Accommodating a Lifting Restriction
A Maintenance employee recently went through knee replacement surgery (not work related). His doctor has given him a permanent 25 lb. lifting restriction, stating that he does not want the employee to lift weights more than that in order to minimize stress to the components of his new knee. Lifting is identified as an essential function of the job. The Maintenance job is classified as a "heavy duty" job, meaning that those individuals frequently must lift weights up to 50 lbs. In our facility, that would mean we would have to send a partner along on the majority of jobs this mechanic does (large motors, gear boxes, etc). How far do we have to go to accommodate this restriction? If the man gains 10 lbs., is the restriction changed to 15 lbs.? If we do find a way to accommodate, do we set a precedent that we would have to accommodate every other "bum knee" that comes along?