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Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992



The regulations define manual handling as the transporting or supporting of a load by bodily force.

Main Requirements

As far as is reasonably practicable manual handling activities must be avoided wherever possible. If it is not possible to avoid the activity it must be assessed and the risk of injury reduced to the lowest level that is reasonably practicable. The assessment should take into account:

  1. The load to be manually handled i.e. its weight, shape, size and nature.
  2. The task that includes manual handling, i.e. does it involve bending, twisting, reaching, moving, etc?
  3. The environment in which the task is being carried out. For instance, is it hot, cold, wet etc. and is the floor even, slippery, wet, etc. and are there stairs or ladders to be negotiated?
  4. The individual performing the task.


Employers must provide information to employees about the weight of the load and, if it is an asymmetrical load, the centre of gravity.


Employees must make full and proper use of any work equipment or system introduced by the employer in order to comply with the regulations.

Movement of plant, equipment and materials

Most construction operations involve the movement of plant, equipment and materials. Specific hazardous operations required by the project involving the lifting and man-handling of plant equipment and materials must be identified and assessed as described above. If appropriate, the need for Method Statements should be identified.