8 million hospital visits due to slips, trips, and falls
What do you want to do on your next day off from work? Sleep in all day? Go to the beach? You probably don’t want to be staying at home because of a bruised tailbone. Slips, trips, and falls are huge detriments to workplace productivity. Slips and falls are one of the primary causes of lost days from work, and can result in painful injuries or messy lawsuits.
Slips, trips, and falls are the cause of millions of hospital visits per year.
Slips, trips, and falls (STF) are discussed frequently in safety literature and information systems. You may have seen the signs on the subway.
Slip and fall subway sign
Slips, trips, and falls cause a surprising amount of damage: - Approximately 8 million hospital emergency room visits are due to falls. - Slips and falls account for over 1 million visits - Slips, trips, and falls are the cause of 14% of all accidental deaths - 22% of slip and fall incidents resulted in more than 31 days away from work - No organization wants to navigate legal minefields; approximately 85% of compensation claims are attributed to employees slipping on slick floors - Even worse, the total annual cost for compensation and medical costs associated with employee slip/fall accidents is approximately $70 billion annually
It should be no surprise that slips, trips, and falls are primarily caused by contaminants on the floor that cause slipperiness. Water, grease, and other fluids can make walking surfaces extremely hazardous. Other triggers include falling from ladders, obstacles, poor lighting, and misplaced products.
The hazards also vary by industry. For example, healthcare facilities have to deal with patient bed falls or wheelchairs and stretchers in the hallway and lobby. Hazards in retail industries include carrying heavy boxes or moving materials. In restaurants, people can easily be injured when they move around a slippery kitchen or hurry through the dining area.
The aforementioned eight million fall-related emergency room visits absolutely don’t need to happen. That’s why it’s time to get serious about implementing solutions.
Floor Safety TipsIf you mop, implement a two-step mopping process; it’s safer than damp-mopping. Apply a cleaning solution to a section of the floor with a dripping mop. After a few minutes, the cleaning solution is removed with a wrung mop, before the solution dries.
Slip-resistant shoes are an important component of a comprehensive STF prevention program. Staff that works in areas that are continually wet, such as dish washing and surgical instrument decontamination areas, can benefit from slip-resistant shoes.
Here at XpressMats, we recommend…you guessed it…mats, to prevent slips, trips, and falls. Mats can remove dirt and debris from shoes, and absorb liquid. During winter and rainy conditions, feel free to place additional mats in entrances for a thoroughly effective floor safety system. We provide mats especially for wet areas that are certified as slip-resistant by the National Floor Safety Institute. These are especially useful for areas with kitchen or grease, and also are comfortable and supportive.