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Manual Handling

Manual handling is a major cause of injury at work.  Statistics show that handling currently accounts for over one third of all reported accidents at work.  All manual handling work needs to comply with the requirements set out in the Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992.

Most manual handling operations in classroom/office areas (as opposed to workshops and laboratories) will probably be confined to lifting and moving items such as papers, files, books, office waste, portable equipment such as laptop computers.

  • a 5-ream pack of photocopier paper can weigh over 11 kg
  • a 17inch CRT computer monitor can weigh from 16 to 21 kg
  • a full water-cooler bottle can weigh the best part of 20 kg - and that’s over 3 stone!

A manual handling assessment should be made of the task to be performed, and steps taken to reduce the risk as far as possible.  Good handling techniques are essential when carrying out the task.  Further guidance can be downloaded here on manual handling techniques, and advice on assessing the task and reducing the risk.  If you require a manual handling assessment, please contact your School or Department health and safety adviser.

Further information on training is available from the Safety Office and Staff Development.