1. What is Manual Handling?

Manual handling is:

  • Lifting
  • Lowering
  • Carrying
  • Pushing
  • Pulling ….
  • …..a load without any mechanical means of assistance.

A load is defined as “any item or object that is being transported or supported”.

Weight is not mentioned.

Health and Safety Myth

The more manual handling an individual undertakes, the more likely it is that an injury could occur.

A sign on an airport shuttle bus said that for health and safety reasons, the driver could not assist with passengers bags.

There are several good operational reasons why the driver of a shuttle bus should not be expected to assist with passengers' luggage.  His primary responsibilities are for the vehicle and all of his passengers, and his attention should not be distracted from these by expecting him/her to leave their cab to assist with luggage.  Health and safety considerations associated with drivers being asked to assist with lifting luggage of an unknown weight is part of the consideration, but it is misleading to focus on this.  It would be better to use a phrase like "for operational reasons drivers are unable to assist with luggage" which would more accurately cover the full extent of the considerations.