Lifting Safely In The Workplace

What is a chain block?

If you find you are lifting heavy weights on a regular basis maybe it’s time to invest in a chain block. A chain block is a chain driven gearing system to make light work of heavy jobs. They come in a range of sizes; from home DIY lightweight to heavy industrial. They’re simply made, view easy to use and versatile to allow mounting – so you can hang one from a joist, more about frame or tripod.

Chain blocks don’t take up a lot of room so they can be used in your own garage, information pills you can obtain them in a variety of capacities and various types of suspension. They’re low maintenance and just require greasing now and then and movement of your chain block can be controlled easily too. But, they can be dangerous if instructions aren’t followed properly.

Safety do and don’ts

  • Store and handle your chain block correctly
  • Inspect before use
  • Use the fitted safety catches
  • Always ensure that the bottom hook will reach its lowest point so the chain doesn’t run out in use.
  • Don’t attempt using this equipment, unless trained to do so
  • Never exceed weight limits
  • Don’t remove the protective covers or guards
  • Don’t misuse or use as a sling
  • Don’t use if defective
  • Never permit the load to swing out of control
  • Never leave suspended loads unattended

A big thing with chain blocks is safety prevention; they are often neglected or left until they fall apart. They are an important part of the production process and should be checked periodically as part of your regular health and safety inspections.

General workplace safety

All employees have the given right of working in a safe environment and systematic safety checks should be carried out over all equipment. General maintenance should have a checklist and a record kept of how often they are checked, any findings and what action was taken. You should ensure;

  • The person checking has a working knowledge of the equipment
  • Previous checks are  on hand
  • Any Lubrication or maintenance requirements are carried out periodically.

Manual lifting

Following health and safety precautions when manually lifting in the workplace can prevent the risk of back ache and injury. Here are a few do’s and don’ts to keep safe;

  • Always discard any obstructions first
  • Keep your hips shoulder width apart with one leg slightly in front of the other
  • Keep the weight as close to your waist as possible
  • Bend the knees, don’t arch the back
  • Know your limits and use a lifting aid when required
  • Keep your head up
  • Don’t twist mid-lift

Research shows that happy workers are productive workers; so ensuring little things like lighting, heating, and stress are maintained in the workplace is of high importance for productivity. But safety is paramount so following procedures when lifting heavy weights manually, with a chain block or other lifting equipment should be followed unremittingly.

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