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Keeping Floors Clean to Prevent Slip & Fall Accidents

Floor cleaning is integral to the process of maintaining a safe work environment.

by Steve Brownlie

The National Floor Safety Institute assert that falls account for over 8 million visits to the emergency room ever year and slips and trips account for 1 million of this. This type of accident can result in all kinds of injury and in a professional workplace you want to ensure that your floors pose minimal risk to anyone entering your premises. While slips and falls are not the most dangerous (or fatal) of occupational injuries, they do account for the most days lost at work and therefore business owners should be doing all they can to maintain safe and clear premises, especially floors, to avoid any chance of risk.

While compensation culture shouldn’t be at the forefront of our minds, a safe and healthy workplace should, any slip or trip can lead to a claim and if floors aren’t clean and tidy, you could be found negligent and liable. Floor cleaning is integral to the process of maintaining a safe work environment.

Professional Flooring Cleaning for a Safer Workplace

An effective and managed floor care maintenance regime helps to ensure a better work environment for all. Even in terms of aesthetics, clean and tidy environments are more pleasing for all and the overall environment is improved. Effective and regular floor cleaning services ensure there is no risk of waste collecting up, torn or damaged floor tiles to be left and importantly, slip resistance is maintained.

Minimizing Slip and Trip Hazards

Dependent on the type of professional cleaning service you invest in, you may need to have your own understanding of how to handle slip and trip hazards. For example, if you have scheduled cleaning morning and night and there is a spillage midday, you should be ready to deal with this accordingly. Dealing with accidental spills and leakages has to be reactive and quick. Spilled food and drink create an immediate slip hazard so should be cleaned up immediately and were necessary, you may need to use barrier matting or signage to keep people away from the area.

Processes such as wet mopping and floor polishing should never take place during working hours. The floors are naturally going to be wet and the potential to slip is greatly increased, making it important to minimize traffic during this time.

Best Practice in Professional Floor Cleaning

Employing professional floor cleaners ensures you have a safe working environment, provided you work with and communicate with your cleaning team. The following points should be essentials in your relationship:

1. Regular Cleaning Schedule

Maintaining a regular schedule for cleaning is vital for ensuring floors are always free of debris and safe. Regular sweeping and mopping helps to minimize any risks and if any damage is found to the floor, such as tears, rips or bumps, they can be dealt with accordingly. A professional janitorial service can ensure cleanliness and tidiness throughout the premises. Seasonal weather such as rain or snow may also mean you want more reactive services too and a good cleaning company will discuss this with you.

2. Correct Use of Equipment and Cleaning Products

Working with a professional cleaning company ensures you have access to the right equipment for the job. Using the right tools and products is essential for different types of flooring and getting it wrong can cause extensive damage or exacerbate the risk of slips and falls on the surface.

3. Hazard Signage and Communication

Appropriate signage such as wet floor signs and caution signs should be used wherever possible. A good line of communication is also key, so all staff know if floors are being polished for example, to avoid that particular area. It is during the cleaning process that many slips and falls occur so ensuring correct signage and good communications are standard should help minimize this risk.

Maintaining a Safe, Clean and Professional Business Environment

Keeping your staff and any visitors to your business safe should be an absolute priority. What’s more, a clean and well-maintained business environment is much more attractive to visitors and improves first impressions.

Minimizing the risk of any kind of accident in the workplace is essential and for some it is easier than others. Professional, thorough and regular floor cleaning can make one of the most common workplace accidents less of a risk in your business.

Photo by Pierre Châtel-Innocenti on Unsplash