Manual handling

Information and guidance on the legal obligations around manual handling

Manual handling legal obligations

The Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992 is the main piece of legislation dealing with manual handling. It sets out the main duties of employers and employees.

The order of controls contained within the regulation explains that first, you need to avoid manual handling. When this is not possible, you need to assess and reduce the risk.

There is no weight limit for manual handling within the regulations. Instead, an assessment of the tasks should be carried out to ensure the safety and health of employees.

Employees also have a responsibility to:

  • follow safe systems of work
  • make proper use of equipment provided for their safety
  • co-operate with their employer on health and safety matters
  • inform the employer if they identify hazardous manual handling activities
  • take care to ensure their activities do not put themselves or others at risk