Slips, trips, and falls are serious workplace hazards. It only takes a moment to lose your footing and plummet to the ground – regardless of height. Take the following precautions.
Top 5 Common Slip, Trip, and Fall Hazards
Preventing Slips and Trips
Good housekeeping is important in preventing falls due to slips and trips. It includes:
- Clean all spills immediately,
- Mark spills and wet areas,
- Mop or sweep debris from floors,
- Remove obstacles from walkways and always keep walkways free of clutter,
- Secure mats, rugs and carpets that do not lay flat,
- Always close file cabinet or storage drawers,
- Cover cables that cross walkways,
- Keep working areas and walkways well lit,
- Replace used light bulbs and faulty switches.
Protective Equipment and Signage
- Proper footwear, such as slip resistant shoes,
- Non-slip mats,
- Signage and/or yellow paint marking areas that change in elevation or protrude.
- Take your time and pay attention to where you are going,
- Adjust your stride to a pace that is suitable for the walking surface and the tasks you are doing,
- Make wide turns at corners,
- Always use installed light sources that provide sufficient light for your tasks,
- Use a flashlight if you enter a dark room where there is no light,
- Make sure that things you are carrying or pushing do not prevent you from seeing any obstructions, spills, etc.
What Employers Should Do
- Have a company policy in place that clearly outlines the rules for housekeeping, lighting and inspections,
- Ensure that required personal protective equipment, and other equipment, is in good repair and used properly,
- Provide proper training to workers on how to clean up spills,
- Provide continuous follow-up to make sure that the rules are adequate and are being followed, and to identify what needs improvement,
- Investigate all incidents to determine how to eliminate the cause.
Published: August 14, 2020
“Focus on Falls”, Workplace Safety North, 22 January 2018, www.workplacesafetynorth.ca/news/news-post/focus-falls
“Prevention of Slips, Trips and Falls”, Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety, www.ccohs.ca/oshanswers/safety_haz/falls.html
“Welcome to OSHA’s Fall Prevention Campaign”, Occupational Safety and Health Administration, www.osha.gov/stopfalls/index.html
“Falls”, Ontario Ministry of Labour, May 2019, www.labour.gov.on.ca/english/hs/topics/falls.php