SLIPS, TRIPS, & FALLS
We may not consider slipping at work, home or tripping on the sidewalk to be serious risks, but they can be deadly. Falls are the third leading cause of unintentional-injury-related deaths for all ages and the number one cause of death for those 65 and older, according to injuryfacts.nsc.org.
A slip, trip or fall at work can lead to injuries – and even death. In 2013, injuries from slips, trips and falls resulted in 229,190 cases involving days away from work, and 724 workers died, according to the 2016 edition of the National Safety Council chartbook “Injury Facts.”
Slips and trips
Slips happen when there isn’t enough friction or traction between your feet and the surface you’re walking on. Common causes of slips include wet or oily floors, spills, loose or unanchored mats, and flooring that lacks the same degree of traction in all areas.
Trips happen when your foot strikes an object, causing you to lose your balance. Workers trip due to a variety of reasons, including clutter in walkways, poor lighting, uncovered cables, drawers being left open and wrinkled carpeting or rugs.
To help prevent slips and trips:
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that falls can happen in all occupational settings, and “circumstances associated with fall incidents in the work environment frequently involve slippery, cluttered or unstable walking/working surfaces; unprotected edges; floor holes and wall openings; unsafely positioned ladders; and misused fall protection.”
To reduce the risk of falling at work, pay attention to your surroundings and walking at a pace that’s suitable for the surface you’re on and the task you’re performing. Additionally, walk with your feet pointed slightly outward, make wide turns when walking around corners and use the handrails on stairs.
It may seem trivial, but injuries and fatalities result from trips and falls. Be reminded of these safety tips and make sure you make it home for dinner tonight.