I wanted to share Sara Pearson Specter’s Article in the June 2017 issue of Modern Materials Handling.

She talks about the role of ergonomics in material handling. She brings up some serious insurance concerns that all businesses should consider.

She also provides some excellent solutions such as the use smart employment of Vertical Reciprocating Conveyors (VRC), Lifting and tilting tables, scissor lifts, and other material handling and freight lifting equipment. Please see the article below:

Materials Handling Ergonomics: Minimize the Strain

Ergonomic features in materials handling equipment and software keep workers safe while giving productivity a lift.

In the past decade, the average manual materials handler has gotten older, heavier and harder to hire and retain. Pair that with the rising costs of workers’ compensation insurance and global pressures to increase productivity, and manufacturers, warehouses and distribution center managers are taking a much closer look at improving ergonomics in their operations. “Today, there are about 25 million people over 55 years old in the workplace. By 2025 that number will rise to 32 million people,” says Jim Galante, director of business development at Southworth International Group and chairman of the Ergonomic Assist Systems & Equipment (EASE) Council. “Plus, about 33% of all people in the United States are obese, weighing more than 30 pounds above their body mass index.” With as many of 65% of worker’s compensation claims associated with manual materials handling, insurance companies are raising their rates—or mandating ergonomic improvements for continued coverage, Galante adds. “I recently spoke with the head of risk management at a major insurer who said that for the first time in company history their payout for these claims exceeded their intake,” Galante says. “He said they could not continue to carry those clients unless they implemented more ergonomic solutions within their workplaces.” Equipment suppliers are responding to the need, engineering and designing features into their products to help workers minimize the strains associated with lifting, reaching, twisting, pulling and pushing. The beauty of such features, Galante continues, is they often address the demand for increased productivity as well. “If you have an ergonomic issue in your process, it can be directly associated to a production inefficiency—and for many, enhanced productivity often helps to justify the investment in more ergonomically designed equipment,” he says. Here, Modern looks at some of the ergonomic benefits to be gained from implementing such equipment to support manual materials handling throughout multiple areas of a facility.

Lift tables optimize access to loads, items

One way to minimize worker fatigue and ease back strain while lifting is to keep the material being handled at a height between 30 inches (the average distance of a person’s knuckles to the floor) and 40 inches (the average distance of a person’s hands to the floor when the elbows are bent), says Galante. “There’s no one way to do that,” he notes. “You can use vacuum lifters, manipulators, balancers lift tables and other systems. Often we’ll see a mix of technologies in use depending on the environment and the products being handled.” When it comes to lift tables, they’re often used to load pallets because they position the pallet off the floor and keep the cartons being loaded or unloaded within the ideal 30 to 40 inches. But, as it turns out, bending over to pick up or place a box or item actually puts less pressure on the back than reaching for it, Galante says. “Reaching out puts more pressure on the lower back than bending over and lifting. With back injuries costing up to $90,000 in workers’ compensation claims, we see more companies implementing a turntable top on the lift table to bring the load around to the worker who stays in one place,” he explains. Additionally, with more operations using automated storage and retrieval systems (AS/RS), it has become easier to fill smaller orders, and many companies are using reusable plastic totes to ship items to retail stores for restocking. Lift tables can be equipped with titling platforms—a 30-degree angle allows better ergonomic access to the bottom of these totes. “Reaching into a tote causes a person to raise their shoulders, which puts a lot of pressure on the upper back and neck; the tilting function enables the contents of the tote to directly align with the operator’s eyes and eliminate that upper body strain,” he adds.

Source: http://www.mhi.org/downloads/industrygroups/ease/articles/mmh-june-2017.pdf

Tips And Trick For Contractor Business

Construction and maintenance businesses are important small business fields that are needed all the time and everywhere. There is a very high demand on building industry. It does not really matter if the building is new or old, as they will need maintenance. No one can live with clogged sink or leaking on his or her bathrooms or kitchens.

Many researches indicate the Construction and maintenance business plays an important role in any economy, as it is irreplaceable and so many other industries are connected to this vital business.Being a contractor is not very hard to start you career in that business field, yet it is not a walk in the park either.

Tips And Tricks For Launching Your Construction And Maintenance Career:

    • Experience Is Necessary: When it comes to maintenance business, you should have previous knowledge and expertise of fixing damaged stuff. If you do not have enough experience, you can join especial classes for any desired profession like plumbing or general maintenance.
    • Study Hard: After possessing the required experience, you should do your homework. In other words, you need to collect and study all data you can gather about market status and trends in your work area.
    • Define Your Resources: You should make a decision about funding your construction and maintenance business. It is either you have enough money for it or you will get bank loans.
    • Work Legally: That is a very important point. It includes important aspects for example:
    • Getting Official Permits And Licenses: This is for your own protection in the first place. Clients like handyman with licenses.
    • Get Insured: Accidents happen, so do not neglect to get insured. Insurance can help you in case of any unwanted damages or accidents.
    • Work Contracts: Do not start any job without signing a detailed contract that covers all the aspects of your assigned job.

  • Do Tax Work: Do not ignore tax work, so you can peacefully enjoy the success of your business. It is highly recommended to get your tax ID number at an early stage of your business.
  • Do Not Be A Lone Wolf: Successful contractors never work alone. Get qualified and skilled coworkers and do serious background check on them.
  • Devise A Proper Marketing Plan: Socialize with your community and let people know you. This can get you clients.Ask everyone you know to recommend you to their families or coworkers. Utilize the internet resources to launch an great online marketing campaign. Start a website or blog and hire a SEO expert to make your web hot. Use social networks to promote your work and services. Upload high quality photos and videos that show your previous work.

Commitment, discipline and hard work will make you a top player in construction and maintenance business. Be serious about it as it is a full time job, be patient and hard working person,and never neglect the importance of following the law.