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Guide to handling bulky equipment

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HANDLING of large, bulky and awkward loads is the subject of WorkSafe Victoria’s new guidance booklet, ‘A guide to the handling of large awkward or bulky items’.

The 39 page booklet sets out practical ways to eliminate or reduce the risks of manual handling injuries.

WorkSafe’s manufacturing, logistics and agriculture program director, Trevor Martin says risk assessment is essential to reduce the risk of injuries.

“There are about 340 claims each year as a result of this type of manual handling. Apart from the effects on the injured worker, they cost the employer-funded workplace insurance scheme about $6m,” he said.

Although the guide is aimed at loads exceeding 25kg or having a dimension of more than 500mm, Martin says it has applications for less heavy and smaller loads.

“If loads can’t be repackaged or redesigned, the use of mechanical means of moving them will greatly reduce the risk of injury,” Martin said.

The guidance booklet can be used by employers and workers in the warehouse and logistics area, shipping container dispatchers, labour hire services, retail and storage sectors.

Copies of the booklet can be obtained by calling WorkSafe publications on 03 9641 1333 or on the internet at www.worksafe.vic.gov.au.

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