Five ways to reduce slip and falls in a building

Ensure there is a SCoF 0.6 or greater on flooring surfaces.

Did you know how a slip actually occurs? When there’s too little friction between your shoes or bare feet and the walking surface, you slip. According to the ADA, when SCoF ratings are lower than 0.6, you have a higher chance of ending up flat on the floor instead of walking on it.

Adjacent walking surfaces having similar coefficients of friction (SCoF).
Flooring surfaces between rooms may be different, and that’s not something a person will think about when walking from one area to the next. The sole of your shoe or foot is applied to the flooring surface to create friction, and if the difference in SCoFs between areas is too high, it can cause an accidental trip. We recommend staying within 0.2 SCoF.

Clean and maintain flooring regularly as per manufacturer’s recommendations.
Flooring needs cleaning, but watch what you use: Cleaners, sealers and waxes all impact slip resistance. Using the wrong maintenance procedures can compromise the slip resistance of your flooring.

Avoid this by adhering to the manufacturer’s recommended cleaning and maintenance guidelines. They know their products best, so not following their instructions can damage the surface integrity of the flooring.

Smooth, seamless transitions between flooring surfaces.
You need to connect adjacent surfaces, but a raised transition strip is not the answer. Much like a stark difference in SCoF, raised transition strips can cause accidental trips.

A seamless transition through heat welding or other means between areas (such as a wet area to a dry area) keeps your floor looking uniform throughout the building, and prevents accidental slips from poor, messy transitions.

Use of LRV and visual cues to clearly identify changes in direction or elevation.
Light Reflectance Values (LRVs) and how much of a difference they make in an environment aren’t always taken into consideration. On a 1-100 scale, 1 being light and 100 being dark, LRVs measure contrast of light.

When designing a room, similar values make distinguishing two adjacent finishes difficult. If there’s a change in elevation, though, this can create a dangerous situation. Try using a 30 LRV difference for an adequate visual cue. While contrasting LRVs is a great way to signal a step up or down, it can have the opposite effect when there isn’t one. Different LRVs can create the illusion of a change in elevation– increasing trip hazards.

By putting a space between this sentence and the last, we’ve created a visual cue for you that we’re starting a new paragraph. Use LRVs as a visual cue to indicate to your patrons when you’re starting a new elevation.

Five ways to reduce slips and falls in a building PDF


Posted: 7/27/2015 8:57:19 PM by Lea Charnley | with 0 comments