General: Anytime someone slips, trips, and or falls in the workforce can lead to a serious injury. In 2011, nearly 135,000 nonfatal fall-on-same-level incidents occurred in private industry. There were also 111 industry fatalities according to the 2014 edition of the National Safety Council’s Injury Facts. Injuries from STF often occur from wet floors, loose rugs, clutter in the walkways, poor lighting, open drawers, and uneven surfaces. Below are some things to consider helping eliminate STF incidents:
1. Clean up spills as soon as they occur.
2. Mark spills with a warning sign.
3. Mop or sweep up debris from floors.
4. Remove obstacles from walkways.
5. Secure mats and carpets with tape to ensure they remain flat.
6. Close cabinets or drawers when not in use.
7. Keep workplaces and walkways well lighted.
8. Replace burned-out light bulbs and faulty switches.
Flooring: Walking surfaces can be made safer by replacing unsafe floors, installing mats or adding abrasive strips.
Proper Footwear: Choose your footwear carefully depending upon the areas in which you work and the type of work that you perform. The right footwear is a key to reducing the number of STF incidents.
Tips to reduce the risk of STF incidents:
1. Pay attention when walking and do not rush.
2. Make wide turns at corners.
3. Keep flooring in good condition.
4. Have a flashlight handy in case you enter a room with little or not lighting.
5. Be extra cautious around stairways.
6. Do not carry packages which obstruct your vision. Make two or more trips if necessary.
Conclusion: Watch your step to help not becoming a STF statistic in 2014.