Is Moving and Handling Training a Legal Requirement? 

Is Moving and Handling Training a Legal Requirement? 

Under Manual Handling Regulations, if you require your employees to carry out manual handling activities it is essential that everyone receives proper training. Moving and handling applies to moving people and has an additional emphasis on protecting their dignity. You are legally obliged to make sure all your employees are trained. You must also take take steps to remove or reduce the risk of injury.

The Law

The relevant legislation covering moving and handling, equipment and risk assessment includes:

Health and Safety at Work Act 1974

Manual Handling operations Regulations 1992 -amended

Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999

Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare Regulations) 1992

The Provision and Use of Workplace Equipment Regulations 1998

The Lifting Operation and Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998

The law is there to support and protect people in the workplace. And to assist employers, employees and organisations to understand their responsibilities and operate safely

How do the Manual Handling Regulations affect you?

The Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 requires all employers to protect the health and safety of their employees and other people who might be affected by what they do. And according to the Management of health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999, employers have a legal obligation to do so. It requires employers to assess the risks to the health and safety of their employees, in other words, carry out risk assessments.

Alongside these regulations, there is a requirement in the Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992, that employers must specifically, also carry out a risk assessment on manual handling tasks.

Enforcement of legislation

Safe manual handling is a serious issue. The HSE and local authorities can and do enforce health and safety legislation. They are able to ensure compliance with the law with a range of responses to offences. Serious offences can even lead to prosecution.

Why is Moving and Handling Training Important?

In almost all workplaces, manual handling happens every day. Moving and handling however, tends to occur in care homes, hospitals and anywhere that involves that care of others.

What can happen without training?

Individuals who require assistance can be elderly, frail or prone to pain. Bones, ligaments and skin may not be as resilient as the average persons. Moving someone incorrectly may therefore cause untold damage. Even if you are gentle and careful, if the wrong techniques are used you could inflict painful injuries including dislocated joints, fractured bones, ruptured ligaments and broken skin.

Physical and emotional impact

It is essential that you are able to put yourself in the position of the person who is unable to move their own body. They may feel scared, embarrassed, uncomfortable. People need to know they can trust you and feel their dignity is respected.

The following professional organisations/bodies all offer information which recognises the benefits of people handling training;

  • The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy
  • The Royal College of Occupational Therapists
  • The Health & Safety Executive
  • National Back Exchange
  • The Royal College of Nursing
  • Care Quality Commission (England), Care Inspectorate (Scotland), Care and Social Services Inspectorate (Wales)
  • The Institute of Occupational Safety and Health
  • The Royal Society for the Prevention of Injuries

Moving and Handling Training

Regular training helps prevent injuries in the workplace. If not managed this can be costly and difficult to manage – causing time off, inability to carry out roles effectively, emotional distress and in some circumstances legal proceedings.

Our Moving and handling eLearning package incorporates everything you need to know.

Our Moving and Handling course can be found here