The Heads of Workplace Safety Authorities Musculoskeletal Disorders national working group has released a position paper reminding employers they must, so far as is reasonably practicable, consider and implement higher order risk control measures to meet their duties under the various state Health and Safety Acts.
WorkSafe, as a member of the working group has released new information consistent with this position paper that can be accessed here.
In short, 'how to lift’ training – for example instructions to bend your knees or straighten your back to lift safely - are not effective in reducing risks nor injury rates.
This type of training is an administrative control which focuses on the individual worker rather than reviewing the system of work.
The challenge is for employers to go beyond basic ‘how to lift’ training to keep Victorians safe. This means duty holders should design the work to be safe in the first place, adhere to the hierarchy of controls and consult with HSRs and workers, as well as provide suitable and adequate training.