North Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Service Case Study
Manual Handling Train the Trainer
Download our Bespoke Fire Services 2 Day Manual Handling Instructor (Train the Trainer) Course Outline & Learning Outcomes by clicking the PDF to the right
North Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Service's Health & Safety Manager was looking for customised Manual Handling Instructor (Train the Trainer) training at their Easingwold Fire Training Centre and contracted Osteopathic Solutions to provide three intensive Courses which were all delivered by our Leeds based Manual Handling Expert and Occupational Osteopath Alan Reed (shown below) in July and August 2016, so that North Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Service maintain their compliance under the Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992 and UK Health & Safety Legislation. The Bespoke Manual Handling Instructor (Train the Trainer) Programme was tailored to the Fire Service's specific needs as attendees already had a background in movement, fitness and task based drill training.
The mornings began with a very brief overview of the relevant laws relating to manual handling operations followed by a condensed and simple presentation (jargon free!) on basic anatomy (including spinal muscles, ligaments and discs) and biomechanical function of the spine (please view our Blog '' Human Biomechanics - Kept Simple '' on our Blog Page. Using non medical terms, our Manual Handling Expert Alan Reed explained the biomechanics of manual handling related injury linking to musculoskeletal disorders participants had suffered in the past, and with patient examples from his clinical practice. Once the attendees had an understanding of how manual handling related injuries occurred, the 5 key principles of safer manual handling technique were introduced to reduce the risk of musculoskeletal disorders, allowing real world application of technique to a diverse range of manual handling tasks. The attendees were then shown real-life video footage of manual handling tasks in industry (common examples of
hazardous lifting, carrying, lowering, pushing and pulling practices) and were asked where the musculoskeletal strain was in each example and the likely resulting manual handling related musculoskeletal disorders attend, ensuring attendees understood the consequences of hazardous practices and why best practice technique would lower risk.
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Armed with the knowledge of how manual handling related injuries commonly occur and the principles of best practice, safer manual handling technique, supported by our Manual Handling Expert Alan Reed, the attendees then spent the majority of the Instructor (Train the Trainer) Course applying the principles to commonly handled loads and gave each other constructive feedback on whether eachother's manual handling technique was best practice or could be done in a less hazardous way, by improving grip, body position and dynamic body use.
Alan and the attendees initially handled job specific loads with a semi-squat lift; such as lifting a jerry can out of the fire appliance, equipment boxes and equipment such as the ‘jaws of life’ and a battering ram (the ‘big red key’!). The attendees critiqued each other’s manual handling technique so everyone had an understanding of what components made technique best practice; such as the difference between lifting with a level head (and therefore an unsafe backward bend in the neck) at the point of lifting and a safer neutral neck position. Our unique and memorable training delivery supporting end of course attendee competency in delivering North Yorkshire Fire & Rescue's in house, operational workforce, manual handling training programme.
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2 Day Manual Handling Instructor Assessor Course
The Bespoke Programme continued with Alan Reed and the attendees looking at applying principles of safer manual handling technique to remove equipment boxes from the fire appliance at chest height and then practising full-squat lifting and lowering technique and practice with common loads that were placed onto the ground, such as the equipment boxes and tyres (photo 3 in the gallery below left - please note in the full-squat lift the attendee's feet are too wide apart with the feet too externally rotated. This was corrected by our Manual Handling Expert Alan, with an explanation to the attendee using basic, manual handling biomechanics).
Alan and the attendees finished the lifting and lowering training by practising lunge lifting and lowering practice with the battering ram (photo 1 in the gallery above right) and applying safer technique and practice to team handling situations such as lifting a generator from the fire appliance (photo 2 in the gallery above right), Please view our Lunge Lifting Explainer Video on our Manual Handling Techniques Explained Page.
For pushing and pulling techniques Alan and the attendees practised with common tasks such as moving generators on pallets using a pallet truck (photo 1 in the gallery to the right), trolleys and portable fans (photo 2 in the gallery to the right), Following this, Alan and the attendees looked at application of the principles of safer techniques and practices to more awkward team handling tasks such as sliding a ladder onto a fire appliance (photo 3 in the gallery to the right),
Attendees had the opportunity to practice techniques with whatever objects they moved regularly; even diverse activities such as manual handling posture and positioning using the ‘jaws of life’ cutting equipment and moving a casualty on stairs.
All participants were formally assessed on their technique and practice in a Practical Assessment demonstrating to Alan safe semi-squat, full-squat and lunge lifting and lowering; carrying, team handling, and pushing and pulling techniques. Each Manual Handling Instructor Course then finished with a Written Assessment. From the three Courses all attendees successfully passed, qualifying them as competent to deliver North Yorkshire Fire & Rescue's in house, operational workforce, manual handling training programme, enhancing employee health and wellbeing, and ensuring compliance under the Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992 and UK Health & Safety Legislation.
" I attended the Manual Handling Instructor (Train the Trainer) Course run by Alan Reed to qualify as an in house Instructor for the Fire and Rescue Service. I found the content to be refreshingly applicable to the real world. My previous experience of manual handling training had generally been lifting an empty box with knees bent and back straight. This does not transfer into the wide variety of situations that manual handling requires. Alan’s training incorporated an assortment of work related manual handling scenarios using equipment we would use during our work activities. In short, the instruction was thorough, relevant and engaging. Highly recommended."
Adam Hall, Crew Manager at North Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Service