OHS Code Explanation Guide

Published Date: July 01, 2009
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Part 14 Lifting and Handling Loads

Section 210 Assessing manual handling hazards

Before a worker manually lifts, lowers, pushes, pulls carries, handles or transports a load that could injure the worker, an employer must perform a hazard assessment that considers

(a) the weight of the load,
(b) the size of the load,
(c) the shape of the load,
(d) the number of times the load will be moved, and
(e) the manner in which the load will be moved.

The purpose of performing a hazard assessment is to identify workplace hazards specific to the lifting and handling of loads that can cause or aggravate an injury. The hazard assessment must meet the general requirements for hazard assessments as required by Part 2 of the OHS Code. Readers are referred to the explanation to Part 2 for information about hazard assessment, elimination and control.

A hazard assessment tool appropriate to the criteria listed above is presented in the Safety Bulletin “Lifting and Handling Loads – Part 2 Assessing Ergonomic Hazards”.

Many checklists and assessment tools are available from a variety of sources. The recommended assessment tool is part of one that was introduced in May 2000 by the State of Washington, Department of Labor and Industries, and is now also being used in British Columbia. The use of similar hazard assessment tools that are equally effective is acceptable.

Once the assessment has been completed and hazards identified, they must be eliminated or controlled. Suggestions for eliminating and controlling lifting and handling hazards can be found in the Safety Bulletin “Lifting and Handling Loads – Part 3 Reducing Ergonomic Hazards”.

For more information
Lifting and Handling Loads – Part 1 Reviewing the Issues
Bulletin BCL001
Lifting and Handling Loads – Part 2 Assessing Ergonomic Hazards
Bulletin BCL002
Lifting and Handling Loads – Part 3 Reducing Ergonomic Hazards
Bulletin BCL003