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Alameda County Law Library Building
125 - 12th Street, 3rd Floor, Oakland, CA 94607 · 510-272-6920

Risk Management Unit, a part of the CAO
Employee Safety

Back Safety

Your back allows you to sit, stand, walk, bend, lift, work, and play. Back injuries can cause pain, inconvenience, lost time, disability, and expense. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), more than one million workers suffer back injuries each year. BLS surveys show that three out of four lower back injuries occurred while the employee was lifting. As of 2010, eight percent of all reported injuries were back injuries. Preventing back injuries is a major workplace safety challenge.

Preventing back injuries is easier than correcting them.

A healthy back is strong and flexible. It is properly aligned and supported by strong back and abdominal muscles. The backís primary function is to protect your spinal cord, support your upper body, and allow flexibility.

Some keys to back injury prevention are:

  • Always Practice Safe Lifting Techniques
  • If itís Too Heavy or Awkward Ė Get Help
  • Improve Your Posture, Get In Shape, Watch Your Weight
  • If working involves sitting for long periods of time, Get Up and Stretch
  • Utilize the Safety Resources below

Employee Resources


  • Target Safety Online Safe Lifting Course
  • Customized training may be arranged through Risk Management. Please contact your Agency/Department Safety Coordinator who will coordinate with Risk Management.