Stuffing and stripping containers exerts a physical toll. Complaints can lead to health injuries and illness. Overexertion is caused by lifting, pushing, pulling, performing repetitive movements and assuming bad posture. The latter often arises because the working environment has been poorly arranged or cannot be arranged properly.
WHAT ARE THE RISKS?
Containers are often stuffed and stripped at distribution centres and recipients’ premises in the wholesale and retail sector. In general, working conditions are far from ideal for employees who have to stoop to lift and stack heavy boxes in containers, or lift loads for extended periods – frequently above head height. To prevent or limit physical overexertion caused by lifting, use can be made of slip sheets (instead of pallets), RollerForks and mini forklifts that can be manoeuvred into containers, or specially designed lifting devices that can be moved inside containers. Other examples include tipping the container to unload sacks.
If there is no suitable technical solution available, then organizational measures should be taken, e.g. task rotation in order to limit the physical burden placed on any one individual. Information and instructions about preventing and limiting physical overexertion are extremely important.
Source Dutch Ministry of General Affairs: http://docs.minszw.nl/pdf//75/2007/75_2007_6_16998.pdf