Using tool belts can be helpful for carting a large number of tools around a jobsite. But when fully loaded, tool belts can weigh upward of 50 pounds, according to OSHA. This puts significant strain on the lower back and hips. Wearing tool belts for an extended period of time can cause fatigue, discomfort and pain, the agency warns.
To prevent pain and strain with tool belts, OSHA suggests the following:
- Use a mobile tool box or bucket-style tool bag in place of a tool belt.
- Wear padded belts and suspenders to evenly distribute weight between the shoulders and waist to reduce contact stress.
- Arrange tools in the belt or bag so the weight is evenly distributed.
- Whenever possible, reduce the weight of the belt by removing tools that are not necessary for the task at hand.