Slips, trips and falls account for an estimated 12-15% of workers compensation claims. In addition, these incidents cost employers’ tens of billions of dollars per year from regulatory fines, productivity losses, and other administrative expenses. Making sure that you have the correct safety equipment and protocols in place will save you from legal liabilities and costly fines. After all, the average slip in the workplace costs around $20,000 to pay out and $50,000 to defend the claim.
Common Causes Of Workplace Slips and Falls
Society’s number one source of loss for workers compensation and general liability customers involves slips, trips and falls incidents. Restaurants, bars, and grocery stores are common industries affected by workplace slips, trips and falls where the hazards may include:
- Wet/oily floors
- Walkway obstacles
- Inadequate lighting
- Improper floor mats
- Weather conditions
- Improper footwear by employee
Importance of a Floor or Walkway Audit
A floor audit or walkway audit is a risk control service designed to reduce the risk of slip and fall injuries. Completing a floor audit and developing a plan to improve floor traction will help to prevent costly customer and employee slip and fall claims.
Society Insurance risk control experts work directly with policyholders, taking a proactive approach to reduce the number of slip and falls and their severity. This is done by reviewing floor cleaning procedures, the use of floor mats, maintenance and repair of floor surfaces, advocating non-slip footwear programs, and completing walkway audits.
Slips, Trips and Falls Safety Tips for Your Restaurant Or Store
It is critical that every business have proper mats and mat placements. There are mat service companies that can regularly replace and examine mat placement for your business if you’re looking to save time. Having mats in the correct places is crucial in preventing incidents and insurance claims.
It’s All About Placement
Doormats should be placed:
- All entrance zones – front, back, side, and employee entrances
- High-risk zones – bathroom to hallway, around ice machine, employee prep
- High-traffic zones – hallways, checkout station, pathway from kitchen, produce sections
- Productivity zones – work stations, customer service areas, food receiving area, etc.
Additionally, be sure to:
- Clean up spills immediately
- Use a ‘Wet Floor’ sign to alert of slippery surfaces
- Keep debris and clutter out of hallways and high-traffic zones
- Put runners over cables or keep them out of the way entirely
- Ensure lightbulbs are regularly replaced
- Make sure employees wear non-slip shoes
- Ensure floors are well-maintained (ie. no cracks, missing tiles, unevenness, etc.)
Watch Our Slips, Trips and Falls Webinar
If you’re interested in learning more about floor care, check out our blog post on the importance of wet floor signs and regulations. Or browse our Slips, Trips and Falls blog series for more helpful tips. Society can make a big difference for your business – contact your local independent agent to ask how.