Manual Materials Handling

This checklist is designed to be a tool to quickly identify potential problems with manual materials handling tasks. Additional risk factors may exist that are not accounted for in this checklist.

It is common practice to follow up checklist observations with more precise techniques to confirm problem risk factors. A “No” response indicates potential problem areas that should be investigated further.

Question Yes No
Are the weights of loads to be lifted judged acceptable by workers?
Are lifting tasks analyzed so that materials are moved manually over minimum distances?
Is the distance between the object load and the body minimized?
Are walking surfaces level, wide enough, clean, and dry?
Are objects easy to grasp, stable, and able to be held without slipping?
Are there handholds on the objects?
When required, do gloves fit properly?
Is the proper footwear worn?
Will there be enough room to maneuver while lifting the load?
Are mechanical aids used in lifting the load, whenever possible?
Are working surfaces adjustable to the best handling heights?
Does material handling avoid movements below knuckle height and above shoulder height?
Does material handling avoid static muscle loading?
Does material handling avoid sudden movements during handling?
Does material handling avoid twisting at the waist?
Does material handling avoid extended reaching?
Is help available for heavy or awkward lifts?
Are high rates of repetition avoided by job rotation, self-pacing, or sufficient pauses?
Are pushing or pulling forces reduced or eliminated?
Does the worker have an unobstructed view of the task?
Are workers trained in correct handling and lifting procedures?


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