Research being conducted by NIOSH was presented which aimed at characterizing and identifying intervention strategies for reducing musculoskeletal injuries during the manual handling of items at the job site. Two main aspects of the NIOSH intramural musculoskeletal injury research program were surveillance and evaluation. Studies have identified the following as industries which have an increased probability of exposure to lifting hazards: agriculture services, petroleum industry, general building contracting, heavy construction contracting, special trade contracting, trucking and warehousing, water transportation, pipelines, wholesale trade and durable goods industry, and health services. The percentage distribution of sprain/strain injuries and employment for elevated injury industries in agriculture were given for the following: crop services, horticultural specialities, farm labor and management services, fruits and tree nuts, and landscape and horticultural services. Research was being directed toward understanding upper extremity cumulative trauma disorders. The construction of new laboratory facilities will permit studies focusing on the application of the biomechanical and physiological sciences.