Asistel in English
Reduce load weights to reduce back injuries
The most common and costly agricultural injuries are back injuries. Many back injuries are related to lifting and carrying heavy loads. Awkward postures and slips and falls are also common causes of back injuries.
Research has shown that the use of back belts and stretching exercises don’t help prevent back injuries. The best way to avoid back injuries is by carrying loads of no more than 50 pounds. In research studies, when loads of harvested grapes being carried by farmworkers were kept to less than 50 pounds, back injuries occurred four times less often. UC researchers now recommend that smaller containers be used in the field for carrying picked fruit – including smaller picking bags in orchards. Where smaller containers are not available, try not to fill larger containers to their fullest. While this may require more walking to empty containers, research in grape harvest showed that workers who carried lighter loads had more energy to work faster later in the day and so did not lose productivity or income.
When confronted with a load of more than 50 pounds seek help from a co-worker and make sure the lift is coordinated so one of you doesn’t wind up holding the entire load.
Don’t take chances with your back by routinely lifting loads over 50 pounds. When you hurt your back, you risk not only your employment and being able to provide for your family, but also your enjoyment of life with friends and family. Working smarter reduces injury risk and doesn’t have to cost you income.