Lifting, Pushing and Pulling Safety

Lift, Push and Pull Safely

One of the best ways to protect yourself from bodily harm when lifting, pushing or pulling is to use proper equipment, technique or ask for help. Take the time to examine the object and know your personal limits. Always ask for help if the object exceeds your limit.  

worker lifting box Use Proper Lifting Techniques

  • Avoid lifting heavy items above chest height.

  • Use the “big toe” test to test the weight of the object. If you can push the item with your toe, it is safe to move it alone. If not, ask for help.

  • When picking up a heavy item from the ground, stand close to the load with your feet shoulder-width apart.

  • Squat down, bending at your knees, keeping your back as straight as possible.

  • Make sure you have a firm grasp on the object before lifting. Use handles, if available.

  • If you are lifting with a partner, coordinate lifting time.

  • Once the object is lifted off of the ground, carry it as close to your body as possible to prevent the object from losing its center of gravity and falling to the ground.

Solutions for Pulling

  • Keep your feet hip-width apart. 

  • When bending forward to pull, drop your hips and bend your knees. Concentrate on keeping your core muscles tight to decrease pressure on your back.

  • Always face the object you are pulling. Take small, backward steps once you start to move.

Push Before Pulling

  • It is safer to push rather than pull.

  • Keep your back straight and bend your knees.

  • Do not twist at your hips to push, but rather keep your core tight and use your legs and body weight to move the object.

  • Face the load squarely rather than at the top or bottom of the object.

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