Back injuries are some of the most common in workplaces, especially in fabrication, warehouse or manufacturing like a shipyard. As a manager, what you can do to ensure that your team is working safely and protecting their backs on the job. Here are just a few ways you can help your team avoid straining their back.
It sounds like an oversimplification, but if you redesign tasks to minimize the items or weight of items that need to be lifted manually, you’ll prevent injuries. Consider the ways you can redesign tasks to prevent strain or injury by eliminating bending, twisting or other motions that can cause back problems. This has been proven more effective than teaching safe bending or lifting techniques that still cause back strain.
Training is always something that needs to be reinforced. If you’ve redesigned a task, you need to train your team to perform it in a new way. You also need to continually train them for safety procedures in all aspects of your shipyard. Training should always include potential risks and how to prevent them before they become a problem.
Proper Lifting Techniques
Training should always include proper lifting techniques such as:
- The best position for standing and sitting
- Not placing objects on the floor that need to be lifted
- Keeping objects close to the body
- Using tools such as dollies or hand trucks to move heavy objects
- Asking for help
These, in conjunction with your other safety training processes, are a good start for smart lifting procedures.
If an employee is injured in your shipyard due to heavy lifting, you will need to follow the established procedure for reporting injuries on the job. This will be necessary for your workers‘ compensation insurance processes as well as the future success of your business. This is also a good time to review your current safety policies and make additional changes to protect the safety of your workers.