On March 11, 2015, the NOM-006-STPS-2014 (Official Standard), which contains new regulations that protect the health and safety of employees who are engaged in activities related to the storage and handling of materials, will go into effect.

The new regulations substantially reduce the maximum weight that can be lifted by an individual, as described in the following chart:

Click here to view the table.

Likewise, employers will have specific obligations regarding the maintenance of lift trucks and similar machineries. Employers must also implement specific programs regarding the health and safety of employees who perform these types of activities.The new regulations provide that when handling materials with a manual lift (or similar equipment) the maximum weight is 440 pounds and 2 individuals must be involved in the process. The previous regulations permitted one individual to perform this activity.

The new regulations may pose a problem for companies with warehouses and/or employ workers who handle materials by lifting, operating lift trucks, etc. For example, companies may need to increase their workforce in order to perform the same activities that they previously performed with fewer employees.

Companies may challenge the new regulations within 30 working days from the effective date by filing an Amparo (which is similar to an appeal in the United States). Companies may also challenge the applicability of the new regulations within 45 working days from the effective date by filing an action for annulment.