In the past decade, we’ve witnessed an increasing number of slip, trip, and fall claims against property owners failing to provide reasonably safe environments. This rebound of litigation has been accompanied by large awards from the courts for personal injury, loss of employment income, and other resulting expenses. Regardless of whether you own your own building or pay rent, you must have an effective maintenance program in place for the safety of visitors and build a strong legal defense. If someone slips, trips, and falls, they can sue. And if you lose the case, you must pay the settlement determined by the court.
Ensure you have adequate business liability insurance coverage for slips, trips, and falls, as these types of accidents can occur on the property of any business. Slip, trip, and fall injuries cost a lot of money. The more severe and disruptive the incident, the more likely your organizations will be affected. You could lose a valuable employee, negative news will spread about your brand, and the liability could exceed the limit of your policy. Slips, trips, and falls are caused by various factors, such as greasy floors, lack of hazard identification, and uneven surfaces.
Here’s what you need to do to reduce the incidence of slip, trip, and fall accidents at your business.
Maintain A Clean Business Environment
By keeping the walking surfaces clean and free of clutter, you can reduce the probability of injury. No matter if you run an office or a restaurant, there will always be a mess. Having a clean and orderly workplace eliminates potential incidents associated with slips, trips, and falls and makes employees more productive. Delegate cleaning roles to existing staff or hire in-house cleaners. The choice is up to you. If you don’t mind the stress of adding new members to the team, giving sick pays, and finding replacements for the days when the cleaners are off, by all means, do it.
Use Slip-Resistant Walking Surfaces
If something like water or oil gets between the shoes and the walking surface, the molecules reduce the resistance between the feet and the ground. When a person slips, trips, and falls, they can injure one or several parts of the body, and some of the injuries aren’t immediately visible. Effective accident prevention goes beyond clearing away the clutter. Strongly consider installing slip-resistant surfaces, which protect against hazardous conditions in your business where liquids or other materials may come in contact with the floors. Most types of flooring are slip-resistant when dry, but water, dust, oil, or solvents can drastically reduce their effectiveness.
Slip-resistant walking surfaces are common in industries such as oil and gas, transportation, and food processing, to name a few. Color can be used to increase the non-slip effectiveness of the flooring. For example, on steps, you can use two contrasting colors so they can easily distinguish stair edges. In manufacturing facilities, color highlights safe walkways for office staff and visitors. Clogged pores will cause the tiles to lose resistance, meaning that frequent cleaning is of the essence. As far as the flooring material is concerned, the choice should suit the environment and its purpose.
Implement An Incident Reporting Program
All sip, trip, and fall incidents should be reported, documented, and investigated. If people in your organization see or have knowledge of an unsafe situation, they should have a way to report the hazard to the management. Needless to say, the situation should be corrected as soon as possible to prevent similar incidents from happening in the future. You should preserve any security footage showing the slip, trip, and fall accident or the individuals involved, as this will protect you in case evidence is destroyed. Getting back on topic, it’s vital that everyone in the workplace understands the importance of reporting safety-related incidents.
If you have an ongoing situation on your hands, it’s crucial to document what’s happening. Your business is legally responsible if you or your employees act negligently. Many lawsuits are taken on contingency these days, particularly personal injury lawsuits. People other than the super-rich can’t afford many months of legal services if the services aren’t based on a “no win, no fee” agreement. If you’re curious to find out more, please visit https://www.nowinnofeesolicitorsco.co.uk/. It’s not just about being sued, to be clear. Incidents involve real people, often dedicated customers, employees, or partners, who might sustain a severe injury at your facility.
Put Up Warning Signs
You can avoid many accidents and injuries by putting easily recognizable indicators of potential hazards. The signage should be displayed according to the appropriate standards. Safety signs are required by the law anywhere there’s a slippery surface, and a fall could occur because their placement has a big impact on effectiveness. Slip, trip, and fall signs are most effective at eye level. High-contrast colors are an excellent way to prevent blind spots – they’re more likely to catch attention. Yellow is the color typically used for hazards relating to slipping, tripping, and falling. On top of increasing awareness, the easily recognizable indicators inform people they should take measures to protect themselves.
Have Proper Lighting Inside and Outside of The Workplace
Finally, yet importantly, make sure your workplace has proper lighting both inside and out. Low light situations, broken lights, and darkness in some parts of the facility can increase the risk of slip, trip, and fall accidents. In a dim hallway, for instance, a person is more likely to trip over a lump in the carpet. Install lighting in areas that don’t have too much natural light to work with, such as stairways. Checking the bulbs on a regular basis will provide insight into their functioning and problems you might have to tackle. If the fixtures accumulate dust, this can diminish the light’s output.
All in all, slips, trips, and falls are dangerous, particularly in industrial settings. An accident can result in anything from a skinned kneecap to a long-lasting disability. Since the risk of an accident is lurking around the corner, you should be better prepared.