Musculoskeletal Disorders (MSD)

Each year in the air transport industry, the HSE receives incident reports of employees injuring themselves through manual handling.  The majority of these injuries result from baggage handling.

Other work activities, such as cargo handling, pushing/pulling work equipment such as aircraft steps/baggage dollies etc are also high-risk in relation to employees sustaining a MSD.

Employees are also at risk of sustaining a MSD when assisting disabled or reduced mobility passengers unless this activity is suitably managed.

What you need to do:

These simple measures should help to reduce the risk of MSD.

  • Avoid manual handling for example by using suitable mechanical handling aids such as belt loaders, motorised aircraft steps etc.
  • Maintain any mechanical handling aids provided.
  • Train all people using the mechanical handling aids to use them safely.
  • Support the above measures with suitable training in safe handling techniques

Case study: Liverpool John Lennon Airport - motorised tugs reduce manual handling of aircraft steps

This case study is provided by Liverpool John Lennon Airport who adapted a motorised electric tug to assist in moving aircraft steps.

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Updated 2024-06-06