11. Manual lifting and carrying
11.1. General provisions
11.1.1. Lifting and carrying objects may seem to be simple operations but many
persons on board ship have sustained serious back and other injuries by lifting in an
11.1.2. Every person who is required to handle loads manually should be properly
11.1.3. Before lifting and carrying weights, seafarers should first inspect the load
as regards its weight, size and shape. Attention should be given to sharp edges,
protruding nails or splinters, greasy surfaces or any other features which might lead to an
11.1.4. The size and shape of the load are not a reliable indication of its actual
11.1.5. The area over which the load is to be moved should not be slippery and
should be free from obstructions.
11.1.6. To ensure that the lift will be as straight as possible, a firm and balanced
stance should be taken close to the load, with the feet being kept slightly apart.
11.1.7. Seafarers lifting a load from below knee level should adopt a crouching
position with the knees bent but the back should be kept straight to ensure that the legs
take the strain.
11.1.8. The load should be gripped with the whole of the hand.
11.1.9. The load should be kept close to the body and lifted by straightening the
11.1.10. Where possible or when lifting to a high level, the seafarer should:
(a) use a bench or support to make the lift in two stages;
(b) adjust the grip as necessary for carrying or lifting to a second level.
11.1.11. The load should be carried in such a manner as to ensure that vision is not
11.1.12. To put the load down, the lifting procedure should be reversed, with the
legs doing the work of lowering, with the knees bent, back straight and the load kept
close to the body.
11.1.13. Safety shoes or boots should be worn.