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office manual handling
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Office manual handling

Risk assessment - office manual handling

Moving boxes of paper, water bottle refills and other small loads is an everyday task in most offices. Our ready-made risk assessment outlines some sensible precautions to avoid injuries.

Manual handling assessment

Although employers have a duty to carry out risk assessments for manual handling activities, many find it too difficult. According to the HSE’s guidance, there are potentially two parts: a preliminary risk assessment and a detailed risk assessment. The former is a basic evaluation to determine whether there is a risk of injury.

Where this first stage suggests that staff could be injured, you should move on to the second stage which examines all elements of the task, the individual, load and work environment. The HSE provides detailed guidelines for weights and characteristics of manual handling activities which are considered hazardous.

How to use our template

To save you from starting from scratch we’ve produced a template Risk Assessment - Office Manual Handling. The idea is to focus on simple everyday tasks which can be covered in a preliminary risk assessment.

The form outlines various assumptions which have been made in undertaking the assessment, so you should check that these are true for your own circumstances. If, for example, the surfaces of floors are not smooth, or if more than two lifts per hour are likely to be undertaken, then the conclusions of the assessment may need to change. As noted at the end of our template, a detailed assessment is required “if the loads are heavier than those listed or if the rules detailed here, cannot be adhered to.


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