Avoiding Slips and Falls

Slips and falls are common causes of workplace injuries. According to the National Floor Safety Institute (NFSI), they are the leading cause of worker’s compensation claims. The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) states that over 17 percent of all disabling occupational injuries result from falls.

Falls are preventable. It is important to identify unsafe conditions that could result in an accident. It does not take much to cause a serious fall. There are many conditions that could result in a slip and injury such as:

  • Objects or substances left in the walkway
    • Water
    • Spilled food
    • Soap, cleaning products
    • Grease, oil
    • Sawdust, dirt, debris
    • Extension cords, cables, hoses
    • Clutter, open cabinets and drawers
  • Irregular surfaces
    • Cobblestone
    • Gravel
    • Loose rugs, mats
    • Damaged or irregular steps
  • Freshly-waxed, polished floors
  • Sloped walkways
  • Loose or missing floorboards and tiles
  • Elevated surfaces (ladders, step stools)
  • Over-reaching for items on shelf or while on ladder
  • Poor body mechanics
  • Missing or damaged handrails
  • Missing or damaged anti-skid protection
  • Inadequate lighting
  • Inadequate or missing signage

Prevention and education are key. Educate employees on the importance of keeping the workspace clean and tidy. Instruct on how to report slip and fall hazards. Build prevention protocol into workplace policies.

For more information on how to prevent against the risk of slips and falls in your unique workplace or how to build workplace policies, contact IBA.

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