Back injuries are a very common injury in construction. In this Toolbox Talk, we will address proper lifting techniques, and how to reduce the risk of a back injury as well as other general safety tips.

 Ensure that you are wearing proper clothing and PPE
 Steel toe or composite footwear should always be worn when lifting heavy items
 Gloves are always recommended when lifting certain objects
 Stretch before you attempt to lift a heavy object or at beginning of shift
 If possible, store materials at waist height to reduce the strain on your back
 Have materials delivered as close to final destination as possible
 Assess the object you are going to be lifting
 Determine the weight of the object before lifting
 Determine best place to grip the object
 Ensure that your travel path is free of slipping and tripping hazards
 Know your own lifting restrictions and capabilities

Get Help:
 Use carts, dollies, forklifts and hoists to move materials
 When lifting a load more than 50 lbs, get help from an other worker
 Use carrying tools with handles to carry odd-shaped loads

Proper Lifting Techniques:
 Have your feet spread about shoulders-width apart.
 Your feet should be close to the object.
 Get a firm grip on the object.
 Keep your back straight and elbows close to your body.
 Keeping your back straight and head up, straighten your legs to lift object
 At the same time tighten your stomach muscles to provide back support (Don’t hold your breath while doing this!)
 While carrying the object DO NOT twist or bend at the waist, move your feet and legs when turning.
 Keep the load as close to your body as possible
 To set the object down, use the same technique used to lift the object
 Lift as smoothly as possible, try not to “jerk” the lift