New NIOSH Publication Offers Solutions to Prevent Retail Worker Injuries

NIOSH has designed a new publication to help retail workers and safety experts prevent overexertion injuries when moving materials from the delivery truck to the sales floor. The booklet uses illustrations that show how employees would use mechanical devices to perform manual materials handling tasks, thereby helping reduce overexertion injuries such as strains and sprains to the lower back, shoulders, and upper limbs. The publication, Ergonomic Solutions for Retailers, focuses on the grocery sector, but NIOSH notes that the suggestions can be adapted for use in warehouse and storage facilities. 

“Data has shown us that not only do musculoskeletal injuries result in time away from work across all industry sectors, but they affect workers in the wholesale and retail trade at a higher rate,” said NIOSH Director John Howard, MD.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, laborers and freight, stock, and material movers experience the highest number of musculoskeletal or overexertion injuries, and those injuries accounted for approximately 30 percent of occupational injuries that resulted in time away from work in 2012.
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