Watch Your Step! Avoid Tripping, Slipping and Falling
Posted on Oct 20, 2016 by Kathy DeGlandon
Watch Your Step! Avoid Slipping, Tripping and Falling Did you know that slipping, tripping and falling in the workplace often occur performing the most simple of tasks, like walking or climbing a ladder? According to the US Department of Labor, one of the most frequently reported injuries are from slipping, trips, or falls. Seventeen percent of those reported result in disabling, occupational inju ...
WATCH YOUR STEP! AVOID SLIPPING, TRIPPING AND FALLING
Did you know that slipping, tripping and falling in the workplace often occur performing the most simple of tasks, like walking or climbing a ladder? According to the US Department of Labor, one of the most frequently reported injuries are from slipping, trips, or falls. Seventeen percent of those reported result in disabling, occupational injuries, and 15% result in accidental death, second only to workplace motor vehicle accidents. Most of these injuries could have been prevented.
Slipping – a slip occurs when there is too little traction or friction between footwear and working surface, causing someone to lose his/her balance.
Tripping – Trips can result in two instances. First, when a person’s foot or lower leg hits an object, his/her upper body continues to move and results in the person losing his/her balance. Second, a person will trip if s/he steps down or up and loses his/her balance.
Falling – A person will fall when s/he loses his balance. There are two types of falls: falling from the same level and falling to a lower level. When someone falls from the same level, s/he falls against an object or the floor from a trip or slip. The second kind of fall is when a person falls from one level to another.
HOW TO AVOID SLIPPING, TRIPPING AND FALLING
The best way to avoid slipping, tripping or falling is to be proactive. Good preventative measures can stop many slips, trips and falls, and in this way, many injuries can be avoided. If an injury does happen, examining the cause and taking steps to eliminate it will ensure that the accident doesn’t happen again. Read on to see how you can put preventative measures in place to avoid slips, trips and falls.
• Keep equipment and spare parts neatly in bins and containers and not on the floor.
• Throw trash in proper receptacles.
• Be responsible for your area, removing any hazards in regular pathways.
• Work floor should be free of debris. Avoid cluttering workspace, uncovered hoses, cables wires or extension cords.
• Watch out for uneven floors and holes.
• Inadequate lighting can cause you to be unsure in your footing. Replace lights as needed.
• Floor and work surface should be free of water, mud, grease, oil etc. as much is possible to reduce injuries.
• Dry products such as powder and dust can create slippery surfaces; take caution when using these products and clean up immediately after task is complete.
• Unanchored floor mats, floorboards, or tiles can cause injury. Replace and repair as needed.
• When needed, skid-resistant and/or slip resistant coatings should be placed on possible hazardous locations.
• Focus on where you are going and what you are doing.
• Avoid running, unless in an extreme emergency.
• Avoid rushing and hurrying. When rushing, you can be less sure-footed than when not hurrying.
• Shoes should be sturdy with flat heels and non-skid soles.
• Clothing should fit so that it does not trip you when you’re working.
• When walking, to increase balance keep your hands to your sides and not in your pockets.
• Walk slowly on slippery surfaces and wipe your feet on mats to increase friction between shoe and work surface.
• Do not take short cuts in undesignated areas and/or pathways. Doing so may cause you to trip over objects in your path or be unsure in your footing.
Stairs, Ladders, Scaffolding
• Do not run up or down stairways, and always use hand railings.
• Avoid carrying large loads up ladders and stairs.
• Never use a broken ladder, and only use the treads marked for climbing.
• Never stand on the top two steps of a ladder.
• Make sure that ladders and scaffolding are on solid footing and properly set up, according to manufacturers guidelines.
• If scaffolding is equipped with planks, inspect them before use for any wear and replace as needed.
• Maintain ladders, stairs, and scaffolding at all times to manufacturer’s guidelines.
• Tall scaffolding should be securely fastened to the wall or building.
• When climbing, use a ladder that is the right height for the job, and avoid leaning or stretching to reach overhead.
Slips and falls are frequent occurrences in the workplace, however, they can be reduced. By following safety procedures, practicing good housekeeping and paying close attention to your surroundings, you can be safe from slips, trips and falls.