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July 15, 2011

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New guide for safe cargo lifting practices

Two safety associations have come together to publish a new guide on the safe management of lifting gear in cargo-handling applications.

ICHCA International, a membership organisation dedicated to the promotion of safety and efficiency in the handling and movement of goods by all modes of transport, has joined forces with the Lifting Equipment Engineers Association (LEEA) to publish Organisation of Gear Stores.

The guide is aimed at helping employers ensure that lifting equipment, such as slings and shackles, remain fit for use, even in hostile working conditions. The document explains that overhead lifting plays a key role in cargo-handling applications and it’s essential that equipment is used safely and properly maintained.

Described as an easy-to-understand, step-by-step guide to creating a safe store system for ‘loose lifting gear’, the document’s recommendations include: appointing a responsible person to take ownership of loose gear; regularly putting the equipment through an examination by a competent person; clearly mark the equipment; securely store the items; inspect all equipment when it is returned to stores; and dispose, or repair all unserviceable loose gear.

Commenting on the guidance, LEEA chief executive Geoff Holden said: “Over recent years we have become increasingly concerned about the number of lifting-related accidents that occur during cargo handling. Maritime environments tend to accelerate the speed with which lifting gear deteriorates and, all too often, this is combined with an unprofessional approach to the management, maintenance and operation of equipment.

“It is vital that employers recognise the risks inherent in overhead lifting and this guide will provide them with a useful tool for improving standards of safety and efficiency.”

For more information on the guide, e-mail [email protected]

Approaches to managing the risks associated Musculoskeletal disorders

In this episode of the Safety & Health Podcast, we hear from Matt Birtles, Principal Ergonomics Consultant at HSE’s Science and Research Centre, about the different approaches to managing the risks associated with Musculoskeletal disorders.

Matt, an ergonomics and human factors expert, shares his thoughts on why MSDs are important, the various prevalent rates across the UK, what you can do within your own organisation and the Risk Management process surrounding MSD’s.

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