How do manual labourers develop Repetitive Strain Injuries?
Manual Labour has always been synonymous with hard work. ‘Manual’ comes from the Latin word for hand, and for hundreds of years before automation and mechanisation the only option other than manual labour was to use working animals; primarily horses, oxen and donkeys. These days a huge range of tasks can be carried out or assisted by machines, but there is still a range of activities that can only be performed by human beings.
These jobs frequently involve repetitive motions and in many cases heavy loads. Take for example a brick layer; constantly picking up heavy bricks and laying them carefully in sequence, while often working out in the cold and rain. With the correct training, equipment and the opportunity to take suitable breaks the job can be conducted safely, but if any of those stipulations are absent there is a high risk of injury through repetitive strain.
Working in the removals / relocation industry can be particularly dangerous when it comes to injury; particularly to the lower back as a result of lifting heavy items of furniture. If suitable training is provided so that loads are moved safely and the correct equipment is provided so that loads can be handled correctly, the risk of injury is minimised.
Jobs such as picking fruit can be too fiddly for machines to perform the role without damaging the produce. For this reason a large number of unskilled or low-skilled workers can be involved in this industry throughout harvest time, and in some cases throughout the year. While picking a couple of bunches of grapes is unlikely to cause you injury, spending your day reaching to cut fruit, then reaching to deposit the harvest into boxes, then moving large numbers of filled boxes onto vehicles all carry the risk of injury if not performed with the correct equipment in an appropriate manner.
In almost all cases manual labour can be conducted safely with minimal risk to the health of employees, but in order to achieve this employers have a duty to look into the processes and movements expected of their employees and to provide suitable equipment and training so that the job can be done safely.
What can I do about it?
If you or someone you care for has developed a repetitive strain injury as a result of manual labouring, you could well be entitled to make a claim for compensation. Contact us today, free of charge and without obligation, and let us see how we can help you get the payout you deserve.
If you’d like to speak to a member of our team about RSI, please call 0800 028 2060. Alternatively you can request a call back at a time convenient for you here.
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Suffering with Repetitive Strain Injury?
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