5 Ways to Prevent Slips and Falls
Slip and fall injuries are more common and costly than most property owners believe. In fact, slip and fall accidents amounted to more than $10 billion in total costs for American businesses in 2010 (i). In another study, commercial property owners cited slip and fall accidents as the primary cause of most legal disputes faced annually (ii). Undeniably, property owners have much to gain by taking a proactive approach to accident prevention.
How to Prevent Slip and Fall Accidents
Anti-slip Floor Mats
There was a time when floor mats were thought to serve only as a protective layer for expensive flooring, like granite, tile, or hardwood. Today, that misconception is long gone. We live in a litigious society, and property owners learned long ago that commercial safety mats can go a long way in keeping entryways clean, dry, and safe.
For best results, property owners are to pair an outdoor mat with a second indoor mat to ensure maximum debris containment. Outside, a weatherproof “scraper mat” with tough ridges and grooves will dislodge big dirt and debris from shoes. Inside, a wider and longer carpet met will serve as a “wiper,” giving guests a large area to wipe dry while entering the building.
Slip and Fall Caution Signs
Some areas are more dangerous than others. For these areas, property owners might find it beneficial to proactively place caution signs by curbs, uneven floor transitions, abrupt drop-offs, and other disruptions in walking surface that might not be noticeable by first time guests.
By law, property owners are required to disclose information on known dangerous. Failure to do so might be construed as negligence, in which property owners could be liable for accidents that occur. Slip and fall caution signs help property owners avoid this common pitfall, helping to notify guests of known dangers and risks.
Guests are likely to slip, trip, or fall over 100% of the hazards they cannot see. Exceptional lighting is vital, especially at dusk. Exterior floodlights, entryway lights, and the overhead lighting throughout the facility are just 3 areas to be mindful.
Safety mats, caution signs, and exceptional lighting mean little if they are not properly maintained. Unlike the property owners and/or business management, maintenance personnel are on the frontlines where accidents are most likely to occur. They see debris accumulation, liquid spills, burned-out lights, and other serious hazards long before anyone else. Moreover, they have the tools and knowledge to fix the problem before it has the chance to cause someone serious harm.
Wet Umbrella Bag Stands
Aside form debris, liquid accumulation is one of the biggest causes of slip and fall accidents. Liquid accumulation is particularly hard to manage on rainy days. Rainstorms have a tendency to cause hazardous puddles and slippery conditions at entryways, even when floor mats, safety signs, lights, and vigilant maintenance personnel are present.
Wet umbrella bag stands give guests a place to store and secure their umbrella, significantly reducing the rainwater and mess they carry past the entryway. Wet umbrella bag stands are available in a variety of different sizes, finishes, and styles to complement most interior décor. When paired with mats and other safety products, umbrella bag stands are the final touch to an effective slip and fall prevention plan.
(i) “Workplace Safety Index 2010.” Liberty Mutual Research Institute for Safety.
(ii) “New Techniques for Slip and Fall Management.” CNA. Download the PDF.