According to the researches, injuries and sprains caused by slips and falls in the workplace are among the injuries that cause employees to stay away from work. Every year, 250.000 employees are unable to work an average of 13 days due to such injuries. Country Industrial Corporate Solutions Director Murat Şengül lists 8 important steps on how to prevent accidents such as slipping and falling in the workplace.
There are many threats to the workplace that can cause injury. Although some of these cause serious injuries, injuries and sprains due to falling are among the main causes of injuries that most affect business continuity. According to the report of the US National Security Council, employees stay away from the workplace for an average of 13 days a year as a result of injuries and sprains. Murat Şengül, Corporate Solutions Director of Ülke Industrial, which offers products and services to efficiently manage occupational health and safety conditions in businesses, shares the steps that can prevent such injuries and ensure safety in the workplace.
The first step is to create a risk assessment plan. A risk assessment should be carried out in order to determine the possible causes of accidents such as falling, slipping, tripping in companies and to see the risks of these accidents. In this regard, Murat Şengül, stating that the workplace should be examined comprehensively, emphasizes that finding the threats that cause accidents is an important first step. According to Şengül, risk assessment should be done at regular intervals, at least once a year, and should be reviewed before new activities.
Stair treads should be covered with non-slip surfaces. Falling, slipping, etc. in the workplace. Most accidents happen on stairs. In order to increase the friction on the stairs surfaces, non-slip floors should be preferred. For example, floors such as non-slip tape, diamond plate, bar grid can be used for outdoor stairs. Such floors will reduce the risk of employees slipping and falling down the stairs and provide a safer walking surface.
A clean, dry and undamaged floor should be provided in the workplace environment. Regular cleaning indoors and leaving the floor dry after cleaning is a very important step in preventing slips and falls. Wet or excessively dusty floors will reduce friction and cause slippage compared to clean, dry floors. For this reason, it should be kept under control outdoors, especially after rainy weather. Dangerous elements such as wet leaves, snow and ice should be cleaned as soon as possible and a healthy ground should be established. At the same time, uneven and damaged floors and pits must be repaired, especially outdoors.
Ground markings can be used. Employees can sometimes act negligently because they are not aware of possible threats. In order to create awareness and attention against the floors that may pose a threat in the workplace, some stimulating visual materials such as floor signs can be used. While floor paints were commonly used for such situations in the past, special coatings, floor tapes and signs are used today. Floor markings have multiple colors and features. While reflective and non-slip floor tapes are used in low-light areas, the common "Caution Slippery surface" is used for wet surfaces. Signs attract attention and prevent slips.
Obstacles on the road must be removed. Electric cables, which are usually on the floor in the office, can often cause snagging. It can also be used for employee bags, boxes, etc. If items are left on the ground, it can create obstacles on the way. Therefore, in order to eliminate all obstacles on the walkway and to minimize the accidents that may occur as a result of snagging, the cables should be fixed as much as possible and left in the corners. All equipment and belongings should be kept away from the walking floor.
Lighting should be sufficient. It will be difficult for employees to avoid accidents in areas where they cannot see the path they are walking or where they are going and where the lighting is poor. For this reason, it should be ensured that there is sufficient lighting in corridors, stairs and all other areas. Employees should also avoid entering an unlit area as much as possible, and should be made aware of the importance of turning on the lights and changing office light bulbs on time.
Employees should be informed about choosing the right shoes. Owners of workplaces with working conditions that require special equipment and clothing should apply the dress code as a requirement of safety procedures, and make sure that these rules also include shoes. Even in office environments, slippery-soled shoes should be avoided in order to prevent accidents such as slipping and falling. Occupational safety shoes with nose protection and special soles should be preferred, which are suitable for the conditions of employees working in areas such as production.
Appropriate handrails should be used. There should be suitable handrails on balconies, mezzanines and stairs in workplaces. Railings that are shorter than the standard can be a serious risk factor, especially in falling from balconies. On the stairs, employees should be encouraged to hold onto the railing with one hand, even if they are carrying anything, and guides should be used for this purpose.