Health and safety can seem really boring until you have an accident at work or you’re sued by an employee who’s had an accident at work! Therefore for both directors and team members, having all aspects of health and safety, including manual handling, at the forefront of your organisation is a really important thing to do. One of Diamond’s key values is to be a great company to work with, trust and belong to. What would we be if we didn’t put the health and safety of our team and premises first? Not very Diamond!
Manual handling at Diamond
So health and safety in the logistics industry, what does it mean and how do we keep our team safe? Obviously in a busy fulfilment centre people are constantly lifting stuff, there’s moving vehicles, and various other risks.
How do we keep our team safe? At Diamond we start with the law first. Aside from the fact that it is a legal requirement for businesses to protect workers from the risk of injury, the law is very helpful in setting out how employers must deal with the avoidance of hazards, assess the risk of injury and reduce the risk of injury.
The legal definition of ‘manual handling’ includes lifting, lowering, pushing, pulling, carrying, moving anything by hand or bodily force – misconception is that it is something only applicable to workers in physical roles, when in fact, it can affect the entire workforce. Go straight to the horses mouth and find out more about it from the Health and Safety Executive – Manual Handling at Work.
Then the Diamond processes kick in. We risk assess, train our team and then, we monitor and encourage continual improvement. After that, we check all over again.
As a sufferer from back pain, our CEO, Kate Lester, is extremely conscious of making sure she lifts correctly so it has naturally been at the forefront of Diamond as well. But did you know since 2016 – back pain is the largest single cause of disability in the UK; accounting for 11% of total disability in UK population. Therefore it’s imperative in SMEs particularly where the depth of team is arguably lesser than a large business, to ensure we:
a) look after our team members and inform them how to lift correctly and avoid risk or injury
b) make sure absence due to injury or pain is kept to a minimum to avoid increase cost / loss cost in absence and temporary workers
Protecting our team not only now but in later life (if they have suffered the effects of poor or incorrect manual handling practices) is a key focus. We have pictorial reminders all round our centres too to continually remind our teams to handle packages in the correct way.
If you’d like to download FREE Safe Handling Guide from the Health and Safety Executive, you can do so by clicking here.