Winter is here! With slush-covered boots, salt, snow, calcium and dirt are quickly invading our facilities!
An ice storm brings in the New Year and, the better part of 2015, for most of us, has been spent by avoiding ice-rink sidewalks on our slippery commutes. With so much focus on not tripping over on our way to work, it’s easy to forget the hazards that await us upon our arrival. In fact, the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS) reports that many slips, trips and falls (STF) accidents occur indoors on surfaces that are wet which account for over 60,000 workers each year in Canada.
An article by the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety (CCOHS) reminds us that health and safety is not the only concern but so is “the average cost of an STF incident is $3,500 in direct Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) costs and as much as $21,000 in indirect costs, which include worker and equipment replacement, downtime, legal expenses and other expenditures”. Implementing winter routines that reduce the chance of STF accidents is therefore a business decision that will drastically reduce abundant injury related costs.
Though it might seem like STFs are an unavoidable winter hazard, they are also the most easy to prevent. Not only do these tips help create a safe indoor environment, it also adds to the integrity of your business- creating a sense of safety, foresight and organization within your facility for employees and visitors alike.
Typically, in every type of facility, measures such as creating an effective cleaning program, ensure that the chance of slips and falls are reduced. However, effective prevention, especially throughout the winter months, involves increased communication regarding appropriate types of footwear for designated areas in the building. Communication also includes the use of proper signage to indicate wet areas as well as helpful reminders for removing boots or wiping feet on a welcome mat before entering a room.
Using adhesive material or anti-skid carpets wherever possible will also help. Keeping walkways or hallways free of obstacles and ensuring that there is proper lighting throughout the facility is a natural way of drastically decreasing accidental trips while making it easy to clean and maintain the area as well.
The appearance of safety within our facility should always be a priority. In order to ensure safety, frequent moping of wet floor along with a program that focuses on deep cleaning and protecting is crucial.
Reacting as a sponge, carpets help in reducing slippery surfaces but require more frequent cleaning and drying during the winter season. Using a neutralizer and salt remover like Avmor’s EP88 Caprice will drastically contribute to maintain a clean and safe appearance on floors and carpets.
Every step towards safety is a step towards the success of your business and the overall well-being and success of your facility. Implementing preventive measures such as keeping specific areas properly cleaned & maintained can drastically reduce injuries. Let’s provide a safer and cleaner environment for our employees and visitors this season!