Some employers might assume that slip trip, and fall hazards are only seen in factories and construction sites. They couldn’t be any more wrong. Those safety hazards are also found in the office, and employees can fall victim anytime, despite spending most of their days in front of their screens.
A charger plugged into an extension cord is one common hazard. If the phone is on the desk, and the extension cord is lying haphazardly on the floor, you may trip on it, lose your balance, and end up with an injury on your knees or face. If you happen to be carrying a hot beverage, that will add to your injuries, or cause someone nearby to get hurt as well.
Your pantry and toilets are full of slip hazards. If an appliance or fixture is leaking, and you never noticed, it’s only a matter of time before someone slips and falls. The aftermath could be dreadful to imagine.
That said, here are some safety measures every office should implement:
Improve Slippery Surfaces
If your floors aren’t carpeted but tiled, all it takes is a small spill or leak for someone to slip. Consider changing slippery floors into wall-to-wall carpets, or any other material that’s slip-resistant. Wall-to-wall carpets, after all, tend to collect dirt and are unfriendly to people with dust sensitivity.
The flooring types ideal for an aging adult’s home will be one of your best choices. Such are the following:
This may not be suitable for offices, but if the nature of your business is on the casual side, it may look appropriate in the space. Cork offers some cushioning and sound absorption, so if the noises of footfalls bother you, this flooring will fix that pet peeve. It’s easier to clean compared to carpet, and if you want to keep it from collecting dirt, you can protect its porous surface by applying a sealant.
Vinyl is highly popular, thanks to its affordability, stellar quality, water resistance, and luxurious appearance. This flooring type is ideal for offices with a homely interior design.
Rubber flooring is traditionally used in gyms and kids’ play areas. But it can look appropriate in an office too, as long as you choose the right design. Like cork, rubber also looks good in offices with a casual ambiance. If you’re a little formal, find a place for it in your break room.
Hardwood, Bamboo, and Laminate
The classic hardwood floors, without a doubt, fit any place and aesthetic. Bamboo is a close competitor, possessing equally elegant looks and quality. Laminate, on the other hand, is the cheap alternative for the two. The only drawback to laminate is its poor sound absorption. In fact, it amplifies noise. Bamboo and hardwood don’t have that problem.
Keep Walkways Clear
Aside from removing extension cords out of the way, keep filing cabinets closed and desk drawers shut when not in use. Employees can bump into them and lose their balance. If liquid spills on the floor, wipe it off immediately and put up a caution sign on the wet area. Slip hazards shouldn’t be a problem if you’ve got cork or carpet flooring, but other types aren’t as slip-resistant when wet.
Take Out Dim Light Fixtures
If you’re renting an old office building, chances are some of its light fixtures aren’t bright enough. One of the top causes of slips, trips, and falls is poor lighting. If you have employees with bad eyesight, dim lights are even more hazardous for them. Not to mention tasks become harder when the room isn’t bright enough.
Make Stairways Safer
Another top cause of falls is stairs without railings. Some contemporary designs take out the railing because it can decrease the airiness in a space. However, omitting railings should only be an option if you don’t have elderly, disabled, or visually impaired employees. In addition, skipping the railings may be workable too if the steps are wide enough. Still, some people cannot use the stairs confidently if it lacks railings.
Prevent or Address Leaks Immediately
If you keep a toolbox at home, you should also have one for your workplace. Your maintenance personnel should have tools readily available if a leak occurs in your kitchen or bathroom.
To prevent your plumbing fixtures from leaking, reputable adhesive suppliers can provide your company with a pipe sealant. That should be used on the pipe’s seams and joints to increase its water tightness. A plumber’s putty is also a good product, but it isn’t an adhesive, so it may loosen over time.
With these safety measures applied in your office, incidents of slips, trips, and falls are less likely to occur. Your company can avoid contributing to the massive amounts the UK economy loses each year due to those incidents.