The Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998 or LOLER as it is known, is an item of legislation that applies to everyone who uses and has access to any piece of material handling equipment at work. The legislation was written to ensure safety and reduce the risk of accident or injury in the workplace. Employers who use such equipment must be familiar with LOLER before they allow employees use it as they will be held liable for any incidents and their employers liability insurance insists upon the use of these regulations. Their employees should also be familiar with the legislation because it encourages good practice and makes everyone aware of safety issues. Being aware of the legislation reduces the number of accidents and injuries sustained.
Before using any material handling equipment, it must be checked over for any problems or defects. This includes the beginning of a shift or when equipment has been moved from another location. Regular examination of equipment means that any wear or deterioration is noted so that it can be dealt with at the appropriate time. Proper records of inspection need to be maintained and should be done by competent persons and signed off by a supervisor. This not only covers legalities but improves safety and as workplace accidents and injuries cost the country a great deal of money, any sensible precautions must be taken. All material handling equipment must be suitable for the job it is to do, it must be capable of undertaking the work demanded of it and this must never be exceeded. Accidents are avoidable and it pays to pay attention to LOLER.