In the context of the manual handling operations regulations of 1992, the term manual handling refers to any the transportation of supporting of loads. This includes:

  • Lifting
  • Putting down
  • Pushing
  • Pulling
  • Carrying
  • Or moving, either by hand or bodily force.

An injury in manual handling can involve any part of the body, not just the back.

The employer has to assess the task involved. This includes the load itself, the environment and the capabilities of the person.

Requirements on employers

Regulation 4 of the manual handling operations regulations of 1992, requires employers to:

  • Avoid the need for employees to undertake any manual handling operations at work which involve the risk of injury
  • Where manual handling cannot be avoided:
    • Make a suitable and sufficient assessment of the manual handling task to be undertaken
    • Take appropriate steps to reduce the risk of injury to employees.