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We recently had an interesting question from a client of ours that we thought we would put out the readers of this blog.

In our MMH policy, we have established thresholds for lifting, carrying and pushing/pulling.  The policy asks for managers/supervisors to evaluate their areas and alert the ergo team if they feel any of the safe thresholds are exceeded. For lifting and carrying, the task is relatively easy for the supervisors to evaluate – documenting weight and distance.  However, for push/pull tasks, the threshold is stated in pounds of force.  Our managers have found this harder to measure without push/pull gauges (which we don’t have).  So we would like to provide some type of analogy for them that equates to our threshold limit of 40 lbs. of force.

We found an old OSHA document that equated 20 lbs. of push/pull force to a shopping cart loaded with five 40 lb. bags of dog food. Would you know of anything that would fit our need here for the 40 lb limit?

Does anyone use any other examples that they use for this?