifting at the same time.
- Keep the load close to your waist and to your body for as long as possible, with the heaviest side closest to your body.
- If a close approach is not possible, try to slide it towards your body before lifting it.
- Keep your head up and look ahead, not down at the load.
- Move smoothly to avoid jerking muscles and joints.
- Put the load down first and then re-position it if necessary.
Finally, if you are in any doubt whatsoever, ask a technician for advice and / or help.