Council weighs in with smaller recycling boxes to minimise MSDs
Monday 14th January 2019
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The south Cumbrian council says it is phasing out 55-litre boxes, which are used for paper, card and glass, and will supply 44-litre containers when households request replacements for damaged or broken boxes.
The local authority has said the switch to lighter bins is designed to limit the risk of back injuries to its kerbside teams who operate an alternate weekly collection.
South Lakeland DC expanded collections in 2018, revising its rounds, introducing new vehicles, and supplying new bags to 53,000 properties. Households that recycled glass, cans and paper could then add plastic and cardboard to the kerbside service.
Managers looked at a Health and Safety Executive (HSE) study from 2006, which considered manual handling in domestic recycling schemes where households are provided with boxes to put out recyclable materials, before making the switch.
The HSE research found that operating kerbside box collection schemes, which require the bin collectors to lift and carry a box and sometimes sort its contents at the vehicle, has "potentially increased the risk of manual handling injuries".
The report recommends that, where boxes are used, councils should reduce the capacity to at most 40 litres to provide a method of weigh control.
Councillor Dyan Jones, portfolio holder for the environment, said: "The latest council performance figures for October showed that the council was performing well against its recycling targets and the phased introduction of 44-litre blue recycling boxes will not affect that performance."
The government has identified three priorities, which it says will make the biggest impact on reducing harm, in its finalised strategy.The first is to better manage work-related health risks. The government estimates that deaths from work-related disease may be as many as ten times the number of deaths from acute injuries.
The two measures support the third and final phase of the Workplace Safety and Health (WSH) Council's national workplace safety and health campaign, which will focus on the prevention of machinery-related hand and finger injuries that could result in amputations. The two earlier phases covered falls and vehicle accidents.The 2019 "safe hands" campaign will focus on the metalworking sector, which comprises 5,000 companies and has one of the highest totals of injuries requiring amputation in Singapore's manufacturing industry.
Ryan Griffin, 27, pleaded guilty to breaching two offences under the Health and Safety at Work Act. On 16 January at York Magistrates' Court he was given a community order for 12 months with a 25-day rehabilitation activity requirement and ordered to pay £1,500 prosecution costs. Environmental health officers from the City of York Council described the pool at Dolphins Swim School as dirty, "with a brown and green colour ["¦] and emitting a pungent smell", when they visited the premises in September 2015.
Vicky Ford, the MP for Chelmsford, has proposed a new bill that would amend the UK Building Regulations to prohibit developers from constructing "swathes" of properties with letterboxes at the bottom of their front doors. Speaking in the House of Commons, Ford said: "Back injury is the primary cause of sickness in Royal Mail. Royal Mail has introduced better trolleys and training schemes to improve how staff lift, but despite this, last year it recorded over 16,800 back-related absence spells.
The Tudor Griffiths employee was injured on his first day working at the quarry in Ellesmere in Shropshire when his arm got caught and dragged into the nip point between the conveyor belt and the rotating tail drum. The worker required multiple skin graft operations on his arm and has been left with permanent scarring.