Have you ever had a slip and a fall? It is never such a pleasant moment. At times, you may slip and fall only to wake up with a bump or life threatening bruises. Therefore, the safety of employees through proper workplace floors should be guaranteed. According to a research in the department of labor, accidents due to inferior flooring and floors maintenance constitute 15% of the total deaths per year. The figure comes second after automobiles accidents. Furthermore, the risks also score 20% in the total injury reported in America. A separate study indicates that approximately 8 million people seek medical care yearly with complications related to slip and fall. Thus, a safe working environment is paramount to solving the preventable hiking deaths.
6 precautions to enhance workplace floors safety
Generally, slips and trips are the major flooring problems, but they are avoidable. Slips always occur when your shoes lose grip of the floor surface due to wet floor, greasy and oily surface, and dust. However, trips are always as a result of walking on uneven floor surfaces that compromises one’s balance. Slippery floors are the leading causes of floor hazards at the workplace. Some of the factors that contribute most to the workplace fall accidents include wet floor hazard, uneven floor surface, floors with fresh wax or polish, missing floor tiles, slopped slippery walking surfaces, shoes with wet underneath, damaged steps, loose carpeting, mats among other causes. The following are some of the potential flooring hazards and how to solve them to enhance floor safety.
1. Wet floors
The wet and slick floor is one of the potential factors to fall hazard at the workplace. It increases the risk of fall and chances of other workplace accidents related to slips. The risks associated with wet floor workplace hazards can be solved by quick mopping of any liquid spill. Floor polishing and application of chemicals to enhance friction can also help minimize the danger by improving traction. Alternatively, consider having non-slip floor coating applied on the floor surface to reduce the incidences of slip and fall.
2. Open concrete joints
Concrete joints that are not filled pose a risk of slip and fall. Also, they cause potential tripping hazards due to the uneven surface created by wide cracks. It may also cause fatigue to employees. In an attempt to solve this, the joints and cracks should be professionally filled to maintain an even floor.
3. Damp floors
Damp floors can be as a result of accumulation of water under the equipment, furniture, and some water absorbed by the floor in the case of concrete floors. The dump surfaces encourage fungus growth and multiplication that accumulates to toxic levels that can trigger asthma, irritation, and infection of the respiratory system. This can be solved by conducting a moisture test and adjusting the floor conditions accordingly.
4. Old and worn out Workplace floors
In many cases, old and worn out flooring pose a tripping hazard. The floor may develop several deep parches that make the floor challenging to walk on. Makeover old floors to fix the problem. This can be done by choosing resilient flooring that offers a safe working environment.
5. Old workplace mats and carpets
Carpets and rugs are often good choices for use at the workplace, but the hazard that may be caused by the same when worn out and not replaced is significant. Carpets are high hazards to tripping when old. Mats too may develop patches making them unsafe for work when worn out. The best solution is to buy quality carpets and replace worn out rugs.
6. Choice of flooring color
Every work premise has a preferred color, but great care should be taken to choose colors that enhance floor visibility. Bright workplace floors reduce tripping hazards due to things such as power cables and other materials.
Despite being inherently tricky to protect employs from every kind of accidents due to flooring, effectively addressing problems related to poor floor conditions may fix multiple issues. It is, therefore, an obligation rather than an option when it comes to employees’ safety. A safe working environment is motivating to the workers, and minimizes loses due to spillage and breakage of valuable equipment.